An interview with Jo Cockwell (Co-Writer)


Where are you from, what is your background and how did you become a writer?

[Jo] I am from the New Forest in Hampshire and started life as a girl who loved creative writing and art at school.  That soon got slapped out of me and I worked as a solicitor to pay the mortgage.

As soon as my first daughter was born and I was able to step out of the real world I found that my heart was drawn back to what I loved most as a girl - telling stories.

I would hardly call myself a writer as the process by which Simon and I write seems to involve Simon doing the hard graft whilst I mainly sit beside him, frowning, scratching my head and barking ideas at him.

Does storytelling matter?

[Jo] There is no question that storytelling matters deeply to me and my family. I can't think of a night when I haven't read my girls a story before bedtime or told them a story from my hands (our personal book!).  I also love evenings when I get to see a film or read part of a newspaper, magazine or book that has a wonderful story to tell, fictional or not.  For me, stories are an affirmation that all over the world and throughout history there is a bond between us all that is timeless and universal.

I cannot really answer whether or not storytelling matters in the wider political sense - can storytelling change all of our lives for the better? I would love to think so.

What was the worst thing about making Seachd?

[Jo] The distance between Simon and myself whilst he was directing on Skye and we were living down in the New Forest.

What was the best thing?

[Jo] I still cannot believe that ideas that came out of my mouth became words spoken by people I had never met, filmed by people I didn't know and seen by people I know nothing about.

Can you tell us anything little known about the making of Seachd?

[Jo] Simon performed a stunt on the In Pinn that never made the final cut...and strangely, production design bought an old book for the set which was entitled "Tales of Grandfather"...

Have you written anything since Seachd?

[Jo] Yes, Simon and I have finished the first draft of an historical tale set in 9th Century Scotland which looks good (we hope!), next draft here we come...

Previous interviews:

An interview with John L Cobban (Sound Designer)

An interview with Aonghas Macneacail (Co-Writer)

An interview with Aonghas MacAoidh (Editor)

An interview with Vidal Sancho (The Spaniard)