“I just knew I would be a writer. It just seemed the only sensible thing to do.” – Jane Graham
Despite that certainty, Graham was nearly 40 when she finally got started. “But then, my goodness, I never stopped.” A writer of children's and adult fiction, she also writes reviews for The Spectator and The Telegraph, two of the most prestigious British journals, and writes for BBC radio. She’s won numerous literary awards, including the coveted Whitbread Award twice.
Now the author of nearly 30 books, her first was a children's novel, A Long Way From Verona, published in 1971. It received the Phoenix Award in 1991 – recognizing the best children’s book published 20 years earlier that had not already won a major award.
Her Whitbread Awards were for The Hollow Land in 1981, and The Queen of the Tambourine in1991, and she's been nominated for the Booker Prize for God on the Rocks. Her short stories and children's fiction also have won many prizes, and in 1999 she was given the Heywood Hill award for a lifetime's contribution to the enjoyment of literature.
“I started to write as a child … when my mother would read me Beatrix Potter at bedtime,” she recalled. “Writing seemed such a sensible way to live and be happy.” How right she is.
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