Episode 82 - This Writing Life Special: Gary Younge on 2016’s US Presidential Election


With a week to go before polling day in 2016's US Presidential Election, This Writing Life posts the first of two special 'Clinton-Trump' podcasts. The first is part of a longer and forthcoming interview with journalist Gary Younge about his extraordinary book, Another Day in the Death of America.

At the end of our conversation, I asked Younge for his take on Trump vs Clinton. Having spent well over a decade reporting on American politics, society and culture for the Guardian, he had plenty to say.

The rest of the interview will be posted later in November.

Episode 81 - DBC Pierre: Part 2


In his second This Writing Life podcast, DBC Pierre talks learning to write by remembering what he has read. For dialogue, he looked to Len Deighton.
Keep reading →

Episode 80 - DBC Pierre: Part 1


Part one of DBC Pierre's interview chat with This Writing Life podcast starts in media res. With a fan blowing our hair in attractive fashion (apologies for the whoosh behind the voices), we talked on a lovely summer's day at a London hotel. Pierre was in town to launch his new book, Release the Bats, an exuberant, personal and inspiring writing guide, with hints of memoir. A call-to-pen with hints about his colourful life. Keep reading →

Episode 79 - DBC Pierre Trailer: Does Writing Help (or: do writers need to be weirdos)?


The next guest on This Writing Life is DBC Pierre, Man Booker winning novelist, literary rogue and now writing guide supremo thanks to the excellent, ebullient, Birthday Party-quoting call-to-pens, Release the Bats. In this trailer, I ask whether writing ever helps him feel, think or 'be' better. Cue tall tales of a naked Thomas Wolfe fondling himself by a filing cabinet.

Episode 78 - Rosa Rankin-Gee: Part 4


Part four of Rosa Rankin-Gee's This Writing Life podcast interview opens with some bad pronunciation, some Borges, a little light reading and some Vocalzone throat lozenge chatter. Rosa really begins by examining the idea of imagining the worst things possible as a way of forestalling the worst reality possible. Keep reading →

Episode 77 - Rosa Rankin-Gee: Part 3


Part three of Rosa Rankin-Gee's conversation with This Writing Life podcast about her debut The Last Kings of Sark begins with love triangles, friendship triangles, family triangles, third wheels and intense feelings. Keep reading →

Episode 76 - Rosa Rankin-Gee: Part 2


Part two of Rosa Rankin-Gee's chat with This Writing Life begins with a discussion of the coming-of-age-story (in her case, debut novel The Last Kings of Sark). Keep reading →

Episode 75 - Rosa Rankin-Gee: Part 1


Rosa Rankin-Gee was one of the first guests on This Writing Life when the podcast was still a glint in its host's eye. We spoke ostensibly about her excellent debut novel The Last Kings of Sark but quickly widened the focus to the challenges of being a first-time and very young novelist, to sitting in large publishing boardrooms and sucking strange sweets. Keep reading →

Episode 74 - Rosa Rankin-Gee reads from The Last Kings of Sark


As a trailer for the next writer to face the onslaught that is This Writing Life podcast, Rosa Rankin-Gee reads from her debut novel, The Last Kings of Sark (Virago).

This was one of the first This Writing Life podcasts recorded, and remains a favourite of your host.

Part one to follow. You can learn more about Rosa at her website: here.

Episode 73 - Bill Clegg: Part 5


Bill Clegg ends his marathon appearance on This Writing Life podcast by talking about his (then) recent Man Booker longlisting for his first novel, Did You Ever Have a Family? Alternating between his twin literary hats - writer and agent - he talks the pros of literary prizes and literary culture in general. Keep reading →

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