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Elleke Boehmer

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

birth stories

Isn´t it interesting how few stories there are out there about children coming into the world, written from the mother´s eye view? Is this because of the fabled amnesia women are meant to suffer regarding the birth process. (Btw, I don´t really believe in the amnesia myth.) My Nile Baby starts with a kind of birth yes, but the baby is rather unusual, and looks to have been born before. For real live birth stories which also fill a major gap in the book market – excuse the pun – see the new book of Birth Stories out from Jacana this month!

Writing Risks

In my new novel Nile Baby, just out, I’ve taken some to me new risks in writing – drawing on West African myth to interpret women’s hunger for babies, and also baby loss in Britain; writing about children and from a child’s eye view for the first time. Creating experiential interfaces between Africa and England – that was a challenge in particular. I wonder whether others out there feel similarly preoccupied, overexcited, anxious and afraid when striking out on new writing pathways.