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  • Author Q&A with Matt Haig
    prose tightening nothing beats a quick blast of Lorrie Moore I have a wonderful editor at Canongate Francis Bickmore who is sharp and wise and helps steer me in the right literary direction Litro The Humans has been referred to as science fiction but you have been resistant to this label Why do you think that it shouldn t be considered sci fi Matt Because it is too lazy and literal and I hate labels I think people who are really into sci fi wouldn t really like this book I think it is a book that non science fiction people like more So while it is science fiction it doesn t feel like science fiction If you go solely on plot then it is science fiction but plot is such a tiny bit of what a book actually is that I think we need better labelling systems I d go for Philosophical Literary Tragi comic Fantasy Fable but that is too long and pretentious So let s just say a novel Litro Christmas is seen by many as a very family orientated time of year What are your plans for the festive season Matt God knows I don t make the plans in our house I just go with the flow I m sure it will involve family and slightly stifled conversations with extended family members and unhealthy eating Oh I ve just remembered We re going out for Christmas dinner so no cooking is involved Plus I am taking Lucas to see a special screening of Elf in a museum so that will be nice Matt Haig was born in 1975 His debut novel The Last Family in England was a UK bestseller The Dead Fathers Club an update of Hamlet featuring an eleven year old boy and The Possession of Mr Cave a horror story about an overprotective father are being made into films and have been translated into numerous languages A film of The Radleys is in production with Alfonso Cuaron Matt has lived in London and Spain and now lives in York with the writer Andrea Semple and their two children About Dan Coxon Dan Coxon is the Magazine Editor for Litro co uk and the author of Ka Mate Travels in New Zealand He lives in London where he spends his spare time looking after his two year old son Jacob His writing has most recently appeared in Salon The Portland Review Neon Gutter The Weeklings The Nervous Breakdown Spartan and the Ben Tanzer edited anthology Daddy Cool Find more of his writing at www dancoxon com or follow him on Twitter DanCoxonAuthor Mail Web More Posts 24 Comments comments Prev Litro 131 Family Letter From The Editor Next Safe Keeping Related Posts William Boyd Prizewinning Author of A Good Man in Africa Kusay Hussein and Sue Reid Sexton Co Authors of The Iron Gates of Freedom It s Alright Meaning Just Admit It Litro TV Recent Posts Bringing Up Baby In the Night

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2013/12/author-qa-with-matt-haig/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Litro #131: Family Archives - Litro Magazine
    ones about us and remember the bonds of family If that also involves consuming uncomfortable quantities of food and drink then all the better Read more Litro 131 Family Magazine Archives Litro 131 Family By Litro Featuring stories from Laura McKenna Jesmyn Ward Rebecca Swirsky David Ford Theresa Coulter Holly Corfield Carr and an interview with Matt Haig Read more Litro 131 Family This category contains 9 posts Litro TV Recent Posts Bringing Up Baby In the Night Time Before the Sun Rises at the Gate Theatre True Love in Los Angeles A R BY ANY OTHER NAME The Echo Travelling in Fiji The Litro Blog View Archive 11th February 2016 Litro 149 The Love issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto Love we spend our lives craving it in one form or another searching for it and talking about it Its meaning is felt more than it is clearly expressed Some call it the greatest virtue Continue reading 9th December 2015 Litro 148 The Going Home issue Letter from the Editor By Eric Akoto This month in Litro 148 we explore the notion of what Going Home means to us Is it a familiar physical space A refuge A feeling A state of mind Or is home actually to be found in another human being maybe your partner your parents How do you know when you have found it Continue reading Contact Us General 44 0 20 3371 9971 info litro co uk Sales Advertising enquiries 44 0 20 3371 9971 Email Sales Magazine Editorial editor litro co uk All Online Editorial online litro co uk Book Reviews Author Interviews reviews litro co uk Film Arts Editorial arts litro co uk Litro Lab Podcast litrolab litro co uk LitroTV litrotv litro co uk Litro Listings listings litro co

