Once upon a time I had a day job as an academic lecturing in English and Psychology. Later I was a Research Fellow in the Medical Sociology Unit in Glasgow. I spent a year in a Glasgow secondary school listening to and recording conversations with teenagers and finding out what it was like to be them. Several of my books and many academic papers record the lives of other people, giving them a voice.
Then I became ill. Very, very ill. Not just me, but my two sons and several academics in my husband’s department. We all had ME. I tried going back to work after six years but only lasted eighteen months before a severe relapse.
Seven years on, I exited the ME ghetto again. I ran a gentle, weekly creative writing class at The Salisbury Centre in Edinburgh. I discovered that I loved working with writers, was good at mentoring and above all was passionate about good prose. in 2005, I set up Linen Press as a natural next step.
I have always written. I must be a very slow learner, not recognising that I should have stuck with writing and editing all along. The world of books is where I belong. It’s rewarding and satisfying to work closely with my authors and to turn a promising manuscript into a beautiful book. I revel in each unique and challenging publisher-writer relationship.
Recently there have been big changes in my personal life. Eight years ago we started work on the shell of a contemporary house on a rocky, isolated hillside in France. Now completion is in sight. I become the grandmother of twin girls. Incredibly, in April 2017, another set of twin girls were born. Two sons, two sets of twin girls when we have none in our families. More female stories unfolding.
1993 Letters To My Semi-Detached Son: A Mother’s Story. The Women’s Press.
2011 White Lies. Linen Press.
2015 Run Alice, Run. Linen Press.
2017 The Red Beach Hut. Linen Press.
2013 Shooting Stars Are The Flying Fish Of The Night. Lynn Michell & Stefan Gregory. Linen Press
‘We crossed the Atlantic in a blue boat called Scarlet.’
1987-1991 Write From The Start. Oliver & Boyd. Six illustrated pupils’ books and two teachers’ books to help children become competent writers. The books break away from traditional, narrow teaching methods and redefine writing as everything from a list to a letter to a project. The purpose is to make writing a varied challenge – and fun.
1990 Growing Up in Smoke. Pluto Press. A first account of children as passive smokers.
2003 Shattered: Life With ME. HarperCollins.
1997 A Stranger At My Table: Mothering Adolescents. (Ed) The Women’s Press.
2005 Wild On Her Blue Days. (Ed). AmberSand Press. An anthology of new writing.