Episode 112 - Kevin Sullivan: Part 5


The final part of Kevin Sullivan's conversation with This Writing Life podcast arrives after a slight delay for a summer holiday. We begin by asking whether Kevin has a typical writing day - a pressing matter given his long career as a foreign correspondent. From here we move through his creative process as a novelist (editing and re-writing) to the challenges of writing from the middle of a war zone. We also discuss his human rights work with the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), above all in identifying those murdered at Srebrenica.

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Episode 111 - Kevin Sullivan: Part 4


In the fourth part of This Writing Life's conversation with journalist and novelist Kevin Sullivan, we move away from his experiences reporting on the siege of Sarajevo to his writing career more generally.

Sullivan discussed his formative literary loves, his romantic ideas of the foreign correspondent, before delving into the reality of writing about conflict from across the world. He recalls riots in Korea and finding himself in the middle of the Tiananmen Square massacre.

Part 5 of 5 to follow.

Episode 110 - Kevin Sullivan: Part 3


'It was the loudest explosion I’ve ever heard.' Kevin Sullivan begins part three of his conversation with This Writing Life podcast by remembering the landmine explosion that almost killed him while he was reporting in Gornji Vakuf, in the early days of the Bosnian war.

Having described his dramatic rescue, Sullivan recalls the revelation that occurred as he lay in a nearby basement with two broken legs: 'I was very conscious then that however dramatic this experience is for me these [Bosnian] people lying on the same concrete floor are not going to get taken away and given morphine and the latest medical treatment.'

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Episode 109 - Kevin Sullivan: Part 2


In part two of This Writing Life's conversation with the journalist and novelist Kevin Sullivan, we begin by asking why he travelled from Tokyo to Sarajevo in 1991 on the brink of the Bosnian War.

Sullivan offers his first impressions and a brief comparison of the city before the siege began, 25 years ago. 'It was such a great place to live.'

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Episode 108 - Kevin Sullivan: Part 1


Our next guest on This Writing Life podcast is the journalist and novelist Kevin Sullivan. His latest novel, The Longest Winter, is set during the siege of Sarajevo, which began almost twenty-five-years ago to the day in April 1992. Sullivan covered the conflict as a journalist, and almost lost his life in the nearby town of Gornji Vakuf, when the Land Rover he was travelling in hit a landmine. Sullivan began The Longest Winter shortly after, whilst recuperating in Glasgow, but it would take many more years for the final story to be completed. Keep reading →