Edna O’Brien: “Some Men Like Fairly Trivial Women”

Kate Mossman at The New Statesman:

It is unusual to find a writer of 88 embarking on a dramatic change of style and taking pains to justify it, but O’Brien still cares what people think. The week we met, she’d won the David Cohen Prize for Literature, a major recognition of a lifetime’s work which has, for other winners, been followed by a Nobel Prize. But she is still stung by a New Yorker profile from October in which, over the course of 10,000 words, the staff writer Ian Parker took the decision to put under the microscope the colourful, heightened way she has told her life story. O’Brien remembered a preacher denouncing the provocative (some said “filthy”) The Country Girls in the pulpit of the church near her home in Tuamgraney, then burning it: Parker said no one in the village recalled the same. And her relationship with her mother may not have been as hostile as she’s made out, he suggested – Lena O’Brien speaks affectionately in much of their correspondence…

more here.