Rosie’s novel, “The Square”, set in an upmarket garden square in London, is a satire on modern middle-class morals and habits.
“I poke fun at the way people use their children to elevate their status, or their food choices, or the decor of their houses. And it is quite saucy, and we get to that quite quickly. I’ve begged my parents, who are both doctors, not to read it!”
Rosie’s first novel emerged after she found herself short of work, and she put herself on a writing course with the Guardian and the University of East Anglia. “I lost about five or six different contracts for columns and jobs in one year, which was careless of me. So I thought, ‘let’s do a novel’. I love journalism, and I think of myself primarily as a journalist, and it’s great that your story is printed the next day, but then, after that, it’s fish and chip paper, Like many hacks, I hanker after having a British Library reference number.”
“Writing fiction is like ice-skating. People think we hacks make it all up, but we don’t, we can’t. So that’s like clinging to the wall on the rink, you have to hold on to the facts. With fiction, you’re out in the middle of the rink, and can do anything, so it is a challenge.”
As a writer and broadcaster on the Arts, Rosie is adamant that independent festivals, like Ilminster Literary Festival, are critical to the country’s culture. “I’m the Chair of Hull City of Culture 2017. It’s the city of Andrew Marvell, and Philip Larkin; Stevie Smith was born there; even Roger McGough was at University there.”
Date: Thursday 1st June 2017
Time: 15:00 to 17:00
Venue: Best Western Shrubbery Hotel, Station Road, Ilminster TA19 9AR
Tickets: £12.00 including Cream Tea.