I’m a writer and linguist and have flipped back and forth between fulltime writing and fulltime academia throughout my working life. Until now. I’m now a writer with just a few post-grad students to supervise for The Open University. By some accounts that makes me semi-retired. But I know the truth about writing.
The writing career highlights – my short stories have been published in several literary magazines and some of my stage plays have been professionally performed with the support of Arts Council England. Other plays were given rehearsed readings and sit in my computer like orphans waiting to be adopted. Taking a break from scriptwriting, these days, I find myself writing more and more essays. One of these essays was shortlisted by Wasafiri Magazine for their Life Writing Competition 2014. I’m also experimenting with some hybrid essay forms.
Of course, there is a novel. In truth, it’s my third novel, but the first two weren’t published and now seem like distant relatives long dead. The completed novel has had a half a dozen readers (writers and former English teacher friends). I’m doing some editing on it and plan to send out sample chapters to agents in the autumn.
As a linguist, I’ve authored four textbooks, including Digital Textuality (2015, Palgrave Macmillan), and I’ve had my research published in several books and journals. I’m also a regular contributor to the Literary Encyclopedia – that has come about from my academic life, but it feels more like freelance writing now.