Steve Dearden was elected as an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2022.
Steve Dearden co-founded the Writing Squad in 2001 and it remains the only source of long-term support for young writers in the north of England, whatever they write and wherever they live. Squad writers have been broadcast by every UK channel, produced at all the national and many regional and fringe theatres, published by presses from Bloomsbury to Broken Sleep and won many awards. They have also gone on to teach, translate or write purely for leisure/well-being. Previously Director of Ilkley Literature Festival and of the National Association for Literature Development and Literature Officer for Yorkshire Arts, Steve was the first funder to support Reader Development and helped develop national schemes for live literature, writers in prisons and The Literary Consultancy Free Reads. He’s served on many boards including Grimm & Co and Inpress Books, and as a producer has set up his own found literature projects and worked on large-scale, site-specific projects.