Saturday, August 08, 2009

The Diary: Sebastian Faulks' A Week in December; Lord Attenborough's art sale; Oubliette Arthouse squatters' Gormley homage; Nicholas de Jongh's Plague over England; Art for Africa
Friday, 7 August 2009
- The Independent

Any similarity is purely intentional
There was much speculation this week over the identity of the real life inspirations for the characters in Sebastian Faulks's latest novel, 'A Week in December'. Suspects include DJ Taylor and John Walsh, both of this parish.
You might say Faulks has form. Take the brilliant 'Engleby', one of his finest works, which seems to draw on his own early forays into journalism. The novelist was the first literary editor of this newspaper in 1986, and later the deputy editor of the 'Independent on Sunday'. In 'Engleby', the eponymous protagonist recounts being invited to work for a national paper. He refers to a news editor who people in the know suggest combines John Price and Tony Bevins, first news editor and first political editor of the paper, respectively. And Engleby has an interview with three characters not totally dissimilar to the paper's founders – Andreas Whittam Smith, Matthew Symonds, and Stephen Glover – except that the Gloveresque figure is dozing off. The real (and impeccably polite) Stephen Glover, a friend of the novelist, assures me he hardly blinked. Messrs Walsh and Taylor better beware.
Cross to The Independent online to read the rest of The Diary.

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