At Windmill we want you to get to know our authors as well as we do, which means meeting them when we do.
Our Introducing series brings the newest William Heinemann and Hutchinson authors onto the website, months before their books are due to be published.
This time it’s Dea Brovig, whose debut novel set on the coast of Norway is published by Hutchinson in November 2013.
When I was 13, I wrote a letter to myself to open on my 23rd birthday. I hid it in my bedroom, together with a diary and mortifying poetry that I intend to burn if ever my mother releases it from her protective custody. I was 25 when finally I opened the letter, having rediscovered it that Christmas while visiting my parents in Oslo. Instead of the descriptions of teenage trials that I had expected, it was full of questions. One bothered me. ‘Are you an author?’ it asked.
I was not, at 25, an author, although secretly I had continued to nurture the childhood conviction that I would be someday. At the time I was working for a book packaging company in north London, overseeing photoshoots of Action Men and Hornby trains and editing other people’s texts. Rent was too high to try to write professionally, work too demanding, I was either too tired or having too much fun.
I was 35 when Hutchinson made an offer for my first novel. When my agent told me, I danced. I did. The fact that they are such a distinguished publisher, whose list includes authors like Sebastian Faulks and Ruth Rendell as well as many impressive new writers, made a great moment even greater. I still can’t quite believe that it happened.