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Then I obviously didn’t understand what it all meant, but I do now.
– Louise Brown
Sometimes I like to play the soundtracks to famous musicals so we can all sing along. South Pacific is one of my favorites. Our neighbors must hate us.
People still come up to me and ask whether I am Louise Brown or if they’ve seen me somewhere else before.
The richest most meaningful stories are found in small places: made, carried, crafted, told, and retold by apparently unimportant people.
Every year I teach dozens of students at the University of Birmingham. Most of the students on the gender and sexuality courses are women. I guess this is because the boys don’t think that gender applies to them: that it’s a subject for girls.
I can’t pick out one single book that had such a profound personal impact.
Remember that what you have is unique because it’s your own special way of looking at the world.
Reading is my greatest luxury.
The young women in my classes are feisty and clever and believe, often with the passion of youthful optimism, that feminism is a battle already won. I worry for them – and for my daughters, too.
I bought a selection of short, romantic fiction novels, studied them, decided that I had found a formula and then wrote a book that I figured was the perfect story. Thank goodness it was rejected.
When dad told me Mr Steptoe had passed away, I broke down.
I never felt any different from anyone else though.
I could write an entertaining novel about rejection slips, but I fear it would be overly long.
The Dancing Girls of Lahore was offered to dozens of British publishers and was turned down by everyone. It is still on offer in the U.K., but I’m not confident there will be any takers.
I’m working on a nonfiction book on Nepal and a novel about diasporas.
It took a brave editor in the U.S. to sign a contract for Dancing Girls, and without her belief in the book, I’m not sure it would ever have found its way into print.
I have a good collection of cookery books. This is not so much because I like cooking, but because I like eating.
Much of my reading time over the last decade and a half has been spent reading aloud to my children. Those children’s bedtime rituals of supper, bath, stories, and sleep have been a staple of my life and some of the best, most special times I can remember.
Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in.
The importance and influence of books on me has been cumulative: the result of hearing and reading lots of stories about interesting people and places.
If you can’t return a favor, pass it on.
I thought it was something peculiar to me. I thought I was abnormal.
I don’t envy men and I certainly wouldn’t like to become one now.
I like many types of music and probably too many to mention here.
I used to think about how I was conceived quite a lot when I was about 10 or 11, but I don’t think about it at all now that so many other babies have been born in the same way.
When I was a child and teenager I read whenever I had the opportunity, but since then I’ve found it hard to read as much as I’d like, children, work, and pets all providing powerful incentives to escape into a book and a practical reason why I rarely do so.