Consultant in maritime history and creative lifestory
My other lives
I have been writing non-fiction flat out for far too long now. But among my other sides are these.
Making textile art, with historical photos transferred to fabric. This seems to me to be a way of adding another dimension to history, especially using old clothes and photoshopped images.
It is a rare pleasure for me to combine representing other's history with exploring my own history and also sharing something I've sewn at home in a private fine art struggle to convey a subjective truth.
The Museum of Liverpool has included my stitched map of the queer pub where I (fairly) innocently pulled pints in 1969.
The fabric piece and accompanying drawing of the ground plan are in the LGBTQI+ exhibition Tales from the City, and on the related blog: http://blog.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/2018/03/frontstage-and-backstage-at-the-magic-clock-easter-lunchtime-1969/
Whenever I can I write short stories, and often publish them under pseudonyms. 'Lying creatively' is a great way of taking time out from being a teller of literal truths, as a historian. And it's a way to weave and explore all the things that I discover that have to be off the record.
I used to write a lot of fringe plays and enjoyed having them performed. I've even got an MA in Modern Drama. Exploring with actors and directors is so eye-opening that I hope to do more plays soon.
Doing performance poetry
There's something so exciting about speaking/dancing/miming something, not just writing a straight history book. My next few years, I hope, will involve lots more use of open mic nights and playing with idea of uttering sounds, not just words.
And the rest …
- I go walking by the reservoirs five minutes away
- I draw with pastels
- Gossiping with mates is one of my favourite activities, especially over cocktails and cake
- Yes, I am that stereotype, a woman with a cat - and proud of her, Amber.
If I could do anything I'd
- Have been a feature film director
- Make our too-big garden an atmospheric one, with the help of many creative green-fingered experts
- Get my health back
- Organise peace and justice in the world. Now. Just like that.
Fred and Rita's honeymoon
Anarchist sheep in our garden, Pennines