Poet Ian McMillan was born in 1956, in Darfield, South Yorkshire, England and was educated at North Staffordshire Polytechnic. He has been a poet, broadcaster, commentator and programme-maker for over 20 years. He founded Versewagon (later re-named Circus of Poets), a performance poetry group with John Turner and Martyn Wiley, and appears regularly in schools, arts centres, prisons and at literary festivals.
He appears regularly on television and radio and contributes articles to the Mail on Sunday, The Guardian, the Barnsley Chronicle, Q, Mojo, Poetry Review and the Yorkshire Post. His poems have been published in many magazines and newspapers including The Observer and the Evening Standard, and broadcast on numerous television and radio shows, including BBC1's Football Focus. He also hosts The Verb, a new arts programme broadcast on BBC Radio 3.
He was Writer in Residence at Padgate Library, Cheshire, and Bolton Boyd Adult Literacy Centre, Bradford, in 1984, and Creative Writing Fellow at Sheffield City Polytechnic from 1984 to 1985. He is Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Northern College, near Barnsley, and has also been Poet in Residence at Barnsley Football Club, Yorkshire Television's Investigative Poet and Mobile Bard of the late Northern Spirit rail network. In spring 2002 he became Poet in Residence for Humberside Police Force.
His poetry and prose collections for adults include Dad, the Donkey's on Fire (1994), I Found This Shirt: Poems and Prose from the Centre (1998) and Perfect Catch (2000), a collection of poems, plays and other writings. His poetry for children includes Elephant Dreams (1998). His most recent book for children is The Invisible Villain (2002). In 2005, his play, Sister Josephine Kicks the Habit, based on the work of Jake Thackray was first performed.
Ian McMillan performs with cartoonist Tony Husband and musician Luke Goss, and in 2007 was Yorkshire Planetarium's Poet in Space and the National Poetry Day Poet in Residence. He presented Ian McMillans Writing Lab on BBC Radio 3 - a series on the art of writing in the same year, and in 2008 his book Talking Myself Home: My Life in Verses was published.
Batteries Not Included: 36 Poems Poetry Leeds, 1980
The Changing Problem Carcanet, 1980
An Anthology from Versewagon (with John Turner and Martyn Wiley) Versewagon Press, 1982
Now it Can be Told Carcanet, 1983
How the Hornpipe Failed and Other Poems Rivelin Grapheme, 1984
Six: The Versewagon Poetry Manual (editor) Rivelin Grapheme, 1985
Tall In The Saddle Doorstop Books, 1986
Selected Poems Carcanet, 1987
More Poems Please, Waiter, and Quickly! Sow's Ear, 1988
Overstone (with David Harmer and Martyn Wiley) Arnold Wheaton, 1988
Unselected Poems Wide Skirt Press, 1988
Against the Grain Nelson, 1990
A Chin?: Poems Wide Skirt Press, 1991
Radio 5 Poems Twist In The Tale, 1993
Yakety - Yakety - Yakety - Yak! : Poems (with Martyn Wiley) Twist In The Tale, 1993
Breathless (editor) Write Around, 1994
Dad, the Donkey's On Fire Carcanet, 1994
Primary Colours (editor with Elizabeth Carter) Swaledale Festival, 1996
Elephant Dreams (with Paul Cookson and David Harmer) Macmillan (Sandwich Poets 3), 1998
I Found This Shirt: Poems and Prose from the Centre Carcanet, 1998
Just Like Watching Brazil Yorkshire Art Circus, 1999
Perfect Catch Carcanet, 2000
The Very Best of Ian McMillan Macmillan Children's Books, 2001
The Invisible Villain Macmillan Children's Books, 2002
Ideas Have Legs: Ian McMillan vs Andy Martin FUEL, 2006
Chelp and Chunter: How to Talk Tyke (illustrated by Alex Collier) Collins, 2007
Talking Myself Home: My Life in Verses John Murray, 2008