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Jamie Lee Searle reflects on the experience of building a fiction-writing practice fifteen years into a translating career.

Chris Simms explains why research is his favourite part of writing, considers the advantages of talking with real people when seeking realism in fiction, and his own scary undercover experience at the sharp end of an Alsatian.

'I want to recognise the habitual, but not be numbed by it; to retain both first and lasting impressions of a place. It demands both sufficient experience to write with authority and distance to write with liberty, without misrepresentation or betrayal.'

Caroline Brothers speaks with Ann Morgan about writing international stories and her roots as a foreign correspondent, the different forms of bravery involved in writing and the process of seeing your work adapted for the stage.


Sarah LeFanu explores the question of what name(s) to use for biographical subjects, the ongoing danger ‘of not being quite critical enough’ when the subject starts to feel like a friend, and the persistent asymmetry of naming men by surname and women by first name.

Caroline Brothers investigates the issue of cultural appropriation in fiction, suggesting the right way for novelists to avoid crossing that line.


Nick Caistor speaks with Ann Morgan about discovering other realities through language learning at school and in Argentina, the chameleon nature of translation and challenges such as humour, and the importance of maintaining a regular creative writing practice in your own language.

As a writer of non-fiction and memoir, Miranda France reflects on what makes certain narratives so necessary to us, and why telling stories will never go out of fashion.

James Woodall speaks with Robin Blake about how his mother is accidentally responsible for his writing career and some of his subject matter, how his love of Spanish music eventually led him to Latin America, and wanting to escape the constraints of biography.

Miranda France describes the benefits of translation work for a writer: the chance to study the workings of a novel in detail, the wheels and cogs of composition, how characters drive the action, how the narrative is shaped, and then the awareness of the way different languages work
Re-reading the diaries she wrote during the early nineteen-nineties, when she taught English in Buenos Aires, Ruth Thomas found that – as well as details of day-today life – she’d recorded more about Argentina’s political upheavals than she remembered doing at the time.

Miranda France speaks with Carole Angier about her experiences abroad in Buenos Aires and Spain, the role of mordant humour in her work, and her own journey from travel writing to pure fiction.

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