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Comment from the book world in October 2021

October 2021

"I'm not studying because I want to write stories"

18 October 2021

My teacher said: ‘Stories? How do you at the age of 13, come to me brazen-faced and say, "I'm not studying because I want to write stories?" Explain: how can you be so brazen-faced?... I decided I would start writing again, but I wouldn't tell anyone...

The humiliation got to me and later, in spite of the swagger of youth, I really was very cautious. I didn't believe, for example, in the convention that we have a single face and that face is our identity. We are changeable organisms...

Rather than assail me, that man tried in a cruel, confused way to protect me, and I learnt more from the episode than I'm willing to admit because writing is a game of chance, and it's very rare that you win.'

Elena Ferrante, bestselling author of the Neapolitan quartet, My Brilliant Friend, and The lying life of adults and many other novels, who has steadfastly concealed her or his true identity from the world.


'Those words that are rolling through my mind'

4 October 2021

‘I write in my head on the way home from work, or when mowing the lawn, or on a night out with friends. Sometimes I find the time to capture those words that are rolling through my mind, quivering and drumming and swimming, banging into each other until I can finally trick them and leak them out onto the page. And sometimes I don't. Writers are like that.'

Karl Wiggins, indie author of Calico Jack in Your Garden and three other books.