Cliff Forshaw left school at sixteen and worked in an abattoir before studying painting at art college and developing an interest in languages and European literatures. After various jobs in Spain, Mexico, Italy, Germany and New York and freelance writing in London, he completed a doctorate on Elizabethan satire at Oxford. Since then he has lived in Snowdonia and Yorkshire and taught at Bangor, Sheffield and, since 2005, Hull University.
He has been a writer-in-residence in California, Transylvania and Tasmania, twice a Hawthornden Writing Fellow, and a winner of the Welsh Academi John Tripp Award. He continues to paint and his work has been exhibited in the UK and USA. He has also made two short films to accompany poetry collaborations: Drift was shown at the Humber Mouth Literature Festival in 2008; Under Travelling Skies (Kingston Press, 2012) won the first Larkin 25 Words Award in 2012.
Cliff Forshaw also writes fiction.