I agree with… Michèle Forbes

Michèle Forbes “In retrospect, it was obvious it was something I knew and it had resonance. I was born there, grew up there, and I felt I had to reconnect with the place. I guess there is something of a preoccupation because I left; there is almost a guilt.”
[in an interview with ‘The Bookseller’ magazine, September 20, 2013]

[photo: Megan Forbes Roe]

[photo: Megan Forbes Roe]

Forbes was born in Belfast and her debut novel Ghost Moth is set in Northern Ireland. Although she was keen to avoid it being labelled as ‘a book about The Troubles’, she felt compelled to write about the place of her birth.

I understand the feeling that draws a writer homeward. One of the two key protagonists in my second novel Connectedness was born in Yorkshire and grew up where I grew up. I didn’t plan it that way, somewhere along the road of character development, writing exercises, putting myself into Justine’s head, I realised she came from East Yorkshire, like me. It was fact. That wild eastern edge of Yorkshire which juts out into the North Sea and is battered by the bleakest of winter weather shaped Justine as it shaped me. It drew me to explore how landscape impacts on identity, even when a person leaves home young the anchoring of childhood place shapes the way they grow as an adult.

Michèle Forbes


‘Ghost Moth’ by Michèle Forbes [UK: W&N]

If you agree with Michèle Forbes, perhaps you will agree with:-
Val McDermid If I published my first three novels now, I wouldn’t have a career
Matt HaigThe quickest way you could kill books in their tracks is to stop taking risks
Hanif KureishiWriting is an art, but it is also a business

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
I felt I had to reconnect with the place: @mforbesauthor on writing ‘place’ #writing https://wp.me/p5gEM4-w3 via @SandraDanby