John Irving Clarke

John Irving Clarke

Author of books, Children's author, Poet, Scriptwriter, YA author

Also writes as

John, Clarke
Booking enquiry
John Irving Clarke - author tools

Available for

Workshop, Talk, Interview, Commission a book


Age 5 to 7, Age 7 to 11, Age 11 to 14, Age 14 to 16, Age 16 to 18+, Adult



Book types

Fiction for children, Fiction for young-adults, Poetry


  • Writers' and Artists'Short Story Competition 2015 shortlisted author
  • Magic Oxygen Short Story Competition winner 2016
  • Black Horse Poet of the Year
  • Mirehouse Poetry Award



Touchstones on experience. Writing, reading, speaking and sharing in creative arts projects can open up so many horizons. Find your own voice and take pleasure/satisfaction from airing that voice. It's what I'm about. Literacy skills are central; enhanced self-esteem is crucial.

Let your imagination fly, as Robert Frost said, Poetry begins in delight and ends in wisdom. Isn't that true of all writing and creative exploration? I work with all key stages and adults. I prefer to run workshops with active participation from participants of any age. Poetry? Short story writing? Shakespeare workshops? Scripting? Using the Spoken Word to enhance self-esteem? Contact me and we'll tailor something which is absolutely right for your group.

 I have been Head of English in two secondary schools and Assistant Headteacher in another. During my educational career,  I organised creative writing residentials as well as Arvon Foundation course visits for students. And since leaving teaching I have formed and led adult poetry groups, I tutor two creative writing groups including one under the auspices of the Workers Education Association and I played a major role in the organisation and running of a highly successful spoken word event.
  The following recommendations demonstrate how some of my audiences and participants have responded:

It was fantastic. John showed us how to describe things in different ways - that was really good. We had a laugh.
Rotherham Women's Refuge

...a wonderful evening...inspiring and entertaining.
Emma Clark, Marketing and Press Officer, Georgian Theatre Royal, Richmond.

John has a rich repertoire of skills to unlock creative writing potential in children, young people and adults.
Jim Wilson, Hands On Community Theatre Director

The children really enjoyed this afternoon...they love it that they have a poem to take away.
Year 2 Teacher, Castle Grove Infant School

Please come back to our school.
Thomas, Glasshoughton Infant School.

   I am based in West Yorkshire but I am willing to travel. My rates are based on Society of Authors recommendations, but contact me with your idea/visiting writer needs and hopefully we'll work out an appropriate plan.

Books by John Irving Clarke

Stories broadcast on BBC Radio Sheffield and Leeds and published in the Nottingham Evening Post and Yorkshire Ridings magazine, poems published in various magazines such as Poetry Monthly and Smith's Knoll then anthologised in


Who the Hell is Ricky Bell?

Novel. Samantha Jones and the new kid in Year 11, Ricky Bell, were going to raise some hell. So why did they fall in love? 

One River Many Creeks

Poems from all around the world chosen by Valerie Bloom 

Read Me At School

A Poem About School for Every Day of the Year chosen by Gaby Morgan 

Read Me Out Loud

A Poem to Rap, Chant, Whisper or Shout for Every Day of the Year chosen by Nick Toczek and Paul Cookson 

I Was Ready to Fall in Love

Ten stories of love and loss through adolescence and beyond