Happy Birthday, Michael Morpurgo, born 5 October 1943.
Michael Morpurgo answers your questions
- How many books have you written? Over one hundred. Private Peaceful was the hundredth. Sound a lot but that’s fat ones, thin ones. All sorts.
- Where do you write? On my bed where I’m most comfortable. I pile the pillows up behind me, settle back and write by hand with my exercise book on my knees.
- Are the stories true? With each one there is an element of truth. I weave different truths into the same story to make another kind of truth.
- What is the favourite book that you have written? The Butterfly Lion or Kensuke’s Kingdom or War Horse or Private Peaceful.
- Who’s your favourite author? Robert Louis Stevenson (Treasure Island), Rudyard Kipling (The Just So Stories) and Ted Hughes (The Iron Man).
- How long does it take to write a book? I usually spend several months dreaming it up in my head – I call it my ‘dreamtime’, the most important part of my story inventing when I try to weave the story together, do my research and find the right voice for the story. Once I begin writing, I write very fast and will finish a book in two or three months. Then revising it might take another month. So, on average, a novel takes upwards of 6 months to write.
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