You might also like:

‘Soon you’re writing articles of your own, furiously opinionated and probably ill-informed. You ask a local paper to print your words. They laugh at you.’

Pascale Petit recounts how the sudden re-emergence of her long-absent father triggered both a sense that she’d discovered the material for her new book, but also a complete inability to write it.

Penny Hancock explains how a professional setback and a series of personal losses led her to decide to give up writing completely - and how the unusual life story of an elderly relative provided two kinds of inspiration for starting again.

Martina Evans speaks with Julia Copus about her work as a hospital radiographer, the influence of dream lives, and why she’s said ‘no’ to fiction.