As far back as secondary school, I used to write scurrilous doggerel about the teachers which entertained friends and classmates and no doubt formed the basis of verses I wrote later for my own pupils when I was a teacher. 'Warning - Too Much Schooling Can Damage Your Health' came out of this back in 1988 (still just about in print!) and gave me the confidence to call myself a writer. While I concentrated on poetry and stories for younger readers, which, to be frank, paid more bills than writing for grown-ups, I did always enjoy writing fiction. Short stories were accepted by small magazines here and there and then I had the good fortune while working in Singapore to have some broadcast on Radio Singapore and then taken up by a local publisher. Again, this gave me the confidence to continue writing more serious fiction - though I've always enjoyed creating stories for teenage readers, especially those who are not eager or fluent readers: it's a challenge to get that balance right. One of my short stories got under my skin until I turned it into a novel, 'The Curious Case of Dr Mann', published by Pennine Pens. I don't think it sold more than a hundred copies but it satisfied that itch. Now, apart from educational resources, I write what I feel like, run the Poetry Place site for Teachit and write sonnets for charity. And every now and then a short story asks to be written...
Trevor Millum in 60 seconds
When did you start writing?12 Woking, UK.
What do you love about short stories?I like short stories because you can be minimalist. That doesn't really work in longer fiction - things have to be explained...
Do you write in other forms?Poetry and short plays, especially for children.
What distracts you from writing?All the other things that are necessary or interesting.
Outside of writing, what are your other passions?Gardens and gardening.
What is your favourite book?Gormenghast.
Who are your favourite writers?Charles Dickens, William Boyd and Daphne du Maurier.
Where is your dream location?West Ireland.
What one item would you put into Room 101?Noise.
Do you have any advice for new writers?Do a lot of it, as well as read a lot.
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