Hugo Hamilton is a famous Irish writer. He published a memoir entitled The Speckled People (2003) which is based on his childhood experiences as the son of an Irish nationalist and a German woman.
"Writers are by nature scavengers, collectors, archaeologists, members of the forensic team picking over the scene of a crime (...) We write in order to find out where we are and what our story is. It is clear to me as a writer that nothing is made up. There is no such thing really as fiction, only events that have already happened in one way or another happening again in more and more fantastic ways through the imagination. What we do when we write is trying to keep up with our memory. So perhaps that is what Irish writing is all about, an exorbitant imagination. We are describing what is happening not only in Ireland but also elsewhere around the world as a way of looking in the window at ourselves, at home."Key questions:
1) Does Hugo Hamilton believe in fiction?
2) What is the part of imagination in writing?
3) How can writing help you understand your own culture?