I am a 64-year-old Accountant who semi-retired in 2015 to explore my love of creative writing and travel. In my career, I held Board level jobs for over twenty-five years, in private, public and third sector organisations. I was born in Coventry, a city then dominated by the car industry and high-volume manufacturing. I have lived in the Midlands, the south of England, and now in rural East Yorkshire with Sandra, my wife of over forty years. Since 2015 I am proud to have developed a second career as a non-executive director in Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, a board member of Together Housing, and as a member of the UK Anti-Doping Audit Committee. I still enjoy my work, but I love the freedom that I now have to write, and of course to travel.
When I was nine years old, I told my long-suffering mother that as I liked English composition and drama I was going to be a Playwright. She told me that I should work hard at school and get a proper job. She was right of course.
I did write ten chapters of a novel in 2000, drawing on my upbringing in a council house, and childhood holidays to Cromer, but I wasn’t convinced that it was working as a novel, and work commitments took over.
The opportunity to rekindle my interest in writing came in 2009, when I wrote my first pantomime Cinderella, for my home group, the Walkington Pantomime Players. I have now written eight, Beauty & the Beast being the last, and my all-time favourite. During lockdown, I wrote a Zoom version of Camelot and loved seeing different groups from all parts of the country perform it online. Am-dram hasn’t died, it’s just hibernated and will come back stronger than ever.
I love theatre, particularly musical theatre, and completed the Hull Truck Theatre Playwright course in 2010. My first play, a comedy called He’s Behind You, had its first highly successful showing in 2016. I’ve been on stage a number of times, but I’m not exactly an ‘A’ list actor. In my time in pantomime, I’ve played the Genie in Aladdin, a six-foot Gingerbread Man in Hansel and Gretel, and a Spooky Tree… More recently I appeared in our production of the John Godber play, Lucky Sods, as a Vicar.
As a writer though my focus is on the audience. Be it a play or a novel I’m an old-fashioned writer, I guess. I want you to laugh and to cry. I want you to feel that my stories have a beginning, a middle, and a satisfactory ending. When I write I seem to disappear into another world and become completely self-absorbed. It’s a great feeling.
Live performance is great as you get instant feedback. Sometimes an audience doesn’t find a line funny, and yet something else I write they laugh at. Actors make a huge difference too of course. Every audience has different tastes, some like visual humour, some verbal. Whatever it takes, making people laugh is a really wonderful feeling.
Novels are very different of course, and I’ve been touched to get some lovely reviews both on Amazon, and on social media. The support I’ve received from Cromer Pier Theatre has been outstanding, and I’m planning to launch the second book in the Cromer Pier series in Cromer itself.
If you are an am-dram group looking for a play or pantomime script then why not get in touch? I only ask for donations to the above charity, which is the nominated charity of Hull University Teaching Hospitals, if you make a profit. My pantomimes are written for larger groups, but I’m happy to tailor the script to meet your needs, without any charge. Oh and I expect a couple of free tickets of course…
Another thing that I enjoy is singing with the Hull Hospital’s NHS Choir. In February 2016 we were invited to audition for Britain’s Got Talent at the Birmingham Hippodrome, in front of Simon Cowell et al and around two thousand people. Moments into our song Cowell had a microphone problem, and we stood on stage for around five minutes. During that time, I had an idea. With Hull 2017 City of Culture approaching why not give the kids of Hull a Britain’s Got Talent experience? The hospital partnered with Hull Children’s University and Hull CCG to make it happen, and in October 2017 the first Song for Hull concert took place, involving seven primary schools in front of an audience of eight hundred.
A February 2020 event, fronted by Hull Music Service, took place at the Bonus Arena in front of an audience of eleven hundred, involving fourteen schools. The choir got four yesses that day in Birmingham, but we didn’t make the semi-finals. But Song for Hull endures and will promote aspiration and self-belief in our young people. Maybe the semi-final didn’t matter after all. To keep up with events follow us on @songforhull.
If you are interested in hearing more about my work please get in touch. If you prefer to use social media then I’m on Facebook martingore and Twitter, @authorgore