The Eye Magazine (Huddersfield) September 2012 – My childhood library

When I was a little girl, my parents used to take me and my sisters to the local library, two minutes walk from our house. We’d spend some time in the children’s section, carefully selecting our books from the brightly coloured displays. I remember walking up and down the stacks of books, overwhelmed by the choice.

I loved reading so much I would sneak the lamp under the bedclothes to carry on with my favourite book, long after bedtime. Later, a career in publishing seemed the obvious choice. Reading was integral to my job and I got to meet the authors too.

I was lucky that my parents understood the value of books and education. It made an enormous difference to their lives and they were able to pass that on to their children. Forget 15 minutes of reality TV fame as a route to success, reading gives you much more freedom and choice in your career and your life – and the pleasures of reading last a lifetime.

My local library was closed down in the 80s when Margaret Thatcher put the squeeze on local council funding. It’s now a bank.

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Authors, artists, designers, film-makers, musicians – anyone working in a creative industry at some point has to consider how to get their work out to a wider audience.

With the advent of the digital age, there are more opportunities than ever for creative people to promote their work. Today, most will have their own website and use sites such as YouTube and SoundCloud to promote their work, as well as social media.

For those of us running businesses in the creative sector, communicating with other businesses can lead to collaborations that benefit both sides. Businesses need copywriters, designers, composers, video-makers, and creatives need accountants, solicitors and other business services.

As part of Kirklees Business Week (24-28 September), I’ll be joining colleagues from the Huddersfield Creative Arts Network (HCAN) to give a free seminar on how to promote the arts and build links with business. ‘Even Artists Need Accountants: How Creatives and Business Can Work Together’ takes place from 12.30-1.30pm on 26 September at the Galpharm Stadium. Hope to see you there.


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Read my monthly column in The Eye magazine, interviews with top authors in Excelle magazine, features written for Around Town magazine and a variety of articles written for the national press.



From Joanne Harris to Iain Banks, find out more about events with bestselling authors and creative writing courses in Huddersfield run by Key Words.

For business there’s a choice of Writing for Business seminars, one-off masterclasses and speaking engagements, as well as our monthly Coffee & Cake Business Network event at Café Society in Huddersfield