Chris Martin has been involved with Drama all his life. He qualified from Manchester University with a BA Hons in Drama in 1989. He then taught at Halton Middle School in Leeds for two years. Next he moved to Bridlington on Yorkshire’s East Coast becoming ‘Head of Drama’ then ‘Head of Performing Arts’ at Bridlington School. After 9 years he moved across the Pennines to Lancashire. In 2001 he took up a ‘Head of Drama’ post at Thornleigh College, Bolton. Finally, after teaching for 22 years, Chris left the profession in 2013 to focus on writing full-time. However, he does still occasionally return to the classroom to present literacy/drama workshops and talks to primary and secondary youngsters.
Now, as well as a string of highly successful murder mysteries and Mystery Shorts, he’s currently involved in writing the ‘Inky Stevens, Great School Detective,’ series of novels aimed at young adult readers. Having secured a publishing deal with Hogs Back Books, Inky’s first outing, ‘the Case of Caretaker’s Keys’, is due for release in the Autumn of 2018. To follow Inky’s progress please access:inkystevens.com Inky Stevens
Chris’ interest in Drama has seen him perform in, and direct, many plays and musicals over the years. He worked on a project alongside the RSC for two years and picked up two NODA awards while acting with his local group, the St Paul’s Players, Adlington. Throughout this time Chris’ interest in murder mysteries slowly evolved. While living in Leeds he ran a murder mystery drama company specialising in hotel performances throughout West Yorkshire area. Yet it was while teaching in Bridlington that the idea for writing, then publishing, his plays began. ‘Who Killed the Headmaster?’ was performed by staff as part of Bridlington School’s Centenary celebrations in 1999. Chris built on the success of this event after relocating to Bolton. At Thornleigh College, for over a decade the ‘Staff PTA Murder-Mystery Evening’ was a highlight of the school’s calendar. Year on year, the cast list of his plays swelled to accommodate all those desperate to take part. And once the whodunits had been tested out onstage, they were made available on a website created by brother, Rob. Nowadays, such is murderplays’ popularity, that many companies come back year after year for their ‘annual slice of murder’. And to add an alternative to the full-length murder mysteries, Chris is now in the process of developing a series of ‘Mystery Shorts’ to expand the list of murderplays titles (please see the relevant website section).
The majority of the murderplays performance events have taken place in Great Britain, but there’s also a healthy worldwide following, too. Productions have now been staged in countries including Spain, Australia, Greece, Mexico, Indonesia, France, the Falkland Islands, USA, and even on a cruise liner sailing the Med. Also, following a request from a publishing company based in Holland, Chris is currently involved in a project to see is plays translated into Flemish.