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Paul Dodgson on his experience of learning Welsh as a second language and how it’s changed his appreciation of his mother tongue.
'Some are bemused, some boys think the whole thing is ridiculous. But for me, the rich, mellifluous word-music of Dylan Thomas spills into my drab winter morning like sunshine. In that moment, I learn the power of the spoken word.'
'I needed to learn that so much happens in the prewriting stage when the mind is working stuff out. I was sitting down to write like I was clocking on to a shift. I hadn’t played with the screenplay and was placing huge demands on this moment.'
'I leaned back in my chair and thought for a moment. I wanted to sound like one of the gang. ‘I’m busy being a producer’, I said, ‘but hope, at some point, to take a career break and dedicate myself to writing something. There isn’t time right now’. '
'When your father tells you how he ran home from the cinema in the Blitz, to discover his house had been bombed, make him tell you how he felt. Right now, you think there is always tomorrow, but stories can die too, if they're never told.'
At the age of fifty-two Paul Dodgson decided to follow a long-held dream and become a musician. Here he discusses the challenges he faced and how he found the courage to create and perform in a new medium.

Caroline Sanderson revisits her childhood home for the first time in five decades, to compare memory with reality.

Paul Dodgson takes us to Hythe on the south coast of Kent, drawn back to a place he was once desperate to escape.

Clare Chambers explains why the apparently prosaic location of the south-east London suburbs has been such a source of inspiration in her work.

'For every play performed, script broadcast or book published, there comes another, very public, rejection: the bad review. A good one can give you a warm feeling for half an hour, but a bad review — that can mess things up for ages.'
'Ultimately, life-writing needs to move outside the self if it is to find a place in the world; beyond the experience of catharsis for the writer, the stories must resonate with readers, who recognise them as their own.'
Paul Dodgson considers the dramatic potential in the ordinary, and how a seemingly insignificant moment can be the perfect entry point to writing a life story.
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