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/category/print-issues/litro-131-family/ (2016-02-15)
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  • One Man's Dystopia: an Interview with Wayne Simmons
    comfy chair PC iTunes but in the past I ve written just about everywhere on the bus on the train in airports at the beach wherever I don t believe in writer s block to me it s just fatigue and the best way to deal with fatigue is to reenergise yourself and the best way to reenergise yourself is to do things differently write somewhere different or in a different way Horror and science fiction are genres that we don t often discuss here at Litro Who do you consider to be at the forefront of these genres right now Whose writing impresses you David Moody s a name I would throw out Like myself he s probably better known for his horror stuff his zombie series Autumn and zombie esque series Hater but he recently self published an awesome sci fi novel entitled Trust and it s probably the best thing he s ever written Then there s fellow Salt guy Stephen McGeagh whose horror crime hybrid Habit is probably the most shocking thing I ve read in years Of course it s hard to beat King isn t it I m reading Doctor Sleep right now and it s right up there with some of his best work In terms of dystopian fiction Rupert Thomson s the man His debut novel Dreams of Leaving and second outing The Five Gates of Hell are two of my favourite reads of all time So engaging and emotive and utterly heart breaking everything dystopia needs to be Wayne Simmons at Bristol ComicCon 2012 Enough of dystopia What does your own personal utopia look like You know I m a pretty simple guy Like to keep life as uncomplicated as possible Give me a DVD or two to watch the odd CD a new book every month and the occasional gig to attend and I m happy as Larry Heaven is a place on earth lovely Belinda Carlisle once sang and if you re in the right moment it s hard to argue with the girl I ll leave Utopia to the religious Wayne Simmons novel Plastic Jesus Salt Publishing is a sci fi thriller that s been compared to Ridley Scott s Blade Runner and Christopher Nolan s Inception It is available now from Foyles for books and all good bookshops You can read his essay on Blade Runner here Visit Wayne online at www waynesimmons org About Dan Coxon Dan Coxon is the Magazine Editor for Litro co uk and the author of Ka Mate Travels in New Zealand He lives in London where he spends his spare time looking after his two year old son Jacob His writing has most recently appeared in Salon The Portland Review Neon Gutter The Weeklings The Nervous Breakdown Spartan and the Ben Tanzer edited anthology Daddy Cool Find more of his writing at www dancoxon com or follow him on Twitter DanCoxonAuthor Mail Web More Posts 24 Comments comments Prev Q A

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2013/12/one-mans-dystopia-an-interview-with-wayne-simmons/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Cassandra Parkin, Author of New World Fairy Tales
    us about your most memorable encounter My great grandfather was a Methodist minister and in his spare time he wrote an insanely popular series of teaching tracts about the daily lives and experiences of a woman called Mary Martha and her friends They sold in the thousands at the time we have a family photograph of him standing in front of a bookshop the entire window filled with Mary Martha books but of course they ve long since disappeared from the wider world Then one day I found one of them for sale in a charity shop That was a very strange moment What s the most extreme thing you ve done in pursuit of reading or writing I once locked myself in the bathroom at a glossy corporate function so I could carry on writing I was supposed to be schmoozing people and making good contacts and instead I d just necked three glasses of champagne then scuttled off to the Ladies with my notebook I think this was probably a sign that I wasn t entirely suited to a career in blue chip marketing If you were to write yourself as a character what would be your most defining characteristic Write us a paragraph too if you like One afternoon she got into a fight with her boyfriend because she caught him putting the toilet brush in the dishwasher Not even on its own mind you which she could just about have understood but alongside the bowls and the saucepans and the spoons and the plates and the everything When challenged he first demanded How else am I supposed to get it clean and then said smugly Well you let the cats sleep on the bed and that s much worse It took her another three years to get around to leaving him When her friends found out they laughed and told her they d always known she was an idiot savant really If you were to write a novel about an anti hero heroine what would his her central flaw be I knew a girl once who had this really odd compulsion to squeeze glass Christmas tree baubles until they broke She said she didn t really know why she did it She didn t want to break them exactly She just had this consuming desire to keep squeezing a little bit harder and then a little bit harder just to see how hard she could squeeze before they broke and then inevitably she d go too far and smash them and be in trouble and have to pick glass shards out of the carpet and miss one and stand on it and cut her foot I think a surprising number of us have just that same urge but with relationships Not a desire to sabotage exactly just an odd need to test the limits of other people s love and tolerance which inevitably ends in destruction So that s probably the central flaw my anti heroine

