Feb 19, 2010
Writer/comedian A. L. Kennedy lives and works in Glasgow and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. In 2003 she was nominated by Granta magazine as one of 20 'Best of Young British Novelists'. Her novel Day (2007), won the Costa Book of the Year Award. She reviews and contributes to most of the major British newspapers, and has been a judge for both the Booker Prize for Fiction (1996) and The Guardian First Book Award (2001).Her first book, Night Geometry and the Garscadden Trains (1990), a bleak collection of short stories, won several awards including the Mail on Sunday/John Llewellyn Rhys Prize, a Scottish Arts Council Book Award and the Saltire Society Scottish First Book of the Year Award. Other short story collections include Now That You're Back (1994) and Original Bliss (1997), and her novels include: Looking for the Possible Dance (1993); So I Am Glad (1995), winner of the Encore Award, which focuses on child sexual abuse and its consequences in adulthood; and Everything You Need (1999), the story of a middle-aged writer living on a remote island and his attempt to build a relationship with his estranged daughter. We met at the International Festival of Authors in Toronto to talk about humour, the buzz of post-suicide attempts, living as if you are going to die, self esteem, making other worlds, changing reality, fictional rehearsals, Buster Keaton hats, the physicality of great comic actors, storytelling and investing in lies, Lolita, Nicola Six, Shakespeare, Hamlet, Yann Kott, Benny Hill, Blazing Saddles, freedom and child molestation.