C. Burkham is a writer, who has this to say about himself …
“Following my expulsion from various British schools, I took a job teaching at The International School in Khartoum, Sudan, before returning to the UK and self-publishing a post-Punk fanzine, Hot on the Visuals..? at the end of the 1970s.
This led to an invitation to write for the music weekly, Sounds.
Here, as well as interviewing cutting-edge bands and record-reviewing, I was also part of a small group of journalists who challenged the prevailing editorial orthodoxy by introducing a mix of journalism that embraced all forms of popular culture, from TV, books, and film, to fashion, sport, and advertising.
This, in turn, led to working for The Face, a monthly magazine which was more in tune with the times; and I interviewed authors, boxers, and musicians, wrote reviews and critiques, as well as working closely with photographers on photo-reportage – for instance, an in-depth report on the rise of violence in British market towns, and the new levels and types of security being used to combat it.
I also wrote for New Statesman, Vanity Fair, Actuel, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Campaign, The Spectator, Time Out and New Society. Once again, my contributions were wide-ranging, from book reviews and cultural commentary to long-form articles on the 1984 Miners’ Strike, the PLO leadership in their Tunisian exile, the London-orbital rave scene, and the 1990 Poll Tax Riots.
At the same time I was employed by a German TV production company to edit and re-write scripts for pan-European production.
I then worked for London’s Evening Standard as launch-editor of its Just the Job weekly magazine; this involved creating a lively, informed, and sometimes irreverent supplement that looked at the world of work in London. The supplement was widely recognised for its creative covers, use of photography, and design.
More recently I have returned to freelance journalism, while my main energies have been concentrated on writing fiction – the novel ‘Exiles’ is the result of that.
This journalism has, again, covered many topics: a Shakespearean drama group in Rio’s favelas; going undercover as an economic migrant in Bratislava; the symbiotic relationship between the modelling and plastic surgery industries in Brazil; as well as travel articles, and pieces on style, politics, design, and film. These have been for the Financial Times, The Sunday Telegraph Magazine, The Observer Magazine, The London Magazine and The Sunday Times.
While writing fiction, I have been encouraged and helped by, among others, Walter Donahue at Faber & Faber, the film producer and critic Colin MacCabe, and the novelist and broadcaster Frank Delaney. Literary agents Sophie Lambert, Laetitia Rutherford, and Jonathan Pegg should also take a bow.
I am currently working on my second novel, ‘WIN’, which is psychological thriller set on a stroke ward at St Thomas’s hospital, where the mental and physical paralysis of the patients is mirrored by the political paralysis across the Thames in Westminster.”