Sarah Broughton – Chair
My creative life began first as a devourer of my parent’s bookshelves, then as an artist with a particular passion for photography. After completing two years of a degree in performance art, photography and video in Sheffield, I began to create mixed media work occasionally exhibiting and selling while I made my living in a variety of ways – as a life model, window cleaner, photocopying assistant etc. I also began to write, bit by bit – pieces of prose – most of it hopeless, but fortunately fragmentary and therefore mercifully short.
I formed a company, Forget About It Film & TV, with two friends – Suzanne Phillips, an award winning director and Val Croft, a highly experienced producer. The company’s first production was a four part BBC radio drama series, It’s A Small World written by me. The second commission was for a sixty minute documentary for BBC 4 to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of Kathleen Ferrier, An Ordinary Diva (soon to be shown at the Bath Festival of Music as part of their Ferrier celebrations this year). Commissions for documentaries on Gracie Fields, Vera Lynn, Josephine Baker, Edith Piaf and Val Doonican followed. We also developed feature films including one I had written, about the Surrealist photographer Claude Cahun, I’m in Training, Don’t Kiss Me.
I began to publish articles – profiles mainly – about women writers and artists and the business of writing for various publications: New Welsh Review, Mslexia, Western Mail and the Big Issue. I also finished a part-time MA in Writing at Hallam University in Sheffield. In 2008, Parthian published my first novel, Other Useful Numbers, which has been very favourably reviewed, and in 2009 an audio book read by Cerys Matthews was launched.
Since then I have earned my living largely by working as a free-lance television researcher (mainly for Griff Rhys Jones’ company, Modern Television) and briefly by teaching unenthusiastic undergraduates in Cheltenham. I am also completing an MPhil in Writing at the University of Glamorgan – belatedly catching up on my rather patchy education.
And I’m writing my second book….