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Member Spotlights

Member Spotlight: Nanette McGuinness

author Nanette McGuinness and an image of her book Magical History Tour: Marie Curie

Why is writing important to you and why do you think it’s an important medium for the world? To slightly paraphrase myself: “The best literature in translation offers readers the ability to turn mirrors into windows—to see “the other” with the same familiarity as readers see themselves. Books in translation help broaden and shape the minds, politics and policies of the voters, leaders, and global citizens of today and tomorrow. Translating literature, therefore, can be considered a near-sacred duty. Where else can one have such great influence and wield such a mighty sword? (Source, No. 78, Spring 2019)

What are your tried and tested remedies to cure writer’s block? 1) Just sit down and do it. 2) Take a walk. 3) Read, read, read! 4) Work on a completely different creative project. 5) Talk to a friend or colleague.

What is your favorite time to write? Late at night.

What’s the best piece of writing advice you’ve ever received and would like to impart to other writers? There are only a handful of stories in the world. It’s the details and delivery that make all the difference–and the author’s persistence.

What excites you most about being a writer in today’s age? The challenges of today’s market are actually part of what makes it equally exciting to be a writer and translator: there are so many different platforms and ways for artists to reach their readers, and so many ways for creators to do an end-run around the traditional roadblocks to access. Today’s readers are sophisticated, engaged, and informed, and they demand one’s best, which is a terrific recipe for high-quality literature.

Nanette McGuinness’s translation of Magical History Tour: Marie Curie, written by Fabrice Erre and illustrated by Sylvain Savoia is out now with Papercutz.