I've always loved words. I used to have quotes on Post-Its around my room, lyrics scrawled on walls and notebooks, snippets from poems jotted down in a book full of sketches and scribbles. I still keep a collection of quotes like the one above from The Swimming-Pool Library by Alan Hollinghurst, in my head, written in the margins of research notes or tabbed in books with well-thumbed pages. Because I have hoarded quotes like gold over the years, many remind me of specific people or certain moments in time and take on a deeply personal and nostalgic quality. I have always been fascinated by that affective power of words, the way they make people feel things when they're put together just so.
Stories are never a one-way street, they are a dialogue between author and reader. Reception is tied to the way readers approach stories with their own experiences, preoccupations, desires and relationship to reading. I started writing, speculatively, because part of me wondered if I could wield words in a way that might one day mean something to someone else. I continued writing when I realised how much putting words together on paper means to me.