Tana French grew up in Ireland, Italy, the US and Malawi, and has lived in Dublin since 1990. She trained as a professional actress at Trinity College, Dublin, and has worked in theatre, film and voiceover.
Her novels include In The Woods, which won the 2007 Edgar Award for Best First Novel; The Likeneness (2008), Faithful Place (2010), and Broken Harbor (2012).
This biography was last updated on 07/10/2012.
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Q: How has your background in theater helped you create your characters?
A: When you get right down to it, writing or at least writing in the first person, which is what I do is basically the same skill as acting. For years, my job as an actor was to create a character hopefully a full, three-dimensional character and spend hours a day operating completely from her perspective, bringing an audience into her world. Writing is just an extension of that process. These days, my job is to create a narrator and see everything through her eyes, filter it through her perceptions and describe it in her voice, so I can draw readers into her world. I play my narrator on paper, rather than on stage, but the mental process is the same. Writing scenes with a lot of characters gets complicated I have to 'play' all of them at once, juggle all their perspectives and motivations in my head but it's still that same skill. I keep meaning to e-mail my old acting teacher and thank him!
Q: Are any of the characters in The Likeness based on anyone you know?
A: No, I don't base characters on real people. As soon as you do that, you're limited by what you know about the real ...
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