Emma Purshouse was born in Wolverhampton, and is a freelance writer and performance poet.
She is a poetry slam champion and performs regularly at spoken word nights far and wide. Her appearances include, The Cheltenham Literature Festival, Ledbury Poetry Festival, Much Wenlock Poetry Festival and Solfest. She has supported the likes of John Hegley, Holly McNish and Carol Ann Duffy.
Emma has undertaken poetry residencies for Wolverhampton Libraries, The New Vic Theatre in Stoke-on-Trent and The International Festival of Glass in Stourbridge.
In 2007, Emma created her first one-woman poetry play, ‘The Professor Vyle Show’. This was a fast-moving theatre piece that included puppets, poetry and quick changes. The show entertained audiences in senior schools, colleges and studio theatres. She has since created a number of successful poetry shows including the highly acclaimed site specific piece ‘Snug’ with poet and musician Heather Wastie.
Her first novel Scratters was short-listed for the ‘Mslexia Unpublished Novel Prize’ in 2012.
Widely published in small press magazines and poetry anthologies, Emma also had a CD of her performance poetry, entitled ‘Upsetting the Apple Cart’, released by Offa’s Press in 2010.
More recently Offa’s Press has also published ‘The Nailmakers’ Daughters’, which is a collection of Black Country poetry by Emma, Marion Cockin and Iris Rhodes.
In 2016, Emma’s first collection of children’s poetry was produced by Fair Acre Press. This dyslexia-friendly book is aimed at 6 to 11 year-olds and is chock-full of fabulous illustrations by the highly talented Catherine Pascall-Moore, along with top tips and ideas from Emma, for learning and performing poetry. This book won the poetry section of the Rubery Book Award.
Emma enjoys running workshops and is an experienced facilitator. She works with all ages and all abilities, whether it be in a school or a community setting. She has a teaching qualification and an MA in Creative Writing.
In previous existences, Emma has lived on a narrowboat, worked as a taxi base operator, a sign writer, a car valeter and a Coca-Cola mystery customer!
She has been making a living from writing and performing for the past ten years.