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Wales Arts Review Writer's Rooms | Tristan Hughes

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Wales Arts Review Writer's Rooms | Tristan Hughes

In the latest of their series taking a peek into the creative spaces of Wales’s leading authors, award-winning writer Tristan Hughes shows Wales Arts Review his cabin in the woods...

'When I was younger, I used to imagine writers’ rooms. They were romantic places; often housed somewhere in the nineteenth or early twentieth century, high up in garrets, along streets in bohemian quarters, around the corner from smoky cafes. I pictured them as repositories of long and marvellous accumulation – filled with great heaps of paper, piles of leather-bound books, a whiff of opium in the air, wine stains on the table. It seemed to me that toiling pens and quills must leave a kind of creative residue behind, a magic dust that settled over the years. But, like so many other imagined versions of a writer’s life, it didn’t quite turn out that way for me. My writing self has been more like a naked crab scuttling along the beach in search of shell. My books have all had different homes. There was a leaky caravan on Anglesey, a fishing shack in northern Ontario, an apartment in Minsk, and on and on. I’ve written in a lot of temporary rooms, but I’m lucky to be more settled in one now – for part of the year anyway. This room is in a little shack on the shore of a lake I’ve known all my life (my family has a cabin on the other side of the bay). In a way it is also temporary, but for other reasons: the shack is so rickety and ramshackle that despite (or possibly because of) my clumsy efforts at renovation, the winter snows could bring it down at any moment. The room will leave me before I ever leave it. There’s a nervous moment each time I arrive in the summer. Is the shack standing? Is it still there?'

Read the full article on Wales Arts Review

Hummingbird by Tristan Hughes is out now, while his short story collection featuring lakes and other watery landscapes in Canada and Wales, Shattercone, is forthcoming in May 2020.


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