Making an Elephant: Writing from Within

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Random House of Canada, May 4, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 416 pages
From the acclaimed Booker Prize–winning author of Last Orders, this highly personal book is a singular and open-spirited account of a writer’s life.

In Making an Elephant, Swift brings together richly varied essays, portraits, poetry and interviews, full of insights into his passions and motivations, and wise about the friends, family and other writers who have mattered to him over the years. Kazuo Ishiguro advises on how to choose a guitar, Salman Rushdie arrives for Christmas under guard, and Ted Hughes shares the secrets of a Devon river. There are private moments, too, with long-dead writers, as well as musings on history and memory that readers of Swift’s novels will recognize and love.

Making an Elephant is a book of encounters: between a son and his father, between an author and his younger selves, between writer and reader, and between friends. It brims with charm and candour, and reveals Swift’s alertness to experience and his true engagement with words.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - adrianburke - LibraryThing

I had largely given up on this author after 'Last Orders' but following my policy of picking up one random book each library visit I have changed my mind. I am really enjoying this and his insights into writers and writing. I will go back to his back list. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - booksx2 - LibraryThing

For anyone who read and liked WATERLAND by Graham Swift, a must read. Non-fiction including previously published articles, interviews (with Swift himself and with Swift as the interviewer). Talks about the process of writing and how 'place' becomes part of a piece of writing. Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Graham Swift was born in 1949 in London, where he lives and works. He is the author of nine acclaimed novels and a short story collection. His many awards include the Booker Prize, the Geoffrey Faber Memorial Prize, and the Winnifred Holtby Memorial Prize. Two of his novels have been made into movies and his work has been translated into over thirty languages.

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