Lianne Herbert: The issues I’m planning to write about, in my new career

Posted on October 29, 2015

You’ve already heard and seen the news. D/deaf and disabled people are going to be worse off because of the impeding cuts by the Government.

‘How will I live?’

‘How can I have access to work?’

‘How will I…?’ you question, as your future looks bleak.

I, for one, have been wondering about my own future.

As I am a parent I am now looking for more realistic solutions that will allow me to look after my son and have a career that I’m passionate about.

Before my son was born I had a job in a severely disabled high school as a Deaf student was attending and needed a member of staff who knew BSL. I didn’t last long as I felt I was doing too many varying roles, which included personal care for my young adults.

For me, it was mentally and physically draining. I knew it was not the career for me, to be a teaching assistant. The headmaster herself said I should be doing something more creative!

I have since considered being a writer more seriously. A freelance writer, author, screenwriter and playwright, as I feel that’s where my strength lies. Oh, and also acting, but my writing will come first so that more roles are created for D/deaf and Black people.

For my writing I want to draw from my own personal experiences of deafness, racism and mental health issues.

These are all topics some people like to ‘brush under the carpet’ but I for one will not. These may be seen as very heavy topics but I’ve not always had full control of my life experiences for various reasons.

The main reason is people and their responses to certain situations. I will disguise some of my experiences under fiction to make things more theatrical and to also protect people’s identities.

I have a different perspective on D/deafness as my own experiences have been unique. I have grown up studying music and I’ve achieved a Music and Arts Management degree at Middlesex University. Some D/deaf and Hearing people like to retort that I’m not deaf as I cope so ‘well’ in the Hearing world.

As a writer I feel I can raise awareness about my hidden deafness. I DO wear hearing aids but still many fail to see this (which I find very annoying).

I also feel that through my writing I can create more job opportunities mainly for deaf and disabled people. It’s a long-term goal but I have many business ideas to make this achievable.

I feel the barriers I may face are that people may not want to confront these issues or cannot understand my viewpoint no matter how hard I try. However, I feel now is the time as many articles, books, TV programmes and films are tackling these subjects more than before.

Here’s hoping for a brighter future as a writer.

Lianne Herbert won a place on the ‘Deafinitely Theatre Creative Competition 2011’.  Since then she has written two short plays called ‘TwentyFortySeven’ and ‘The Door’ which both have been performed at RADA Studios and The Park Theatre. ‘TwentyFortySeven’ has been written into a full-length play, a rehearsed reading should take place next year. Lianne is currently working on her debut novella with a working title of ‘That Weird Deaf Girl Over There.’
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