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Explore Essays and memoir

Notes on Craft

Colin Grant

‘Always I tell myself: yes, you transmit but do they, the readers, receive?’

Colin Grant on distilling truth in memoir.

Jealous Laughter

Joanna Biggs

‘She could not make me see my best qualities, but she could sit with me.’

Joanna Biggs on literary friendships between women.


Sigrid Rausing

‘What does the list tell us about the next generation or the state of the nation?’

The editor introduces the issue.

The Cloud Factory

Graeme Armstrong

‘There’s this paradoxical nostalgia where even though yi suffered, yi miss it.’

Memoir by Graeme Armstrong.

The University of Nigeria

Ike Anya

‘There is a sense of carnival mingled with outrage, especially for us since this is our first demonstration.’

Ike Anya on universities, financial cuts and student protest.

On Writing ‘Blind Bitter Happiness’

Adam Mars-Jones

‘When I was put on Granta’s first Best of Young British Novelists list in 1983, no novel of mine had been published.’

On Literary Celebrity

Caryl Phillips

Caryl Phillips on being chosen as a Best of Young British Novelists in 1993 and the nascent culture of literary celebrity.

On Judging Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists

A.L. Kennedy

A.L. Kennedy on being chosen for, and judging Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists.

On the Anxieties of Translation

Ned Beauman

Ned Beauman on his translation into Assamese, and where being named one of Granta’s Best of Young British Novelists took him.


Christy Edwall

‘The listless mind is one which defers rather than tries to bring about closure. There is always one more tab to open.’

Christy Edwall on listlessness in twenty-first century fiction.

Beyond Deep Throat | Part II

Saskia Vogel

‘Whatever porn is or is not, like dance it is rooted in the body.’

Saskia Vogel on the relationship between dance and pornography.

Sartorial Misdirection

Rosie Findlay

‘In clothes, I met strangeness with strangeness. They dressed me with a kind of distanced power.’

Rosie Findlay on fashion and religion.

Lucky Punk

Anouchka Grose

‘As evidenced by the Met show, everyone wants to be a bit punk.’

Anouchka Grose on the birth and death and rebirth of punk.

One Image

Timothy Phillips

‘I was in Sarandë as part of a journey across the entire length of the old Iron Curtain, from Norway to Azerbaijan.’

Timothy Phillips on the legacy of the Iron Curtain in Albania.