"Without doubt one of the godfathers of British horror" - Michael Wilson, This Is Horror
"One of the most provocative and unsettling of contemporary writers" - Andy Hedgecock (Asst Fiction Editor, Interzone)
"A master craftsman" - Dark Musings
"One of the most ingenious practitioners of the horrific at work today" - Barry Forshaw, Crime Time
"Ghost writer extraordinaire" - SFX magazine
"One of the UK's leading exponents of the short form" - Peter Tennant, Black Static
Stephen Volk is the BAFTA and British Fantasy Award-winning writer of ITV's paranormal drama series Afterlife starring Lesley Sharp and Andrew Lincoln, and the notorious (some say legendary) BBCTV "Halloween hoax" Ghostwatch, which spooked the nation, hit the headlines, and caused questions to be raised in Parliament.
He has just adapted Phil Rickman's Midwinter of the Spirit for ITV, starring Anna Maxwell Martin and David Thelfall, currently shooting in Hereford, while his most recent feature film was The Awakening, a period ghost story starring Rebecca Hall, Dominic West and Imelda Staunton for BBC Films/StudioCanal. On stage, play at The Bush Theatre, The Chapel of Unrest, starred Jim Broadbent and Reece Shearsmith, premiered in 2013.
His first produced screenplay was Ken Russell's Gothic, a trippy retelling of the Mary Shelley/ Frankenstein story starring Gabriel Byrne, Natasha Richardson and Timothy Spall. His other scripts since then include The Guardian, directed and co-written by William (The Exorcist) Friedkin; Superstition starring Mark Strong and Charlotte Rampling; and Octane starring Madeleine Stowe, Norman Reedus and Jonathan Rhys Meyers. For television, he has written for Channel 4's Shockers and BBC1's Ghosts. He also won a British Academy Award (BAFTA) for his short film script The Deadness of Dad starring Rhys Ifans.
His first collection of short stories, Dark Corners, was published by Gray Friar Press in 2006, from which his story 31/10 (a sequel to Ghostwatch) was shortlisted for both a British Fantasy and a HWA Bram Stoker Award. More recently his novella Vardoger was shortlisted for both a Shirley Jackson Award and a British Fantasy Award and his stories have been selected for Year's Best Fantasy and Horror, Best British Mysteries, and Best New Horror with two stories appearing in the inaugural edition of Salt's Best British Horror 2014. He also writes a regular comment piece for the magazine Black Static, called "Coffinmaker's Blues".
His most acclaimed fiction so far is the novella Whitstable - featuring the late horror star Peter Cushing and published by Spectral Press in 2013, the actor's centenary year. Also published in 2013 was his second story collection, Monsters in the Heart (Gray Friar Press) which won Best Collection at the British Fantasy Awards 2014 (Whitstable was also a finalist for Best Novella). His third collection, entitled The Parts We Play, will be published in 2016 by PS Publishing.
Before becoming a full-time writer he worked as an advertising copywriter, notably for Ogilvy Benson and Mather, winning a Silver Lion, IPA Effectiveness in Advertising Award and two Design & Art Direction Awards. Before that, he studied Graphic Design at Coventry College of Art and was a winner of the BBC/UNESCO/ICOGRADA/ASIFA International Animated Film Contest, subsequent to which he gained a postgraduate certificate with distinction in Radio Film and Television at Bristol University's Department of Drama.
He was born in Pontypridd, South Wales, and now lives in Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, with his wife, the sculptor Patricia Volk, and a cat he doesn't like.
Photograph (above) by Jonathan Hall (Clerkenwell Films/ITV). Below: by Alex Yallop (Portrait by Jennifer McRae)
Bottom: photograph by Ian Drake (imagebytesphotography.com)