All items: literary influences

Dipo Agboluaje speaks with Gabriel Gbadamosi about Britain and Nigeria, the big dreams of his characters and his knack of combining satire with character development, and the necessity for diverse playwrights to aim for the mainstream.

Leigh Russell speaks with Robin Blake about becoming a crime writer in her fifties, writing series books that can also stand alone, what readers want from her genre and her surprising crime-writing hero.

At school I used to swallow a book in the lunch hour, and now I can do two in that same time. It doesn't feel good. I race through them, unable to slow my reading speed down.
Most of the Victorians I loved have lost their shine, too, for me, except George Eliot; her luminous sense of justice and vision distinguish her. However, recently Hilary Mantel has begun to supplant her.
Let's face it. Basically, you're on your own, and ultimately, boringly, it's discipline isn't it? Fiction and non-fiction, the same rules apply.
Like her heroines, Rumer Godden refused to be packaged as one kind of writer, and smother her spark. I decided to follow suit. I would dream crazy dreams.
A concession to the Indian climate is the solar topi he is holding on his lap. Although the topi had become a symbol of British power, because it was worn to protect the delicate white man from the blazing sun it also signalled the white man's vulnerability.

Pippa Little speaks with Geoff Hattersley about poetry in her African and Scottish childhood, building a career as an early school leaver and her return to Higher Education, and her approaches to writing.