Category writers

Vale Professor Jill Roe, writer and historian

Emeritus Professor Jill Roe died recently (12/01.2017). One of the highlights of her work was to produce a substantial biography of Stella Miles Franklin, the author of My Brilliant Career, who herself  left a legacy that’s remembered every year in the Miles Franklin Award for Australian Writing and the more recently established Stella Prize for Women’s […]

Interview: French Writer Marie Darrieussecq

Today I was reminded of this interview with Marie Darrieussecq about her novel Tom is Dead. She is a guest at the forthcoming Sydney Writers  Festival. So following the previous blog post on writing in dark territory, here is another in a similar vein – writing about the death of a child. Here’s a link […]

Writing in Dark Territory: a conversation with Helen Garner and Anne Manne

Here is a video recording of the excellent conversation I moderated with writers Helen Garner and Anne Manne. They  have written on some of the darkest aspects of the human experience: murder, violence against children, and the contemporary culture of narcissism. In conversation with me for La Trobe University’s Ideas and Society program, they discuss why […]

Talking Tolstoy with Jay Parini.

On the road with my Bloodhound, it’s hard to think of anything else. Apart from trying to work out what my next book might be about. Time then to revisit a conversation that’s from my ABC Radio National Book Show from 11th October 2007. What fun. Ramona Koval: Jay Parini’s book The Last Station: A […]

A conversation with my editor on wishing people dead, niceness and honest writing.

Editor David Winter has a yarn with Ramona Koval, part 2 Posted on 15th April 2015 David Winter is the editor of Bloodhound, a new memoir by Ramona Koval. Here, David and Ramona continue their chat about writing, humour and moving on. You can read part one of this interview on an earlier post. DW: Bloodhound puts a lot […]

Remembering Günter Grass…

Truth shines up through the cracks 16 September 2006 The Age The idea of an author rarely matches the reality, but character flaws are still insightful, writes Ramona Koval. I WAS IN EDINBURGH A FEW weeks ago, working at the International Book Festival, and I was called on by my ABC colleagues to report on what […]

Vale Terry Pratchett: 28/04/48 – 12/03/15

Sir Terry Pratchett has died aged sixty-six , eight years after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. He spoke to me on 18/04/11 in Melbourne where he was particularly interested in conveying his feelings and thoughts about his illness and the idea of his impending death. Here is  the audio and below, a transcript of our […]

Vale André Brink, 1935-2015

News of the death of South African writer André Brink, who died at the age of seventy-nine on a flight from Belgium after being awarded a honorary doctorate. He was still teaching Literature at the University of Capetown. When I last interviewed him, he talked about his book A Fork in the Road. The memoir draws […]

Vale Colleen McCullough, 1/6/1937 – 29/1/2015

Writer Colleen McCullough, one of Australia’s most successful writers of popular fiction has died  at the age of seventy-seven. The Thorn Birds which was published in 1977 was her most well-known work, but she was known too for her historical series on the Roman Republic and her crime novels too. Here below is my interview from 1995 which […]

Vale P.D. James – English crime writer, 3 August 1920 – 27 November 2014

P.D.James has died at her home in Oxford  aged 94. She was a very fine writer in her genre and a most delightful writer to interview. Here’s my last conversation with her,  conducted on the occasion of her ninetieth birthday, in August 2010. Ramona Koval: PD James’s first novel, Cover Her Face, published in 1962 when […]