Sue was interested in stories long before she started working professionally in 1995. In her 20’s she travelled all over the world for 5 years, immersing herself in the stories of the different cultures she encountered. This is where her passion for African myths, legends and animal tales began. Days, weeks and months of listening to many people’s stories in many different countries, on buses, boats and trains, honed her ear (and nose!) for a good tale and convinced her that every human being on this planet has a story to tell. The only question was: even if their stories weren’t as interesting as others, why did some people get listened to more than others?
By 1987 Sue was working in business, had completed an MBA and was a Business Development Director, mostly for US Software companies. There she first encountered structured stories as a qualified Dale Carnegie Coach and began using stories extensively in her leadership and coaching work. The answers to why some people were better storytellers than others began to become a little clearer. When she attended her first storytelling festival in 1994 she experienced a profound awakening to the power of story to create meaning, connection and community in our lives and her life was changed for ever. After leaving the business world, she trained as a storyteller at Emerson College in the UK and then co-founded the International School of Storytelling in the UK which is still the longest running Centre for Storytelling in Europe. Sue has been working with stories and storytelling ever since, her repertoire includes: Along the Way: Stories from the Camino, Out of Eden: an Ecological Adventure, The Year of the Snake, Conducting the Storm, Thicker than Water and When the Full Moon Rises. However, in 2016 she decided to return to the passion of her travelling days and the joys and challenges of telling and working with personal, true life stories. But this time she feels she has some answers to what makes some people get listened to more than others! She has now refocussed all her work. She has now refocussed all her work on training, coaching, mentoring and facilitating people and processes around true life or biographical storytelling, as well as fostering and supporting the development of storytelling communities around the world to further this work. The Centre for Biographical Storytelling was launched in 2017 and is now the core of her storytelling work.
When she’s not working, Sue likes nothing better than putting on her boots and going for a majorly long hike, singing, studying astrology and travelling. Since 2012 Sue has been what she calls “free range”, renting out her house, putting her things into storage and spending her time working, walking and living more lightly in the world. She took a Sabbatical in 2014 to write, study and spend some time doing nothing much (very difficult in today’s world!) and has come back to work with renewed enthusiasm and new ideas.