Wednesday, 12 December 2012

'The shimmer of fiction'

Wonderful interview with Edna O'Brien here, who at eighty-plus is still captivating. She says she found her memoir much harder to write than her novels and that 'memoir must have the shimmer of fiction', which is just gorgeous. (I've remembered that my friend's mum - Bernard MacLaverty's wife - said The State of Me reminded her of The Country Girls when she first read it a few years ago.)

And this is just so beautiful and inspiring, children in Paraguay playing cellos and violins that have been recycled from landfill. One of my nephews is getting a violin for Christmas, so this resonated even more. The clip is a teaser for the movie 'Landfill Harmonic'.

And, last but not least, the ME Association is raising money to educate GPs about the illness, you can donate until the 18 December. Please do so if you can. There is still much misinformation flying around - with the shimmer of fiction, you could say - thanks to the opposite of science that abounds in the UK. How can it be that thirty years on from my own diagnosis, there is more obfuscation and lack of clarity than ever?!


Crafty Green Poet said...

I can imagine a memoir being much harder than a novel, I love the quote 'shimmer of fiction'

I love the recycled musical instruments too

Digitalesse said...

Yes, I can see the parallels between The State of Me and The Country Girls (although O'Brien's Mr Gentleman was a bit too creepy for my liking). I tell people that The State of Me is not so much a story about illness but about the issues relevant to young women. I have met women from Ireland, a generation older than us, who talk about Edna O'Brien's novels as reflecting their passage into young womanhood. I'm no lit crit but they are both great reads.

nmj said...

Hey Crafty, yes, 'shimmer of fiction' is just lovely, though I don't agree that memoir is harder than a novel, I think it is a different craft, at least, literary memoir... the number of celeb memoirs out just now is so depressing, the usual festive splash, I have no desire to read any of them.

Hey Dig, There is no higher praise than 'a great read', thank you. Is so very long since I read The Country Girls, I would be ill-equipped to comment on it! Also, I am sorry you are still in relapse hell, I just read your recent blog posts.