Allison Pearson, named Critic of the Year and Interviewer of the Year in the British Press Awards, is a columnist in the Daily Mail and a member of the BBC's Newsnight Review panel. She lives in London with her husband, the New Yorker writer Anthony Lane, and their two children.
Her novel I Don't Know How She Does It, published in 2002, has sold four million copies and has been made into a movie of the same name starring Sarah Jessica Parker. I Think I Love You, her second novel, was published in 2010. A sequel to I Don't Know How She Does It was announced in 2015.
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An Interview with Allison Pearson
your first novel. What made you decide to write it?
I read a Stress Survey in Good Housekeeping magazine two years ago. It said that all that most working women wanted for Mother's Day was a bit of time to themselves. It also said they were too tired to have sex with their husbands and felt they were failing both at work and as a parent. I thought about my life and the lives of my friends with young children and I realized we were all being driven crazy by the pressure we were under juggling work and family. I thought it was a great subject - borderline farce, but full of incredibly poignant moments as you find yourself torn between responsibility to your children and the office. I wrote an article about working mothers in my opinion column in the London Evening Standard and I got literally hundreds of letters from women, all saying: That's My Life! It felt as though I'd opened a small door onto a parallel world and on the other side was this huge amount of unacknowledged feeling.
Then, I attended a discussion on work-life balance at the London Business School and the professional women in the room started to share their stories. One lawyer stood up and ...
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