Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Author interview: Anne Peile - Repeat it Today With Tears
Having recently read Repeat it Today with Tears the author Anne Peile kindly agreed to answer some questions about the book. She sent me the answers as a written letter which in the day and age of email and twitter was something rather special.
In a nutshell the book told the story of Susie, a bright girl from a broken home who is destined for Oxford and a life away from her mother, sister and mother's boyfriend. But her obsession with her father tips over into a sexual relationship that destroys them both. The story is set in 1970s Chelsea and is described in such vivid detail you can picture the streets that Susie walks down as if watching back old cine film.
Thanks Anne for answering my questions and good luck with the next book. The way London of the past came to life on the pages of Repeat it Today was quite wonderful.
Q. Where did the idea come from for the story?
"The story came to me more or less fully formed though Susie does, of course, have some pretty august literary ancestors - from Ovid onwards."
Q. The old London you describe is so wonderfully done was it a world you knew personally or did you have to go and do a lot of research to be able to produce such vivid descriptions of 1970s Chelsea?
"I do know South West London fairly well, I also have a working background in 20th century social and cultural history which helps with contextual 'props, including issues relating to the hospital passages."
Q. Some of the scenes, particularly the intimate ones between Susanna and her father make difficult reading were they difficult to write?
"Overall, I did not find any particular scenes more difficult to write than others."
Q. Is Susanna a character you would use in another book? She was left damaged but had a lot of life potentially ahead of her.
"I do not think that I shall write about Susie again although I will certiantly revist Chelsea and that era - indeed the book I am writing at the moment has some SW3 locations."