Displaying items by tag: the palace of curiosities - Rosie Garland
Wednesday, 13 March 2013 14:24

Mr Spock is dancing the Can-can

The countdown for the launch of The Palace of Curiosities has not merely commenced, it's gone from 'this month' to 'in a fortnight'.

Friends are aware that I'm excited. Like duh! Excited seems a mundane, workaday word to describe how I feel. This is bigger than every night before Xmas to a soundtrack of The Night They Invented Champagne with added adrenalin. If I get any more excited, I think my head will explode.

Close friends know the flipside; the part which is viewing the proceedings as calmly and dispassionately as Mr Spock examining an alien life form and pronouncing it fascinating.

That doesn't mean I'm indulging in false coolness, so desperate to conceal any engagement with joy that I shrug and say 'launch? Debut novel? Oh, I suppose so'. Nor is it the equally tedious self-flagellation of telling myself that I don't deserve it. I've worked damn hard to get to this point, so there.

Yes, I'm thrilled. At the same time I'm able to watch it all going on, and function calmly. Mr Spock dancing the can-can about sums it up.

* And while we're on the subject of Star Trek, I might as well come out as Geek and Proud. Friends have started referring to the novel as TPOC. Fellow Trek fans will appreciate the felicity of the acronym which, like T'Pau and T'Pol, is a traditional name for a Vulcan woman. This tickles me greatly.

Published in News

The Palace of Curiosities - BOOK LAUNCH

WATERSTONE'S MANCHESTER DEANSGATE

Wednesday, 27 March 2013, 7:00PM

Tickets £3, available from the shop or through Twitter @waterstonesMCR

Rosie Garland returns to Manchester Deansgate with her astonishing debut novel 'The Palace of Curiosities'. Set against the backdrop of a Victorian freak show, it is a magical realist tale to both disgust and enchant. Come and support a breaking author on her home turf for what promises to be a wonderful evening.

Further details: 0161 837 3000

http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/displayDetailEvent.do?searchType=2&store=346|WATERSTONE%27S%20MANCHESTER%20DEANSG&sFilter=1

Published in Gig List
Wednesday, 27 February 2013 15:40

Is that me she's talking about?

Great quotes and what they mean...

I've recently received some feedback from Sarah Waters about my upcoming novel 'The Palace of Curiosities'. Reading it is a bizarre sensation: disbelief mixed with tingling excitement. It's a good quote. An astonishingly good quote.

I've been sitting on it for a couple of months. I've been asking myself why I haven't been shouting it from the rooftops. What should I do with quotes like this one? Paste them over Twitter and Facebook? But of course, says my Inner Publicist. You'd be insane not to. You should be proud that a brilliant writer likes your work and has taken the time to say so. Well yes – I'm not a complete fool, nor am I weighed down with the sort of modesty which is as fake as a tan wipe.

I treasure Sarah's quote. It's amazing. But I am also aware that it's about my writing and not about me. Heaven forefend that I should ever become one of those folk with exceedingly high opinions of themselves who look down their noses at the mere mortals grovelling far below (we've all met 'em). You are hereby permitted to slap me hard if I ever show signs of heading in that direction.

Neither is her quote about every word I have written or will write. It's about this one novel. It's not permission to lean back on my laurels and scribble any old thing and chuck it at a publisher with a casual 'f*ck it, it'll do'.

So I shall keep my feet firmly planted on planet Earth.

Oh, and this is the quote.

"The Palace of Curiosities is a jewel-box of a novel, with page after page, scene after scene, layer after layer of treats and surprises. Garland is a real literary talent: definitely an author to watch."

Thank you, Sarah. Like you cannot imagine.

Published in News
Tuesday, 20 November 2012 16:30

The Next Big Thing

Ok: so I’ve done some guest blogs - for the fabulous Mslexia magazine (http://www.mslexia.co.uk ) amongst others. But I am new to personal blogging. So when the wonderful Michelle Green http://www.michellegreen.co.uk asked me to pick up the baton for The Next Big Thing, I thought, no time like the present to get started.

So here goes - answering questions on my forthcoming debut novel The Palace of Curiosities.


I will then tag five more writers who'll tell you about their 'next big thing' next Wednesday.


Where did the idea come from for the book?

