Sir Andrew Motion was born in London on 26 October 1952, and read English at University College, Oxford. He taught English at the University of Hull (1976-81) where he met his mentor, the poet Philip Larkin. He was editor of Poetry Review (1981-83) and was Poetry Editor and Editorial Director at London publishers Chatto & Windus (1983-89). He succeeded Malcolm Bradbury as Professor of Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He was Chairman of the Arts Council of England's Literature Panel 1996 to 2003. An acclaimed poet (and champion of poetry), critic, biographer and lecturer, Andrew Motion became Poet Laureate in 1999, succeeding Ted Hughes. He is currently Professor of Creative Writing at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Andrew was awarded the Newdigate Prize at Oxford for his poem 'Inland', included in his first collection of poems, The Pleasure Steamers, published in 1977. His poetry collections include Independence (1981); Secret Narratives (1983); Dangerous Play: Poems 1974-1984 (1984), which won the Mail on Sunday/John Llewellyn Rhys Prize; Natural Causes (1987), which won the Dylan Thomas Award; The Price of Everything (1994); Salt Water (1997) and Selected Poems 1976-1997 (1998). A collection of poems, Public Property, was published in 2002. A short novel, The Invention of Dr Cake, which combines elements of mystery and detective fiction, was published in 2003. A memoir, In The Blood, was published in 2006. His latest collection of poems is The Cinder Path (2009).
Andrew is also the author of several acclaimed biographies including The Lamberts: George, Constant and Kit (1986), which won a Somerset Maugham Award; Philip Larkin: A Writer's Life (1993), which won the Whitbread Biography Award; A Life of John Keats published in 1997; and Wainewright the Poisoner (2000), an account of the life of Thomas Wainewright, critic, forger, painter and suspected murderer.
Andrew lives in London, and New York. He received his knighthood in 2009. He is the Chairman of the Man Booker Prize 2010.