Margaret Forster was one of the UK’s most prolific and respected authors. Born in Cumbria to working class parents in 1938, she published her first novel at the age of twenty two. Since then she has written 25 novels as well as 9 non-fiction titles – a mixture of award-winning biography and memoir.
Kathleen Jones, a biographer, poet and fellow Cumbrian, explores Margaret’s books against the background of her life – divided between the quiet hills of the Lake District and the busy capital city London; between the demands of a lively family, and her own writing career.
This book sets out to answer the questions readers most often want to ask. How did Margaret manage to sustain her career from the best-selling Georgy Girl, to the Orange Prize listed Over without doing any of the author events or publicity stunts that publishers expect? Where did the idea for Diary of an Ordinary Woman come from? How autobiographical are her novels? Did Margaret prefer writing biography or fiction? Was she a feminist? And above all, how did she accomplish the juggling act of family and career through a marriage that lasted more than fifty years?