I can remember being in my pram: children stayed in their prams much longer then than they do now. A big bouncy pram with black covers and a hood with metal clips that could trap your fingers. I was looking up at my sister who was sitting on the pram seat, with her back to me.
It is a violation which has obsessed the tyrants of the twentieth century. They do not want simply to kill their opponents, but to liquidate them, to deny that they have ever existed.
As individuals, we are shaped by story from the time of birth; we are formed by what we are told by our parents, our teachers, our intimates.
Mourning Ruby is not a flat landscape: it is more like a box with pictures painted on every face. And each face is also a door which opens, I hope, to take the reader deep into the book.
A novel, in the end, is a container, a shape which you are trying to pour your story into.
I hope that readers will tear through my books because they can't stop themselves - and then, maybe, read them again and find new things there.
My first collection of poems was published by Bloodaxe Books, which was then a very new imprint.
Poets go through a very tough apprenticeship in the use of words.
I would like people to come into my Dreamworld and then choose to stay.
If we understand the past, we are more likely to recognise what is happening around us.
I didn't choose Russia but Russia chose me. I had been fascinated from an early age by the culture, the language, the literature and the history to the place.
Writing poetry makes you intensely conscious of how words sound, both aloud and inside the head of the reader. You learn the weight of words and how they sound to the ear.
When you are young you don't always realise how full of doubts everybody is.
I enjoy research; in fact research is so engaging that it would be easy to go on for years, and never write the novel at all.
I concentrate on the lives of individuals whom the reader comes to know and feel with intimately.
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