I always loved reading; I applied to study English Literature at university because I believed it expressed universal truths. On graduating, I worked in theatre and read scripts for the Royal Exchange Theatre, Bush Theatre, and BBC World Service, before developing new writing for the Soho Theatre Company, Finborough Theatre, and as Senior Reader, Royal National Theatre (1995).
After several years in literary management, I began to write myself: In the Library was a site-specific play for a Salford community project and ‘Walk’ was shortlisted by Andrew Motion for A Poem for Manchester. My first radio play Passing Tides (2003) was Pick of the Day and ‘a superb two voice drama…tantamount to beautiful poetry’—Radio Times. That was the first of a series of commissions for audio drama and broadcasts for BBC Radio 2 and 4.
In 2004, I joined a Buddhist order and was given the name Kavyasiddhi which loosely translates as ‘inspiration through words’. I taught mediation and Buddhism, as well as creative writing and facilitated group sessions on residential retreats and evening classes.
I continued to write – usually alongside a day job – including youth theatre in Wigan (2007) and audio drama. I developed scripts for television through The Writers Lab, a pilot MA in Writing for Television at the University of Bolton (2010/2011).
In 2012 I found myself caring for my mother at the end of her life, and my partner after a serious illness. This shift led me to work in social care, eventually training as a counsellor. For a time I wrote only assignments and case notes until, in 2020, Zoom landed and with it the chance to connect from home with writers across the country. This revived my scriptwriting habit and got me into prose; in 2022 my short story ‘The Silkworm’ won first prize in Tales from the Underbanks and another, ‘Lose the Flute’, was shortlisted for The Henshaw Short Story Competition.
I continue to enjoy and moan about writing in equal measure.