The author explains how she made two attempts to introduce the central character before hitting on the final versionWriting The Blind Assassin was a start-and-stop process. My first idea was to write about the generations of my grandmother and my mother, which together spanned the entire 20th century. They lived through the first world war and the second world war, both of which made a huge impact in Canada. Canada went into the first war in 1914 and the second one in 1939, two months before my birth, and the percentage of young Canadian men killed in those wars was very high.The sense of loss is commemorated in towns across the country, almost all of which have prominent war memorials; which is why the erection of such a memorial is a central event in the novel. But neither my grandmother nor my mother was devious enough to take the lead in the novel I proposed to write, which involved quite a bit of lying. Neither of these women told lies; at difficult moments they changed the subject and talked about the weather. But my Iris Chase was predestined to be a liar, at least in matters that concerned her dead …read more

Via: The Guardian | Books