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2013/02/cassandra-parkin-author-of-new-world-fairy-tales/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Lynn Shepherd: Author of A Treacherous Likeness
    all places my parents couldn t have dreamed of visiting If you could time travel and teleport which literary world would you want to visit Why Having written about the Victorian period in Tom All Alone s I think mid 19th century London would be fascinating It was a time of so much change and energy and there were so many wonderful writers at work not just Dickens but Wilkie Collins George Eliot Trollope Thackeray Being a writer can be a strange brand of celebrity Tell us about your most memorable encounter I think it was when I gave a talk at a literary festival and someone came up to me afterwards and it turned out to be someone I d gone to school with The other one was giving a talk about Murder at Mansfield Park at the Jane Austen festival in Bath When the lights came up at the end for the question session half the audience were in bonnets If you were to write a novel about an anti hero heroine what would his her central flaw be My latest A Treacherous Likeness has as one of its central characters the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley an anti hero if ever there was one He s a fascinating mix enormously intelligent but seemingly unaware of the consequences of his own behaviour glitteringly creative and yet emotionally immature The gulf between those two sides of his nature was at the heart of the many tragedies that overwhelmed him during his short life and set up a fascinating tension that I was able to explore in fiction If you could have a superpower what would it be Why Mind reading definitely What an amazing talent for a writer to have If you were to find yourself in a Fahrenheit 451 world which book would you save and why Samuel Richardson s Clarissa An enormously long 18th century epistolary novel but an absolute masterpiece and sadly neglected these days What is the most valuable piece of advice you would give a person for a life well lived Make sure you ll never look back and say I could have been or I could have done Seize your opportunities even if it means hard work and perseverance What s next for you work and life wise Work wise I m now writing a fourth book and balancing that with my day job as a corporate copywriter Life wise I d like to find time for a holiday About Litro Online Mail Web More Posts 713 Comments comments Prev New Voices Hanna Jameson on her debut novel Something You Are Next Cassandra Parkin Author of New World Fairy Tales http twitter com CorsairPR status 296609522758324224 CorsairPR Author of ATreacherousLikeness Lynn Shepherd is interviewed in LitroMagazine http t co TPQ3dQmF Related Posts Courttia Newland Playwright Writer Lyricist Music Producer Yangzom Brauen Swiss Tibetan Actress and Political Activist Lee Rourke Author Poet and Short Story Writer Litro TV Recent Posts Bringing Up Baby In the

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2013/01/44622/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Shelley Harris: Author of Jubilee
    be a strange brand of celebrity Tell us about your most memorable encounter In all honesty I don t think writing does have much to do with celebrity unless you re Rowling or Mantel It s pretty good being able to do something which involves a limited public persona but which means you ll never be recognised People ask about Richard and Judy quite a lot Jubilee was one of their Summer picks last year I can report that they were charming well read and enthusiastic as well as impeccably professional Being interviewed by them was like being chauffeur driven through unfamiliar streets and deposited safely at my own door What s the most extreme thing you ve done in pursuit of reading or writing To research my next novel I dressed as a superhero and walked the streets of High Wycombe fighting evil and defending the innocent If you were to write yourself as a character what would be your most defining characteristic Write us a paragraph too if you like My defining characteristic Anxiety and self analysis A kind of humourless Woody Allen but British And in a cardigan The novel would be a doozy If you were to write a novel about an anti hero heroine what would his her central flaw be I would like her to steal things from people who didn t deserve them and give them to people who did Actually that s a genuinely good idea Thanks Litro If you could have a superpower what would it be Why I would opt for invisibility though it would bring its own issues I could be as nosy as my heart desired I d pick up loads of new stories but I d probably witness some things I wish I hadn t If you were to find yourself in a Fahrenheit 451 world which book would you save and why I m torn here between predictable but honest the Collected Works of Shakespeare and my excellent second choice Michael Chabon s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay The latter is as humane and compassionate as all of Chabon s work its prose a continual delight and a source of some jealousy its scope a perfect balance between the large movements of history and the intimacies of human relationships So that s basically your perfect novel then What is the most valuable piece of advice you would give a person for a life well lived Remember that love and kindness are almost certainly more important than anything else you re striving for What question do you wish we d asked you Answer it Q Do you know the words to loads of crappy 80s songs A Yes I do Q How crappy A Toto Fiction Factory Wang Chung Q Wow You re right What s next for you work and life wise I am working on my second novel far more slowly than I could wish Once I ve finished I m going to

