Being a writer usually entails a fairly quiet life. However much travel one might do, however many tours and appearances, the job entails solitude: long hours in libraries, long hours at a desk. I worked for many years as a writer for children, and then wrote two adult novels of the kind they call “literary” without any very great disturbance to this kind of life. Then something went wrong. My third adult novel was rejected by the publisher of the first two. And I could not understand the criticism offered. I was initially less cast down by this than I might have been because the book in question, Knowledge of Angels, felt to me the one I was born to write. The germ of it had been in the back of my mind for maybe 10 years and had got to me in a lecture about feral children. There I had heard of a child recovered from above the snow line on a mountain in 18th-century France and, according to the lecturer, she had been kept in solitude while she was taught to speak French, in order to discover if the knowledge of the existence of God was innate. I… Read full this story
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Once upon a life: Jill Paton Walsh have 280 words, post on www.theguardian.com at October 23, 2010. This is cached page on Gatofuns. If you want remove this page, please contact us.