All items: biography

Tiffany Murray’s mother worked for a time as a cook for various rock bands, including Freddie Mercury’s Queen. Here, Murray describes what it was like growing up in such ‘Bohemian’ company.

Lucy Moore speaks with James McConnachie about prominent political women in the French Revolution, her study of the lives of some controversial maharanis, and the value of detail such as dress in recreating the past.

In writing about her past, Cynthia Rogerson found that employing the unvarnished truth rather than the embellishments of fiction was sometimes a more powerful way of describing uncomfortable events.

Lucy Moore speaks with James McConnachie about recovering the life of a civil war aristocrat from her ‘receipt book’, the roots of chemistry in the housewife’s distilling room, and the contrasting attitudes of Puritans and Royalists to the role of women in society.

Robyn Marsack speaks with Cherise Saywell about how her interest in the literature of WW1 led her to the work of Edmund Blunden, about discovering her own grandfather’s WW1 writings, and an astonishing literary surprise.

Robin Blake reflects on the history of ghost writing and the often complicated relationship between author and subject, wondering why this particular literary form is not more widely respected.

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.

In ‘Writing vs Life: A Delicate Matter’, we talk to a number of RLF writers about the challenge of re-using real life material in their work, the impact their writing has on their personal life, and where they draw the line on privacy.