Interview: Caitlin Moran on the Working Class, Masturbation, and Writing a Novel

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An interview with the excellent Caitlin Moran about her new novel.

Longreads

Jessica Gross | Longreads | Sept. 25, 2014 | 13 minutes (3,300 words)

Caitlin Moran has worked as a journalist, critic, and essayist in the U.K. for over two decades, since she was 16. In her 2011 memoir/manifesto, How to Be a Woman, she argued women should keep their vaginas hairy, said she has no regret over her own abortion, and advocated for the term “strident feminist.” Moran brings the same gallivanting, taboo-crushing spirit to her debut novel, How to Build a Girl, which follows Johanna Morrigan, a working class teenager, as she navigates her way toward adulthood. Morrigan shares a few traits with Moran, from her background and career path to her obsession with music and masturbation.

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As I read How to Build a Girl, I pictured you laughing uproariously to yourself as you were writing it. But in the acknowledgments, you say…

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Month One

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So, December is not the month I recommend you start a blog. Whoa. Between illness and the holidays, I kinda drop the book for this blog, as it were. Don’t get me wrong, I am happy that I started re: read pages and I am looking forward to writing some more, but, not unlike the writing of my book, I underestimated the effort involved in maintaining a good blog.

Thank goodness for new years and fresh starts.

Welcome back, dear Readers, and Happy New Year!

Looking at how my first month went, I am going to revise the blogging schedule. Mondays will still be book discussion, but, for the time being, I am dropping it down to a bi-weekly update, with maybe a little commentary as I read to help keep the habit up.

So, please enjoy my take on a classic novel, A Christmas Carol, which you’ll find in the next post, and we’ll start fresh for 2014.

Christmas break

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I originally planned on keeping up the blog over Christmas week but now that it is upon us, I realize that I won’t be able to give re: read pages the attention it deserves and spend time celebrating the holidays.

So please come back on Monday, 30 December for re: read pages’ regular schedule and have a safe and happy holidays!

Little delay

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Hi, sorry there will be a slight delay in posting my discussion of Fifth Business. I hope to have it up later this evening, otherwise, I will do a double post on Wednesday.

Thanks for your patience,

BJL