Garry John Martin was born in Burton upon Trent in 1948 and educated at the local Grammar School and Art College. He attended Emmanuel College, Cambridge, where he read English. He subsequently pursued a career as a Systems Analyst in the City of London.
Eager to be reunited with literature once more, he wrote for Yachting and Boating Weekly for a year or so, documenting a sailing trip that took him halfway around the world. He has made a number of radio broadcasts, once describing his experiences in Kurdish Iraq immediately after the first Gulf War. The journal of that journey became the basis of the novel, A Sane Asylum. This work was accepted by a publisher.
Needing to complete an unfinished novel, he worked as a schoolmaster for a number of years, first at Brentwood School in Essex then at King Edward’s School in Birmingham, before opening ‘Blythes’ restaurant in Coleshill. Later he opened a bookshop in Knowle.
The Malvern Publishing Company published his first novel To Weave a Rainbow at that time. The imprint was designed to bring new novelists to the marketplace and even though the book did well, he wasn’t able to pursue a writing career then.
He visited India intending to write a book about Avatars but produced instead The Boy who Made God Smile. This novella was accepted by Harper Collins in California.
Beginning as a Writer in Residence at Cranleigh School, he returned to teaching and spent the remainder of his working years at Nottingham High School, specialising in A-level and Oxbridge entrance and nurturing any writing talent he encountered. A number of his former pupils have done well, particularly Jonathan Coe. The Rotters’ Club describes their shared time of bulletin boards and magazines at KES. Robert Macfarlane is a close friend; they edit each other’s work. He also taught the journalists Andrew Billen, Mark Steyn and Oliver Smith.
To date, G J Martin has written a dozen novels and three plays.
He has two grown daughters, Ellen and Alice. His partner is the artist, Sue Lewis-Blake, whose work can be seen in the images used on this website.
He writes in the Derbyshire Dales.