The Palace of Curiosities is set in a Victorian sideshow. One of the main narrators is Eve, a woman entirely covered in hair. Abel, the other narrator, is also profoundly ‘different’ – but his difference is not obvious at the beginning. I’ve always been interested in people who don’t fit. What happens when they try. What happens when they don’t. I’m also fascinated by people who think they are ‘normal’, and what that whole concept of ‘normal’ is actually about. I guess this is the engine that drives a lot of my writing.


What genre does your book fall under?

It could fall under one of many headings – or none. I’m not a genre writer. Yes, it’s set in the 1850s, but I am not a ‘historical’ writer. It has murders – but it’s not a crime novel. It has some unconventional sex – but it’s not a bodice-ripper. And so on. It’s been picked up by the commercial fiction arm of HarperCollins, yet they are launching it as part of their ‘literary collection’. So, go figure.

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
I’m not in the least bit interested in ‘names’. I’d like folk who can act rather than simply pout at the camera or are This Year’s Thing. Neither do I want Tim Burton or Terry Gilliam anywhere near it. Yes, I am smiling as I type this.

What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
The Palace of Curiosities is told through the eyes of Eve, the Lion-Faced Girl and interwoven with the story of Abel, the Flayed Man - both freaks of nature, both searching for escape. It explores life on the fringes of society and traces their struggle for self-discovery on the boundaries of what is perceived as human.


Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
I’ll say right now that this whole experience is a dream come true. I am pinching myself on a regular basis. I have a gorgeous agent, Charlotte Robertson of Aitken Alexander Associates, and my publisher is the lovely Katie Espiner at HarperCollins. It’s out in March 2013. To say I am happy is the understatement of this or any other century.


How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?

Where do I begin? I’d been with a previous agent for twelve years, and had given him four novels. But however hard I tried (and did I try), however hard I worked on editorial suggestions, nothing seemed good enough to get through the door of a publisher. So – I’d pretty much given up. I decided, as a final fling, to enter this novel (and another of the four – but that’s another story) into the Mslexia Novel Competition 2011. It ruddy well won the darn thing, and the other novel was a runner-up. Great googly moogly.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Abel is a character who has been ‘with’ me for years. I tried to write his story in a previous novel (one that is firmly under the bed with no prospect of it ever being taken out) and couldn’t get it right. So, I started afresh. The inspiration I needed was reading about how ‘freaks’ were exhibited in the nineteenth century, in particular the story of hairy woman Julia Pastrana (billed as ‘The Ugliest Woman in the World’). She was touted round the USA by an unscrupulous showman – when she died he had her stuffed so she could continue to earn him money. Good grief.

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?
There is love, jealousy, violence, betrayal, secrets, lies, odd sex (as well as a bit of the ordinary), belly-dancing - and a lion who gets his revenge.


My five writers for next Wednesday are:
To be announced...

Published in News
Page 11 of 11

News and Events

  • April 2020 - The Night Brother, Must-Read Manchester
    April 2020 - The Night Brother, Must-Read Manchester
    Manchester Confidential chooses The Night Brother as a must-read Manchester novel!

    Dystopian classics to modern crime - Nine must-read Manchester novels

    “Fantasy, romance, sci-fi, comedy…we’ve got a genre for everyone
    There’s a very good reason Manchester is a UNESCO City of Literature, as we highlighted before its bid to join the prestigious network in 2017. Innovative publishers, diverse bookshops and a lively events scene make it an unrivalled literary melting pot.

    Rosie Garland’s The Night Brother is our historical highlight
    Ever the entertainer, Rosie Garland sung in post-punk band The March Violets and now performs ‘twisted cabaret’ as Rosie Lugosi the Vampire Queen. But she’s also a literary maverick with an array of essays, short stories and poetry to her name (much of which she also reads at spoken words events citywide) and three acclaimed novels. Her latest, The Night Brother, navigates themes of gender and identity through two siblings in Victorian Manchester. Rich and Gothic, it’s a must for fans of Angela Carter.”

    https://confidentials.com/manchester/dystopian-classics-to-modern-crime-nine-must-read-manchester-novels

    Written on Thursday, 16 April 2020 18:18
  • April 2020 - The Night Brother - Best Northern Read
    April 2020 - The Night Brother - Best Northern Read

    An unexpected & encouraging piece of news!
    Northern Soul has selected 'The Night Brother' as a Best Northern Read

