Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Interview with Margot Livesey

From the first line, I was seduced by The Flight of Gemma Hardy by Margot Livesey. It was an enormous treat to be able to interview Ms. Livesey about her work, so read on to learn more about her, her new novel, and what she does when she's not writing.

What was the plot of your very first piece of fiction?

I think my first piece of fiction probably involved a princess and a dragon and perhaps a few dwarfs. My first published piece of fiction was based on my hitchhiking home at night after finishing my waitressing shift in a Toronto restaurant.

Do you have any writing rituals or routines?

Drinking coffee and using the dictionary as a kind of i-ching.

Was The Flight of Gemma Hardy the original title of your book?

My working title was simply Gemma Hardy but that felt a bit stark and didn't quite capture my sense of the journey Gemma is on.

As you were writing The Flight of Gemma Hardy, was there a particular scene or character that surprised you?

I was surprised by the character of Mr. Donaldson, one of Gemma's primary school teachers. And I was surprised by some of the people who help her later in the novel.

When you’re not writing, what do you like to do?

Walk, cook, read, look at art, travel and see my friends in London and Scotland.

Read any good books recently?

I am currently reading Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson and full of admiration. And my old friend Joe Schuster is publishing a wonderful novel in March called The Might Have Been. It's a wonderfully absorbing and intelligent novel.

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My thanks to Ms. Livesey for her time. Learn more about her and her book at her website and Facebook. See what others are saying about The Flight of Gemma Hardy by checking out the other blogs on the tour.


I'm thrilled to offer a copy of The Flight of Gemma Hardy to one lucky reader! To enter, fill out this brief form. Open to US/CA readers, ends 3/23.


  1. I love these interviews. Thanks for doing these.

    1. Serena, <3 you!! Thank you for saying so!!

  2. Seeing friends in London and Scotland sounds like a real treat to me! And I'm all about coffee while writing, too. Enjoyed this interview, and am intrigued by The Flight of Gemma Hardy!

    1. Meg -- I do hope you get a chance to read it -- so good!

  3. I am hoping to listen to Ten Thousand Saints very soon as well. This was a great interview today!

    1. Thanks, Heather. Ten Thousand Saints was new to me but now I'm v curious!

  4. Not only is Gemma Hardy on my TBR, but both of the books Livesey mentions are too. Great interview, Audra!

  5. I wonder how authors find some of those words they use - it's nice to see they keep a dictionary handy!

  6. I love to know what characters surprised an author as they were writing!