Margaret Crompton

Between 1975 and 2012, Margaret’s publications comprised mainly articles, papers, training materials and books about communicating with children and young people in the context of social work, healthcare and education.

Since 2013, she has been exploring different forms of writing. Her play scripts are published online by Smith Scripts, and have been performed by several theatre companies, including Script in Hand (which she directs) and Talisman. Her short stories are included in a number of collections, including Arachne’s eighth anniversary anthology, and Solstice Shorts Festival 2020. Margaret’s first Fairlight story, ‘The Midwinter Marriage’, was published online in 2019 and included in The Fairlight Book of Short Stories: Volume 1 (2020). Other Fairlight stories are ‘A House of Music’ and ‘Jacko, Meggie and the Very Old Gran’ (both 2020). Her publications also include poetry, flash fiction and guest blogs, and she reviews children’s literature for a North American journal.


Q: If you could travel back in time, which of the great writers would you like to meet and why?

A: George Eliot: I admire her courage, compassion, understanding and love, her ability to risk failure – every book is an experiment – her spirit in surviving ill health, rejection, bereavement and sadness, and her incomparable writing. I have written a play in her honour.


Q: What is the first book you remember reading, or having read to you as a child?

A: Copy-Kitten (1943, Helen and Alf Evers), bought in Bombay – a present from my father, serving in India during the war. I still have the book, which has plain cardboard covers decorated with a simple stuck-on picture, and is illustrated with drawings in black and yellow. There were many more books but this came to mind at once when I read this question. Contact with The Shannon Trust (which supports literacy in prisons) has led me to realise the privilege of being able to remember shelves full of books from my earliest childhood, when many adults have no access to reading or writing, and no memories of being read to.


Q: Who is your personal inspiration?

A: My husband, John.