Philip Hensher

 Here are some facts about Philip Hensher:

He was among Granta’s 20 Best of Young British Novelists in 2003.

His 2008 novel The Northern Clemency was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Commonwealth Prize.

His novel Scenes From Early Life (2012) is told in the form of a memoir and has photos in it.

He writes with no disturbances. No phone. No computer. No television.

Looking at the photograph of where Hensher writes, it’s obvious that he doesn’t have a desk.

In an interview with The Guardian Hensher said:

“I’ve never written successfully at a desk – whenever anyone tries to give me a desk, it always fills up immediately with old bits of paper, and, after a week or two, I go back to writing on the end of the dining table, clearing it all up before dinner. Or, more often, just on the arm of the sofa…A sofa, a notebook, and the promise to yourself that in a couple of hours you can put Radio 4 on – that’s just the ticket.”

 

Philip Hensher

Photographer: Eamonn McCabe

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Anne Enright

One of the wonderful things about doing research for this  Writers’ Desks  series is that I always stumble about something new and interesting.

I found this delightful interview in Believer Magazine with Anne Enright, the author of the 2007 Booker Prize winner for her novel The Gathering. 

Do take the time to have a look at this magazine for more information on Anne Enright.

Here’s part of the interview:

BLVR: Your novels have a lot of ghosts. The characters are always bumping into the ghosts and the ghosts are bumping into the characters with no real explanation. American writers don’t do that so much.

AE: My ghosts are more like metaphors. They’re like, just words. They vary hugely in their metabolic content—how physical they are or how real they are or how visible they are in the sentence or the room. All of these things are up for grabs, really. Some of my ghosts are corpses in the room. The thing that won’t go away. Whatever it is, in whatever form. That’s the ghost.

BLVR: That headrest in Veronica’s car, in The Gathering. That was a great ghost.

AE: Yeah. He’s a ghost. I looked out the window one day and there was the car. Martin, my husband, had put the seat forward to get something out of the backseat. But when I saw it I thought something catastrophic had happened in the car. It looked like a body with its head on the dash. Suddenly I thought someone had died in the car. It was just peripheral. Just a little flicker. But then I had to check. And, of course, it wasn’t a dead body, it was just the seat.

Here’s her office with a Philippe Starck “Louis Ghost” chair.

Anne Enright's writing room

Photographer: Eamonn McCabe

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Will Self

Will Self’s writing is diverse. Dystopian (The Book of Dave), Stream of Consciousness – think James Joyce’s Ulysses (Umbrella), and satire (Great Apes).

He has won many awards, has been short listed for the Man Booker prize for Umbrella (2012)  and the New York Times Notable Book of the Year for his collection of short stories Grey Area ( 1997).

Consider yourself in good company if, like Will Self, you like to use post it slips to keep track of your writing. If, like Will Self, your creativity thrives in a cluttered environment. 

Will Self

Photographer: Eamonn McCabe

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