Stellar Quine of the Month: Zinnie Harris

Zinnie Harris

How would you describe your current job and what do you like best about it?
I am a playwright and a screen writer and sometimes also a director.

What do you consider your best work and why?
Making a living from my imagination.

What was your first ever job?
First ever job was working in a café, but the first writing job was a weeks paid work to take part in a writing workshop run by Tom McGrath.

What was the contact/opportunity/job offer that you feel has made the most difference to your career?
Probably that week with Tom – first pay check that I received for writing, and it made me feel legitimate in calling myself a playwright. I also gave up the job in café at that point and started taking writing a bit more seriously.

What’s the biggest opportunity that you missed or wished you had taken up but didn’t?
To write a film with Anthony Minghella.

What’s your favourite theatre production?
Oh god, blimey, of all time? Can’t possibly choose. Many.

What do you like the best about working in theatre?
The people. The serious intent of creating a story.

What do you like the best about being a writer?
The space and quietness of being alone with my thoughts. It’s a mixed blessing, sometimes the loneliness drives you crazy too.

What advice would you give emerging female practitioners in theatre today?
Don’t let anyone ever tell you that you have to expect less because you are a woman. People said that to me all the time at the beginning, and it doesn’t have to be true. There are definitely less female playwrights around at the moment, but lets change the world. Work out why women aren’t writing, and make it better.

Who would your Stellar Quine of the month be and why?
Orla O’lochlin. She is a great supporter of women and women’s writing and I think we’ll be seeing great things from her at the Traverse.

SQ of the Month