Anne Fortier grew up in Denmark and emigrated to the United States in 2002 to work in film. She co-produced the Emmy-winning documentary Fire and Ice: The Winter War of Finland and Russia and holds a Ph.D. in the history of ideas from Aarhus University, Denmark. The story of Juliet was inspired by Anne Fortiers mother, who always considered Verona her true home . . . until she discovered Siena.
This biography was last updated on 08/17/2010.
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Join Anne Fortier as she discusses her first novel, Juliet, how she came to write it in English even though she's Danish, why she set her version of Romeo and Juliet in Siena when Shakespeare set his in Verona, and why her mother was exploring how to rob a bank in Siena to help with her writing
How did you become interested in writing a novel that supposed the famed Romeo and Juliet actually came from Siena, Italy rather than Verona? What was your starting point for the novel?
As soon as I set foot in Siena in March of 2005 I knew I had to set a novel there. Even for a European the place is spellbinding with its medieval architecture and fascinating history. I was there with my mother, and I remember walking around next to her with a notepad, gathering juicy bits and pieces and wondering how to construct a story around the Tolomeis and the Salimbenis two feuding families that lived in Siena in the late Middle Ages. Then, out of the blue, my mother came across the amazing fact that the first version of Romeo & Juliet was set right there in Siena, and not in Verona. It was published in Italy in 1476 by a writer called Masuccio Salernitano, and although the story went through many hands and ...
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