ian mcewan study 1920

Novelist Ian McEwan: Writing is “a way of being”

“A secret, I think, can be fatal,” said acclaimed novelist Ian McEwan. “She died with her secret intact.” That secret McEwan is talking about was a personal one held by his mother: “She would give birth to a baby boy, and she gave that child away. The moment she gave that child away, I think that woman vanished.” He noted, “These things aren't resolved.” This dramatic storyline of a long-lost full brother is from the author's own life. Now, it's a subplot in his latest novel, “Lessons.” “My mother went with her sister with the baby, and gave it away to the strangers who had applied to the ad,” McEwan told correspondent Seth Doane. “And 60 years later, that baby turned up in our lives. That , I knew I had to write one day.” “Lessons,” the latest book by one of Britain's most successful living writers, features a plotline inspired by a secret McEwan's mother kept from him until her death: that she'd given up a baby brother for adoption. CBS News McEwan has made a of dreaming up stories. Usually, they start as inventions scribbled in a green notebook. “It has to be green,” he said. Why? “Every rationalist has a soft spot! It has to be a pen, has to be black ink. I'd never write in here in blue.” He said he's resisted “plundering his own life for plot-lines,” until now. McEwan, one of Britain's most successful living writers, is perhaps best known for […]

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