Midge Gillies is rarely happier than when she’s in an archive or talking to someone about the past. Her favourite period is World War Two.
Her books include biographies of the record-breaking pilot, Amy Johnson (Amy Johnson: Queen of the Air, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 2003) and the Edwardian music hall star, Marie Lloyd (Marie Lloyd, The One and Only, Gollancz, 1999). Her new book, Piccadilly, The Circus at the Heart of London was published by Two Roads in October 2022.
In The Barbed-Wire University (Aurum, 2012) she writes about Prisoners of War and creativity in what Nicholas Lezard of The Guardian described as “one of the best war books I have ever read”.
She has also written about Britain in 1940 (Waiting for Hitler, Hodder & Stoughton, 2007) and the lives of military spouses (Army Wives, From the Crimea to Afghanistan, the Real Lives of the Women Behind the Men in Uniform, Aurum, 2017).
Writing Lives: Literary Biography (CUP, 2009) and Literary Non-Fiction (A Writers’ & Artists’ Companion, written with Sal Cline, 2015) both examine aspects of creative non-fiction.
She is Academic Director of Creative Writing at the University of Cambridge Institute of Continuing Education and is married to the award-winning novelist, Jim Kelly (who also writes as JG Kelly). They live in the Fens with a cat called Midnight and an Irish terrier called Scout.