Simon Thirsk is chairman and a founder director of Bloodaxe Books Ltd, one of the UKs foremost poetry publishers which celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2008.
His novel, Not Quite White, a satirical view of how Welsh language and identity is threatened by the English incomers Wales needs in order to survive economically, was published by Gomer in 2010.
His television play Small Zones, starring Sean Bean, was broadcast on BBC-2 in 1990.
Simon studied philosophy, including ethics and aesthetics, as a mature student at Newcastle University under the renowned moral philosopher Mary Midgley.
He worked for 20 years as a journalist, mainly in the North-East of England, has lectured in journalism and marketing, and has worked as the co-ordinator of a medical charity, and as a literature festival organiser.
He moved, with his family, to North Wales in 1997, became chairman of the local town development group and learned Welsh.
He has been interested all his life in the issues of racism and is a strong advocate of integration. As a young man, in the sixties, he set up a youth club for the children of Asian immigrants, and was a committee member of the Teesside International Friendship Council.
Bloodaxe Books is renowned for publishing a diverse selection of poets.