Joy’s formative moment was in 1991 when she watched Terminator 2 and Thelma & Louise non-stop, alongside her beloved Film Studies A-level at Accrington College while scribbling scripts on the side. She should’ve immediately started making movies about awesome northern cyborg women, but she got stranded in the real world writing journalism, interactive quizzes and CVs for senior executives, until she won a place on the first BBC Writers’ Academy, which allowed her to become a full-time scriptwriter.
For a while, it was tricky to do her thing until grounded/elevated genre came out of the shadows and women started to be allowed to tell those stories – thrillers, horrors, sci-fi, comedies, sometimes all at once; set now or in the past or in the future, or sometimes all once. And always about something, ideally changing the world.
She lives in London, writing non-stop across film, TV, theatre, radio drama and occasionally prose fiction, and is now directing, which she loves. She’s still to make her movie about awesome northern cyborg women, but it will happen. One day…
Joy is an Honorary Benefactor of Burnley Youth Theatre, has spoken on numerous panels at industry events, and appeared on Start the Week, Woman’s Hour and Front Row. She has also been on several cultural podcasts, including the Best Pick podcast here, arguing the case for Apocalypto.
Her favourite TV shows include The Prisoner, GBH, The Wire, Game of Thrones, Twin Peaks, Succession and Peaky Blinders. Her favourite films are Terminator 2 and Aliens. But she also likes The Terminator and Alien, and everything from Aguirre, the Wrath of God and Old Boy to sex, lies, and videotape and Rita, Sue and Bob Too. If it’s original and has some audacity, she’s probably into it.