The Spark owner,
(Darryl on the left)
• How long have you been involved with The Spark?
I first started writing for the Spark back in 2002 - so that's eight years now. the first piece I wrote was a review of a holiday cottage in France, then John asked if i'd be interested in writing a local food page which made a lot of sense as I was the fruit and veg buyer for Harvest/Essential Trading at the time.
• What's your role at The Spark?
I write the food page, compile the Ignite section and edit the events pages. Oh, and I own the business now; I took over the running of the magazine two years ago and I'm now buying the magazine and the parent company from John.
• What are your particular interests/strengths/focus?
I'm obsessed with music, which has absolutely no bearing on anything I do at the Spark or for any of the other magazines I write for. I love food, am passionate about ethical sourcing and write about food, specifically local, regional and organic food, for a number of magazines including the Spark, Venue and Essentially Catering.
• When I say I work at The Spark people say...
Some say 'oh, I love the Spark', but quite a few say 'where?'!
• Something that might surprise you about my job is...
I'm just as in the dark as you are! It's been a huge learning curve and I'm still learning.
• Something that might surprise you about The Spark is...
We've been going for 17 years; we're the biggest magazine of our kind in the country.
• I know its been a good day when...
I don't have to resort to chocolate.
• The thing I'm most proud of is...
Having helped to keep the Bristol L&G Switchboard open when it was on the verge of collapse; having helped give Bristol it's first LGBT radio show; the mirror I made at the Creative Glass Guild; my Mother; getting drunk with REM; I also run a blog www.theworldsworstrecords.blogspot.com which I'm particularly proud of.
• Before I worked for The Spark I...
Spent years working in the record trade and then in the organic food trade; I designed the Harvest store in Bristol (yes, it's my fault. Sorry!).
• When I'm not working at The Spark I...
Write. As well as writing for the Spark I edit Venue's L&G section and write food and drink articles for them. I also write for a number of other magazines, although I've cut that back since becoming more involved with the running of The Spark.
• What I like about working at The Spark is...
The atmosphere: the team are great and a joy to work with (I always swore I would never work in an office, so the work environment here would have to be special!). I love our integrity, the fact that we won't run advertorial. I like the idea that we are, in some small way, helping people live a better, more planet-friendly life.
• How would your colleagues describe you?
Loud, jolly, opinionated, skeptical.
• Anything else you want to say
No. It's about what we do, not what I do!
• If people are interested in my skills they can contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org