One Minute With: Salley Vickers, novelist
Saturday 10 November 2012
Where are you now and what can you see?
I am in Cambridge looking out at the lovely gardens of my old college Newnham, waiting for a student to show me her work.
What are you currently reading?
Allan Massie's excellent book about the Stuarts; 'The Way the World Works' by Nicholson Baker - a voice of sanity and courage… and I am re-reading Samuel Schoenbaum's... life of Shakespeare. He's very sane, gives you all the legendary guff and then calmly debunks it.
Choose a favourite author and say why you admire her/him
Shakespeare but, nearer to home, Marilynne Robinson... Everything she writes feels true to the bone.
Describe the room where you usually write
High up with a view across London to Canary Wharf and the Shard... birds wheeling in the sky to take me into other worlds.
Which fictional character most resembles you?
Mole in 'The Wind in the Willows'
Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?
Gandhi for one; Desmond Tutu another; Anne Frank… and I have a very great fondness for Socrates. In other words, people who stand up, without violence, for freedom of expression.
Salley Vickers's 'The Cleaner of Chartres' is published by Viking
Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites
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Arts & Ents blogs
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- 2 Christmas comes early to Hong Kong, as millions of bank notes spill out onto busy street
- 3 Antonio Martin shooting: Police and protesters clash over teenager's death just five miles from Ferguson, Missouri
- 4 Northern Lights above Britain: Stunning Aurora Borealis illuminates Northumberland sky on Christmas Eve
- 5 British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Christmas Day TV guide 2014: What to watch from Strictly Come Dancing to the story of Frozen
Felicity Jones on being Stephen Hawking's wife in The Theory of Everything: 'I didn't want her to be a saint'
Best underrated Christmas movies: From Trading Places to While You Were Sleeping
Game of Thrones season five: First preview clip shows a beardy Tyrion, a moody Cersei and a distressed Arya
The Interview is finally released after Sony hack and terror threats – but reviews of North Korea satire are mixed
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food