All items: Homer

Susan Fletcher explores the experience of outsiderhood, both physical and social, and its influence on her writing, and wonders whether readers, too, are increasingly recognising themselves in outsider protagonists.

Lucy Flannery describes how an idle moment on twitter led to her accidentally writing a novel, and how the process of doing so raised old demons about her right to be an author.

Are writers mad — or only very sane? Horatio Clare reflects on this conundrum, with relation to his own experience of mental illness.
I also aspire to read a play a day, which is unrealistic if you are a commissioned writer with a Netflix subscription, and a poem a day, which is more achievable.
Choosing books indiscriminately by weight as much as content, I wanted to find books that were heavy enough to keep me going until my visit the following week and I didn't risk wasting my precious allocation of books on something slim.
Duncan Forbes describes the challenges and consolations of translating poetry and how it can help us to gain an insight into earlier times, distant cultures and other minds.
I don't binge on authors. I am amazed by people who boast (there can be no other word) that they re-read the complete Dickens once a year. I couldn't do that. I am simply too slow a reader.

Mary Colson takes us to Olney in north Buckinghamshare, her childhood home and the site of an historic friendship between a poet and a slave trader.

Simon Rae takes us to Great Tew in north Oxfordshire, an estate village that began with lofty aspirations but descended to decrepitude.

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