Minister of the Month – Matthew Yorke

Posted by theministry on 3rd June 2016

Meet our Minister of the Month, engineer turned writer Matthew Yorke. A calm and enthusiastic Writing Mentor, Matthew has done more sessions with a single group than any other mentor.


Name:?Matthew Yorke

Volunteer role:?Writing mentor

Live:?Dalston, London

What’s your favourite story and why?

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. I read it again and again. Top drawer stuff in terms of romance, atmosphere and storytelling.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:?

I was an engineer. Now I’m a writer. Which might sound like an odd combination – but not when you consider that both involve building something.

Why did you decide to volunteer with Ministry of Stories?

My own kids had grown up… I missed the vitality, the humour, the enthusiasm.

Were you nervous about anything before starting?

I was nervous about everything. Would I know what to say? Would anyone speak to me? In fact it was easy to get involved; and once I was those concerns seemed to melt away.

What has been the best experience of volunteering?

To see a young writer surprised by an idea that has occurred to them. Where did that come from? Magic!

What has been the most unexpected thing about volunteering?

How much it has helped my own writing. To be reminded that stories need to have a beginning, a middle and an end; that a reader, whilst being eager to engage, doesn’t have unlimited patience.

Describe the Ministry of Stories in three words:

Exhilarating. Hilarious. Rewarding.

What would you say to other people thinking of volunteering with the Ministry?

Give it a go. Chances are it will put a smile on your face.

NEXT PAGE: Minister of the Month - Ithaka Cordia