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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Martin Amis: 'If I had a serious brain injury I might well write a children's book'

Best-selling, critically acclaimed British author Martin Amis has offended children's literature authors with his recent comments in an interview on BBC TV.

"People ask me if I ever thought of writing a children's book," Amis said, in a sideways excursion from a chat about John Self, the antihero of his 1984 novel Money. "I say, 'If I had a serious brain injury I might well write a children's book', but otherwise the idea of being conscious of who you're directing the story to is anathema to me, because, in my view, fiction is freedom and any restraints on that are intolerable."  
"I would never write about someone that forced me to write at a lower register than what I can write," he added.  
But in an angry blog response on her website, author Lucy Coats, whose books include the Greek Beasts and Heroes series and novel Hootcat Hill, called Amis's remark "arrogant twaddle" with an "implicit insult to those of us who do write children's books".  
And writer Jane Stemp, whose book The Secret Songs was shortlisted for the 1998 Guardian children's fiction award, and who has cerebral palsy, said: "I have brain damage ... So Amis couldn't have insulted me harder if he'd sat down and thought about it for a year. Superglueing him to a wheelchair and piping children's fiction into his auditory canal suddenly seems like a good idea."

h/t macleans.ca

1 comment:

chowdog714 said...

I find the ardent commentary to the authors remarks to be quite revealing in their fervor towards his lack of interest in writing a children book? Just because he gave a literary reason that was slightly intellectual in its content and to me opened the door for a much more detailed and cerebral discussion on the matter does not give the other authors the right to tear into him like a freshly killed zebra? Step back and examine the situation and ask if cooler heads might not prevail? Thank you.