Tim Taylor was born in Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent and grew up near Leek. He studied Classics at Pembroke College, Oxford, then spent a few years playing guitar in rock bands before reluctantly knuckling down and joining the Civil Service. Having since done a PhD in Philosophy, he now divides his time between writing and part-time teaching in Ethics at Leeds University. Tim lives in Meltham, West Yorkshire, with his wife Rosa and fifteen guitars.
Tim has been writing on and off for most of his life, but started to write more seriously when he left the Civil Service. Since then, he has published two novels with independent publisher Crooked Cat, a poetry collection with Maytree Press, and numerous individual poems and stories. He has won, or been placed in, a number of poetry and short story competitions, and came second in the Hammond House International Poetry competition earlier in 2021.
Q: If you could travel back in time, which of the great writers would you like to meet and why?
A: I’d love to meet Shakespeare – to pay homage, and to see what gave him such insight into the human soul.
Q: What is the first book you remember reading or having read to you as a child?
A: I remember being given A.A. Milne’s Now We Are Six, when I was five and had chicken pox. I was pleased that I could read it a year early.
Q: Do you have a favourite quote? (From a book, film, song, speech…)
A: I’ve always liked ‘never let the truth get in the way of a good story’ – attributed (possibly falsely) to Mark Twain – though I don’t necessarily agree with it in the case of historical fiction. I often modify it to ‘never let the truth get in the way of a good poem’ – which I definitely believe.
Q: What superpower would you like to have and why?
A: I’d like to be able to stop time and wind it back a bit, so I could correct my own mistakes (and maybe avert the odd disaster too, though I’ve never aspired to be a superhero).
Christmas Eve had always been Matt’s favourite night of the year. The reasons he liked it were not the same ones that appealed to other people. It had never been, for him, an evening of quiet relaxation and festive cheer. In fact, it was always a time of hard work, when he would put in a much …