ABOUT BEVERLEY JOUGHIN-ROBSON
Who Is Beverley Joughin-Robson?
Some background information:
I taught in state schools in Essex, for nearly twenty years. I moved to Stoke on Trent to start a new life on my own, in my mid-forties, after my marriage broke up and my mother died. Although I left my family and friends behind, I made many new friends when I started working at Newcastle under Lyme School and added to my family when I met and later married the Director of Rugby. I love living in this area, the people are so friendly, the countryside is so beautiful, and Newcastle Town is more like a welcoming village. This has become my home. A place to inspire my future writing.
Although retirement has provided me with the time to write and paint, I enjoy my sporadic work as a career’s adviser, without which, I would miss the contact with young people.
I love encouraging children to write creatively, whether stories or poems. I would always have my classes writing Christmas Sonnets at the end of term, during the run up to the Christmas holidays. I liked to combine a few games and word-related activities to help children understand language techniques: similes, metaphors, alliteration, rhyme, rhythm and so on, as well as developing their vocabulary, to help them write their own poems. Maybe one day they will be writing a poetry book of their own.
I have always enjoyed writing about places, people and experiences, that have made an impression on me. My best writing tends to be written when I am most emotional. It took me a long time to write my first novel, the poetry book came first. I was browsing through poems I had written over the last twenty years or so, and like looking back over old photographs, I was taken back to moments in my life and engrossed in forgotten memories. After some culling and re-writing, I collated them chronologically as they took me through a period in my life. I then added poems inspired by the birth of my granddaughter and further reflective poems to produce this anthology. Of course, the best time to publish poetry is my age, when you have retired. You do not care as much about what people think and you are more willing to ‘reveal,’ yourself to a public audience.
I love the humour and rhythms of Roger McGough, the powerful descriptive scenes of war poets such as Wilfred Owen and the memories and people described in the poetry of poets such as Seamus Heaney and Carol Ann Duffy. Like my influences, my poetry is an eclectic mix.
My first novel is a story that evolved from stories my mother told me of her childhood and of memorable events from my own childhood and life growing up. I was only a few chapters in when the narrative changed tact. I could feel a murder evolving and i had to re-write parts of the story as I turned it into a more gripping murder mystery.
I could not wait to write the sequel which is much more of a crime story, and resolve the questions, I knew my readers would be asking.
I mainly paint in oils. I begun painting pet portraits for friends and family, but I have painted a variety of landscapes too. Oil on canvas has always been my preferred medium but now I also enjoys painting with acrylics and watercolours.