All items: Simon Rae

As the child of bookshop owners, Simon Rae grew up knowing that running a bookshop might be his destiny. But the revelation that he would rather write books than sell them took him along a different path…
Once I start on a novel I write every day and become captivated by the way the story unfolds. Although as author I am notionally in charge, in fact I write to find what happens next.
I don't know exactly when I gave up pretensions to being a serious reader, but the crime and children's books scattered around my bed indicate my current diet; I justify them on the grounds that I write both.

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.

Does writing a diary contribute to a writer’s creative capital or squander it? Simon Rae, a diarist himself, considers the long and sometimes uneasy relationship between public writing and diary-writing — from Samuel Pepys to Karl Ove Knausgård.

Is writing a ruthless business? How much honesty is too much? Should you mine your own life for stories? RLF writers explore this literary quandary in 'The Splinter of Ice'.

The RLF takes an inside look at how writers navigate the shoals of literary genre, and how they really see themselves — despite what those book blurbs might say.

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