D and I have been away for the past few days, spending my birthday on the NC500, the route around Scotland’s three coasts (from above Inverness). Now we’re back, and I can share some things which appeared while I was mostly beyond the reach of navigable internet.
Welcome, Helen, and huge congratulations on the very recent publication of your first novel! Flesh of the Peach is an intense, candid story of a woman confronting grief, loss, and an, at times, harrowing childhood, and is set in New York, Cornwall and the American Southwest. Which parts of the novel did you find the easiest and the most difficult to write?
I think the easiest parts were the sections on how Sarah (my protagonist) would spend her money – they are flash-fiction fantasies inserted into the main body of the text, and not haunted overmuch by the more emotionally wrenching elements of the rest of the novel. The hardest parts were any of the ones I had to edit extensively, as I find editing the most arduous part of writing. So that’s every other section, really. It takes a long time to get it right, from feelings to getting characters to pick up a coffee cup.
Read more in the link above.
Next, make yourself a cup of tea for the Papertrail podcast interview, in which the host and I discuss three books I picked for examination + the line between whimsy and horror + how other works inspire my writing.
Finally – by the time this post goes live, tickets for the 2017 Edinburgh International Book Festival will have gone on sale and you can come along to see Meena Kandasamy and me in conversation with chair Lee Randall talking about our fiction on the 15th of August. Buy tickets for our event here!