This is one woman you might prefer to email

Emma Bache, the UK’s leading handwriting expert, lives in Chiswick and she can tell everything about you from your handwriting – almost. “It’s easier to describe what I can’t tell than what I can” she told me, so if you have contact with this woman and you’re planning a murder, don’t write her a note, send her an email.

Emma’s interest in graphology sprang from a chance weekend course in the subject in the 1980s, which led to her her studying it herself and building a career partly as a newspaper columnist, partly as an entertainer at parties, where she reads the guests’ handwriting and analyses their personalities for the fun of it (Rupert Murdoch and Richard Branson have employed her in this way) and partly as a consultant in the corporate world, analysing the personality of candidates for big jobs.

She says she can tell from a person’s handwriting if they’re depressed or angry, alcoholic or even sexually violent. When in entertainer mode she’ll pick out the positives and keep her own counsel about the bad stuff, but in the corporate world it’s the bad stuff she’s paid for – is this person honest, hard working, someone who works well with other people? Do they have an addictive personality?

She’s analysed the writing of thousands of well-known people, from Donald Trump to William Shakespeare. She liked Rupert Murdoch by the way. “He’s intelligent, quick-witted, hard-working. I didn’t see anything negative” she told me.

Emma’s book Reading Between The Lines is published on 6th September by Quercus books – not an academic book but a fun and family friendly book, she assures me, explaining how to read handwriting – the significance of each facet: the size, the shape, the spacing, the way in which the letters are connected and so on. She’ll be conducting a workshop on the subject at the Chiswick Book Festival on Sunday 16 September, 2-4pm at Arts Ed.

The three things she can’t tell from a person’s handwriting might surprise you: their gender, their age and whether they’re right or left handed.

Book tickets to the Chiswick Book Festival here.