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2013/01/shelley-harris/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Anjali Joseph: Author of Saraswati Park
    with money I don t know but the image that floated into my mind was of the now defunct little azure five rupee note which I loved because of the colour It was my first weekly pocket money when I was five or six If you could time travel and teleport which literary world would you want to visit Why Maybe I d slip into the world of a F Scott Fitzgerald story like Winter Dreams or The Diamond as Big as the Ritz or even This Side of Paradise Or into a Kawabata novel like Snow Country or Thousand Cranes where the drama is that the characters are always agonisingly aware of their fears and desires and how indifferent eternity and real beauty is to them Being a writer is a strange brand of celebrity Tell us about your most memorable encounter The strange thing about meeting a writer whose work you admire is that you want to meet them because of the work but when you meet them you want or I want to connect on the normal human level So really you re trying to make friends in a normal way This doesn t always work I don t think I understand or am particularly drawn to the idea of literary friendships where the accent is on literariness rather than friendship but I do have some very good friends who are writers Liking someone and feeling close to them and being able to share that particular pointed verbal experience of the world is a lovely thing though it isn t only writers who are able to do that What s the most extreme thing you ve done in pursuit of reading or writing Extreme I ve paid absurd sums of money in order to transport books from one place to another and I m sure I ll have to do that again One day when I come into some money and have a permanent place to live I plan to get some fitted bookshelves made If you were to write yourself as a character what would be your most defining characteristic Write us a paragraph too if you like I wouldn t Or they re all me If you were to write a novel about an anti hero heroine what would his her central flaw be Discontent The inability to be at rest where you are or to be happy can lead to some quite widespread unpleasantness If you could have a superpower what would it be Why Enlightenment Because then everything else would be pretty simple I suspect everything else is actually pretty simple If you were to find yourself in a Farenheit 451 world which book would you save and why The idea of a world with only one book in it is too weird Maybe something long that I haven t yet read like the unabridged Mahabharata Or the Iliad Something that bears re reading What is the most valuable piece of advice you

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2013/01/anjali-joseph-author-of-saraswati-park/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Once and Once Only: the Finished #Litrostory
    lips and spittle droneandamoeba But Beth and Hank understood made their way through the crowd a smile on their faces excitement in their hearts It s time ABird 1 A set of false teeth that wouldn t have been amiss at Aintree DaveFreeman9 But this was no ordinary crowd every person was waiting for the cue to begin Hank and Beth were about to get caught up in Mehpersonified something much bigger than either of them had ever imagined The three newly acquainted colleagues were making their way to ABird 1 Mecca bingo jorgalbertz The majestic president of the Universe Madame H stepped out of the limo and gave the Recipe Book Canon file to Beth and Hank CuriosityRocks Beth and Hank opened the good book Hank said I begin to see and Beth simply gasped when she saw the coupons GarrJPRBDF Miraculously they were all perfectly intact curiously they had a handwritten note on them saying still valid come find us CuriosityRocks Hank Beth looked up questioningly to Madame H only to discover she had vanished As had the man with the dentures what now Mehpersonified Firstly a hot dog stand and then on to a second hand bookshop where they were able to find the map of Torquay that they needed Botley We can t go to Torquay without proper disguises said Hank Beth s eyes glanced encouragingly to a Party Superstore JustineCabulong As they entered the fancy dress shop they see a man they recognise He was wearing a black suit with a black bowler hat Mr Ben KirstyAitchison Mr Ben locked eyes with Hank and slowly nodded pushing a carrier bag slowly across the counter towards them with a wink JustineCabulong In the changing rooms Beth became Victoria and Hank David The new Beckhams were ready for Torquay but was it ready for them Mehpersonified They strode up the high street looking for the woman with the rainbow umbrella Suddenly they were ambushed ToddMann10000 Paparazzi everywhere Clearly someone hadn t thought these disguises through Getting to Torquay like this was going to be ABird 1 a complete nightmare Fortunately Mr Ben had included instant security incarnate spray Now surrounded by muscle they were safe Mehpersonified But for how long As they approached the rendezvous point a gunshot from a hidden sniper rang out Hank dove to cover Beth ToddMann10000 Beth Hank fell to the floor as the bullet ricocheted off the road nearby They saw the umbrella at the same time So close Mehpersonified Suddenly a black Audi S8 pulled swiftly alongside them the passenger door swinging open and a gloved hand beckoning them in JustineCabulong They got to Torquay with forty minutes left They had to find the ice cream van and disable the chime before it began playing Botley Little did they know the mobile ice cream business was booming in Torquay How would they ever find the right van JustineCabulong Beth we can t let Torquay be nuked said Hank It d be

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/03/once-and-once-only-the-finished-litrostory/ (2016-02-15)
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