Salley Vickers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Salley Vickers
Born 1948
Occupation Writer
Nationality English
Education St Paul's Girls' School
Alma mater Newnham College, Cambridge
Genre fiction

Salley Vickers (born 1948 in Liverpool) is an English novelist whose works include Miss Garnet's Angel, Mr. Golightly's Holiday, The Other Side of You and Where Three Roads Meet, a retelling of the Oedipus myth to Sigmund Freud in the last months of his life. She also writes poetry.

Family, early life and education[edit]

Her mother, Freddie, was a social worker and her father, J.O.N. Vickers, a trades union leader, were both members of the British communist party until 1956. They then became committed socialists.[1] Her father was a committed supporter of Irish republicanism and her first name, 'Salley', is spelled with an 'e' because it is the Irish for 'willow' (from the Latin: salix, salicis) as in the W B Yeats poem, "Down by the Salley Gardens" a favourite of her parents.[citation needed]

She was brought up in Stoke-on-Trent and London,.[citation needed] She won a state scholarship to St Paul's Girls' School which caused her father some ideological consternation but her mother was supportive. Whilst at St Paul's however, her father encouraged her to work to ensure that she experienced working life and society very different from that of her more affluent school peers.[2]

Salley went on to read English Literature at Newnham College, Cambridge.[3]


Following university she taught children with special needs.[citation needed] She also taught English literature at Stanford, Oxford and the Open University specialising in Shakespeare, the 19th-century novel and 20th-century poetry.[4] She was also a WEA and further education tutor for adult education classes.[citation needed] During 2012–13 she was a Royal Literary Fund fellow of her alma mater, Newnham College, Cambridge.[5]


After her initial teaching career, she retrained as a Jungian analytical psychotherapist, subsequently working in the NHS. She specialised in helping people who were creatively blocked.[6] She gave up her psychoanalytic work in 2002 because she found "seeing patients" was incompatible with writing novels, although she still lectures on the connections between literature and psychology.[7]


In 2000 her first novel, Miss Garnet's Angel was published and she became a full-time writer. She wrote novels and contributed to newspaper and magazines.[citation needed]

In 2002, she was a judge for the Booker Prize for Fiction.[3]

In 2011 she contributed a short story "Why Willows Weep" to an anthology supporting The Woodland Trust. The anthology - Why Willows Weep - in 2016 it had helped The Woodland Trust plant approximately 50,000 trees.

Personal life[edit]

She has two sons from her marriage with Martin Brown.[8] In 2002, her brief second marriage, to the Irish writer and broadcaster Frank Delaney, ended and was dissolved "just as her career as an author took off".[7] She lives in Notting Hill.[4]


  • Vickers, Salley (2000). Miss Garnet’s Angel. OCLC 799184817. [9]
  • Vickers, Salley (2001). Instances of the Number 3. [10]
  • Vickers, Salley (2003). Mr Golightly’s Holiday. Harper Collins. [11]
  • Vickers, Salley (2006). The Other Side of You. [12]
  • Vickers, Salley (2007). Where Three Roads Meet.  (part of the Canongate Myth Series)[13]
  • Vickers, Salley (2009). Dancing Backwards. Fourth Estate. [14]
  • Vickers, Salley (2009). Sweet and Comfortable Words. Picador. ISBN 978-0330489737. 
  • Vickers, Salley (November 2010). Aphrodite's Hat, The Collected Stories of Salley Vickers. Fourth Estate. [15]
  • Vickers, Salley (1 November 2012). The Cleaner of Chartres. Viking. ISBN 978-0670922123. 
  • Vickers, Salley (3 November 2016). Cousins. Viking. ISBN 978-0241187715. [16]


  1. ^ Morris, Linda (24 November 2012). "The Interview: Salley Vickers". Sydney Morning Herald. 
  2. ^ Vickers, Salley (3 November 2012). "Five-minute Memoir: Salley Vickers on first-job hell". The Independent. 
  3. ^ a b "Salley Vickers". Booker Prize Foundation. Retrieved 3 November 2013. 
  4. ^ a b O'Kelly, Lisa (5 July 2009). "From couch to ballroom". The Observer. 
  5. ^ "Salley Vickers - Fellow at Newnham College, University of Cambridge, 2012/13". Archived from the original on 7 September 2013. Retrieved 3 November 2013. 
  6. ^ Wroe, Nicholas (28 April 2001). "A story lost and found in Venice". The Guardian. 
  7. ^ a b Lisa O'Kelly (5 July 2009). "From couch to ballroom: Ex-therapist Salley Vickers has always based her characters on parts of herself, she tells Lisa O'Kelly. In her new novel she has them all dancing at sea". The Guardian, London. Retrieved 30 November 2016. 
  8. ^ "Index entry for marriage of Martin R. Brown and Salley E. Vickers". Transcription of birth, marriage and death registry entries for England and Wales 1837-1983. ONS. Retrieved 30 November 2016. 
  9. ^ "Miss Garnet's Angel - Salley Vickers". Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  10. ^ "Instances of the Number 3: A Novel by Salley Vickers". Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  11. ^ Martinovich, Steven (26 January 2004). "Mr. Golightly's Holiday By Sally Vickers". Enter Stage Right. Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  12. ^ Seymenliyska, Elena (22 April 2006). "The Other Side of You by Salley Vickers,". Guardian. Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  13. ^ Holtsberry, Kevin (15 January 2009). "Where Three Roads Meet by Sally Vickers". Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  14. ^ Thompson, Heather (2 August 2009). "Dancing Backwards by Salley Vickers: review". London: Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  15. ^ Arditti, Michael (19 November 2010). "Aphrodite's Hat by Salley Vickers: review". London: Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 25 November 2010. 
  16. ^ Davies, Stevie (5 November 2016). "Cousins by Salley Vickers review – the mysteries of family love". Guardian. Retrieved 9 August 2017. 

External links[edit]