    Desmond Bullen, Northern Soul writer
    “In days that can seem desolate and uncertain, there’s a lot to be said for windows into a better world and, ultimately, joyfully, that is exactly the view that The Night Brother by Rosie Garland affords. Not that its window seat is cheaply achieved. Far from it.
    Rooted with disbelief-suspending specificity in Manchester at the end of the 19th century, Garland’s novel blossoms compellingly from the exquisite simplicity of its central conceit, one which owes the tiniest debt to the 1971 horror film Dr. Jekyll And Sister Hyde. Edie and her brother Gnome are joined in a very particular symbiosis, so that their singular sibling rivalry threatens to be the undoing of both. Themes that could be leaden in other hands emerge from the premise with a beautiful lightness of touch, developing into a persuasive fable of inclusivity and self-acceptance. This is a book that sings a rainbow at its end.”


    https://www.northernsoul.me.uk/books-best-northern-reads-part-one/

    Written on Thursday, 09 April 2020 15:26
  • 'What Girls Do In The Dark' - new poetry collection with Nine Arches Press
    'What Girls Do In The Dark' - new poetry collection with Nine Arches Press
    New collection forthcoming in October 2020 from Nine Arches Press

    I’m thrilled to be on the 2020 list of Nine Arches Press!
    I’m in the company of a fantastic group of poets. I couldn’t be happier.

    https://www.ninearchespress.com/about-us/news.html

    “Midlands-based independent poetry publisher Nine Arches Press, which achieved Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation status in 2018, will publish eleven new books of poetry in 2020, from a mix of established and emerging poets from across the UK and across the world…

    Acclaimed novelist Rosie Garland will also join the 2020 list in October with her third full collection of poems What Girls Do in the Dark, a book alive with galactic, glimmering energy. Rosie’s award-winning short and long fiction, poems and essays have been widely anthologised and in 2019 she was selected by Val McDermid as one of the 10 most compelling LGBTQI+ writers working in the UK.”

    Image: Poets confirmed for the Nine Arches Press 2020 list
    Top: l-r: Jennifer Wong, Rishi Dastidar, Abegail Morley, Geraldine Clarkson, Nina Mingya Powles.
    Bottom: l-r: Peter Kahn, Maria Taylor, Gregory Leadbetter, Rosie Garland, Kate Fox

    Written on Saturday, 08 February 2020 14:20
  • 11th & 12th January 2020 - Bhubaneswar Literary Meet & Mumbai Spoken Fest
    11th & 12th January 2020 - Bhubaneswar Literary Meet & Mumbai Spoken Fest

    I’m deeply honoured!
    The British Council has invited me to read, perform, and present workshops in India…
    I’ve been invited to TWO exciting literary events: Bhubaneswar Literary Meet (11th January 2020) AND Mumbai Spoken Fest by Kommune (12th January 2020).

    I can’t wait – not only for the opportunity to share my work in India for the first time… but to meet so many inspiring writers!

    Written on Monday, 23 December 2019 14:19
  • 10.8.2019 - Val McDermid's 10 most compelling LGBTQI writers in the UK today
    10.8.2019 - Val McDermid's 10 most compelling LGBTQI writers in the UK today

    I’m thrilled to announce that Val McDermid has selected me as one of the 10 most compelling LGBTQI+ writers working in the UK today!

    Val said: “These writers are writing for everyone. These are not words for a niche readership. These are not writings for a ghetto. These are the works of writers who have something to say that can be – and should be – heard by as many people as possible.”

    She continued: “Auden was wrong when he claimed “poetry makes nothing happen”. Words do change the world, reader by reader. They open our eyes, they provoke thought. The work of these 10 writers… will awaken in us fresh delight in the wonder of words.”

    The list was commissioned by the National Centre for Writing and British Council, supported by Arts Council England as part of a two-year programme to promote writing from the UK to an international audience. It also includes the amazing Colette Bryce, Juno Dawson, Juliet Jacques, Keith Jarrett, Kirsty Logan, Andrew McMillan, Fiona Mozley, Mary Paulson-Ellis & Luke Turner.

    The Guardian - The Word Is Out. Val McDermid selects Britain's 10 most outstanding lgbtq writers

    Written on Wednesday, 14 August 2019 08:44