My background is in theatre - performing and writing. I have written for educational and fringe theatre for over 30 years and have had scenes and plays read and performed at the Tristan Bates Theatre in The Actors' Professional Centre in London and in the Lilian Baylis Theatre in Sadler's Wells and have also taken part in the Soho Theatre Writers' Programme. I have a PhD in contemporary writing for theatre from the University of Chichester and have a special interest in women writing for theatre. Recently, I have worked as an Open University tutor in creative writing - playwriting and fiction writing and as an Associate Lecturer at other local universities. For the past few years, I have been writing short stories and have had short-listings for national awards such as the 'Mslexia' Prize 2012 and the Asham Award 2013. A few years ago, I started writing poetry and have had one long-listing for the Plough Prize 2013 (Andrew Motion). I love reading and theatre, yoga, meditation and dance. I live in Southsea, near to the sea and have always been involved in local arts. I belong to New Writing South and attend writing workshops and hub events in the region. I also like to attend acting workshops in London and continue to perform when I can.
Suzanne Bowen in 60 seconds
When did you start writing?Hampshire
What do you love about Short Stories?I love short stories because they enable a writer to experiment with ideas in a way that might not work in a longer form.
Do you write in other forms?Plays and some poetry. I am also attempting a novel (surprise).
What distracts you from writing?Chores inside the house; sunshine outside.
Outside of writing, what are your other passions?Theatre, watching and performing, reading, my garden, shopping in London or Brighton, browsing interiors magazines.
What is your favourite book?'Le Grand Meaulnes' by Alain-Fournier.
Who are your favourite writers?Shakespeare, Jane Austen and Loads. Donna Tartt, Siri Hustvedt, Rose Tremain, Ian McEwan, Paul Auster. That's just a few.
Where is your dream location?I can think of many. Right now I fancy New York.
What one item would you put into Room 101?Aggressive pavement cyclists.
Do you have any advice for new writers?Keep reading and always analyse how and why something works, not just whether you like it or not.
Work by Suzanne Bowen:
Leaving The Garden
Maureen the Assistant Librarian has spent a night in her suburban garden, having drunk too much champagne at a high class midsummer party in the Holland Park garden of her work colleague Adrian, whose style, wealth and exalted friends raise the question of why he is still working in the Library. As the perfect midsummer night passes into dawn and Maureen thinks about the events of that party, her solitary existence seems to be coming to a crisis – but someone - or something – has followed her home and is in the garden with her.
Big JUNE lives alone in her childhood home, a large house in suburban South London. She has been there since 1954 and no-one has re-decorated since 1973. Anyone noticing June thinks she’s odd; people keep their distance. One day, a stranger - a young woman called Lottie - walks in uninvited and starts to ask questions. Over the months, June and the house seem to reveal their secrets. June loves Space and especially, the star of the TV Sci-fi programme to which she is addicted. Lottie helps June to transform her life, build her telescope and finally prepares her to leave to pursue her dream. But where has Lottie gone?
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