Reece Mastin never kept a diary as a child - he wrote lyrics instead.
He grew up listening to Guns'N' Roses and Aerosmith - influences, which shaped his musical career and propelled him to stardom as the fresh-faced, gritty-voiced teenager who won Australia X Factor 2011.
Next month, the 18-year-old will play in Tauranga as part of a nationwide tour to promote his sophomore album Beautiful Nightmare. He is proud of the fact he co-wrote every track on the album.
"I just think if you write the songs they feel more like you. The fact is people react to honesty, and that's exactly how I want my songs to come across - with a real truthfulness.
"If you say something that people are going to understand straight off the bat, they're gonna find a much easier connection with your music."
He says his music is rock'n' roll blended with different elements and his favourite songs off Beautiful Nightmare are Addictive or Stars.
"Addictive is fun and sexy and cool and got everything in it and Stars is actually written about Rhiannon, my girlfriend - so that is why I love that one."
Mastin played to record crowds in New Zealand last year and says audiences can expect an even bigger and better show this time around. "It's going to be awesome and I am really looking forward to it. We have a big fan base over there, which is fantastic," he says.
However, he also has his sights set on the international stage after working with American industry giants, including Matthew Gerrard (Kelly Clarkson, the Jonas Brothers), Cassius D Kalb (Bruno Mars), and Brian Howes (Puddle of Mud, Hinder), Lindsay Rimes (the Madden Brothers, Stan Walker), and DNA (Shannon Noll, Brian McFadden) on Beautiful Nightmare in Los Angeles.
"Hopefully, I will go back to LA and work on a new album, and I can see myself living there because I love it."
Mastin has just finished shooting a video clip for his new single Timeless and that should be out soon too, he says.
The Fine Print
What: Reece Mastin's Beautiful Nightmare Tour
Where: Baycourt Theatre, Tauranga
When: Saturday, February 16, Ticket Direct - 0800 224 224 / www.ticketdirect.co.nz