Sebastian Faulks was born on 20 April 1953 and was educated at Wellington
College and Emmanuel College, Cambridge. He was the first literary editor of
The Independent and became deputy editor of the Independent on Sunday
before leaving in 1991 to concentrate on writing. He has been a columnist for
The Guardian (1992-8) and the Evening Standard (1997-9). He continues
to contribute articles and reviews to a number of newspapers and magazines. He
wrote and presented the Channel 4 Television series 'Churchill's Secret Army',
screened in 1999. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.
His first novel, A Trick of the Light, was published in 1984. His other novels include The Girl at the Lion d'Or (1989), set in France between the First and Second World Wars, and the bestselling Birdsong (1993), the story of a young Englishman called Stephen Wraysford and his harrowing experiences fighting in northern France during the First World War. The main narrative is intercut with scenes from the life of Stephen's granddaughter, Elizabeth, a young woman living in the 1970s who travels to France to discover more about her grandfather's life. The Fatal Englishman: Three Short Lives (1996) is a multiple biography of the lives of the artist Christopher Wood, airman Richard Hillary and spy Jeremy Wolfenden.
His fifth novel, Charlotte Gray (1998), completes the loose trilogy of books about France with an account of the adventures of a young Englishwoman who becomes involved with the French resistance during the Second World War. A film adaptation of the novel, starring Cate Blanchett, was first screened in 2002. His next novel, On Green Dolphin Street (2001), is a love story set against the backdrop of the Cold War. In 2005 he published Human Traces, a book set in the 19th century, telling the tale of two friends who set up a pioneering asylum. In 2006 Pastiche (a collection of parodies and pastiches, mostly from BBC Radio 4's The Write Stuff) was published in the UK. His next novel, Engleby, was published in 2007. In 2008, he published, Devil May Care, a James Bond novel commissioned by Ian Fleming Publications Ltd to mark the centennial of Fleming's birth. Faulks is also the author of A Week in December (2009) and A Possible Life (2012).
Sebastian Faulks was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1993 and appointed CBE for services to literature in 2002. The Tavistock Clinic in association with the University of East London awarded him an honorary doctorate for his contribution to the understanding of psychiatry in Human Traces.
He lives with his wife and three children in London.
This biography was last updated on 02/05/2013.
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Sebastian Faulks comments briefly on the structure of A Possible Life: A Novel in Five Parts
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