Episode 96 - Matt Haig: Part 2 - It’s a Writing Life Christmas Special


Part two of This Writing Life’s special Christmas interview with Matt Haig (for his Christmas fable A Boy Called Christmas) starts with the magic of stockings at the end of the bed, continues as a litmus test of Haig’s childhood happiness and heads towards the Haig family rituals. There are memories of teenage bad behavior before a return to Christmas as seen through the eyes of Haig’s own children. Haig talks films (above all, It’s a Wonderful Life) and books, before we explore the ‘Father’ of ‘Father Christmas’. There are discussions about festivity and feeling good, commerce at Christmas and what presents mean. Matt talks about balancing light and dark in A Boy Called Christmas for American audiences, before we end with how to survive the most wonderful time of the year.

A new year part 3 to follow in 2017.

Episode 95 - Matt Haig: Part 1 - It’s a Wonderful Writing Life Christmas Special


Matt Haig has many and diverse talents. Children's author, Young Adult novelist, non-fiction bestseller, for his extraordinary book on depression, Reasons to Stay Alive. Over the past two years, he has added Christmas storyteller to his CV. First with A Boy Called Christmas (2015), and now a sequel: The Girl Who Saved ChristmasKeep reading →

Episode 94 - Rebecca Thornton’s Writing Life


In a postscript to This Writing Life's interview chat with Rebecca Thornton, about her debut novel The Exclusives, we talk about her writing life: loneliness, drawing the curtains during the day, chatting at the school dates, disconnecting from Facebook, procrastination, Massive Attack, writing with two young sons desperate to bthe laptop. Most importantly she answers the question: do you like writing?

Episode 93 - Rebecca Thornton: Part 3


Part 3 of Rebecca Thornton's interview with This Writing Life begins with a discussion of the Faber Academy writing course, which kickstarted the composition of her debut novel, The Exclusives. After some kind words about Esther Freud and Tim Lott (see part one for more about Tim), Rebecca talks about how the course works, including the terror of reading her romantic comedy in front of her class. Keep reading →

Episode 92 - Rebecca Thornton: Part 2


Part two of This Writing Life's conversation with Rebecca Thornton, about her debut novel The Exclusives, begins with a discussion of what perfection means to her characters. This is not something we know much about at This Writing Life. But anyway. Rebecca compares her feelings as a teenager to what perfection means to her today as a writer and mother. Keep reading →

Episode 91 - Rebecca Thornton: Part 1


Rebecca Thornton's The Exclusives is a debut novel: a thriller about friendship, paranoia, success and secrets set in an all-girls boarding school. This Writing Life didn't need a second invitation to talk to Rebecca at her publishers in central London. Keep reading →

Episode 90 - Rebecca Thornton Trailer: Thrillers, Catastrophes (and Motherhood)


Our next guest on This Writing Life is Rebecca Thornton, whose debut novel The Exclusives was published in paperback earlier this year. We talked in a glass-fronted meeting-room at her London publisher, twenty7. The setting played its part when I asked about Rebecca's decision to write a thriller packed with more menace, paranoia and betrayal than a game of murder in the dark at Trump Towers. 

Part 1 of 3 to follow.

Episode 89 - Neil Richards and Matt Costello: Part 3


Neil Richards, Matt Costello and This Writing Life bid adieu to Hotel Xanadu in the third part of their podcast about cosy mysteries, the Cherringham crime series and working as a writing team. Our final instalment begins with a brief discussion of one of their many sidelines: writing videogames. Keep reading →


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