I started writing creatively as a hobby while working as a freelance journalist. For fifteen years I wrote about financial and workplace issues for a variety of newspapers and magazines, including five years as Cosmopolitan magazine’s monthly money columnist.
I began to take my creative writing more seriously while studying for an MA at Sunderland University. I continued my studies at Newcastle University, finally gaining a PhD entitled Uncertain Race: Writing Mixed Lives in 2010.
Today I work as a community artist and creative writing tutor through my company Hereandhuman.com. I specialise in enabling people to represent life stories, whether their own or a real or fictional character’s. For example, this summer I was lead artist on the I-Move project ‘To Market’, helping a group of writers bring characters from the history of Leeds’ Kirkgate market to life for a promenade performance through the stalls.
I also use a variety of media in order to make life stories accessible to those with limited language skills. So, earlier this year I worked for West Yorkshire Playhouse enabling a group of learning-challenged young people to produce a series of self-portraits using photography and graphic art.
Through Hereandhuman.com I also run general creative writing courses in Leeds and Bradford for adults who want to improve their poetry and prose.
Finally, my daughter Genevieve, was born in July 2012.
You are not invited (poetry pamphlet) –
ID on Tyne Press
Morphea in Skin (anthology) – Route
Testimony in Brown Eyes (anthology) – Troubadour
Secrets in Sepia Souls (anthology) – ID on Tyne Press
Abstract of The Book of Ghosts in Ex Plus Ultra (Leeds University Postgraduate Journal)
Humber Mouth Literary Festival 2010 Podcasts
Two 30-minute programmes (podcast over the Festival website and via iTunes) comprising a series of conversations and reflections with authors including Andrew Motion and Robert Edric on their writing and audience reactions.
Ed Whaley for Tyne and Wear Archive Services 2008
A first-person monologue imagined from the point of view of 1920s and 1930s music hall star Ed Whaley commissioned as part of the Archive’s education programme.
On the occasion of William Wells Brown and William and Ellen Craft addressing the Newcastle Meeting House, 1851 – as observed by Miss Elizabeth Richardson, age 13
A poem commissioned as part of Newcastle upon Tyne’s Slave Trail project June 2007 and read as part of the Slave Trail commemorative walk.