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tv   Meet the Author  BBC News  January 8, 2017 7:45pm-8:01pm GMT

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it has been a long time since richard cockerill was not a crucial presence here. leicester's first pre—match preparation without him for nearly eight years. the task was not easy — wasps have dominated at home this season and so the first score was hardly a surprise. christian wade with the opening try after just four minutes. in fact they put three past leicester before half—time. a fresh approach needed for the tigers‘ interim coach. that fresh approach was a direct one, tom brady was the first to speed through the middle, leicester eventually bundling over, and back into contention. wasps needed to mix things up and they turned to england forward james haskell for stability. after seven months out, his comeback lasted less than a minute, knocked out in a tackle with freddie burns, he was forced off the field. more injury headaches for the england boss. leicester threatened, butjimmy gopperth made certain for wasps once more, as they go to the top of the league. encouragement for leicester, but no sting in the tailjust yet. three time champion martin adams
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came from behind to beat fellow englishman ryan joyce 3—2 in the first round of the world professional darts championships. there was no dividing the pair so the fifth set went to sudden death and adams finished with a double nine to take the match. england's scott mitchell is also safely through to the second round. the second seed overcame new zealand qualifier mark mcgrath 3—0. england's lisa ashton beat sharon prins of the netherlands to reach the second round. the two—time lakeside champion looked comfortable and ended with a double five to seal a 2—0 victory. that's all from sportsday. next on bbc news, it's meet the author. we will leave you with some of the best moments from the third round of the fa cup so far. the american west coast has always
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seemed, for many people, a shangri—la over the horizon, all sunshine and freedom, the last frontier that's bound to be a happy journey‘s end. the poet adam o'riordan sets his collection of short stories, the burning ground, on that golden coast, where lives collide in los angeles, a city that sometimes seems the most artificial in the world, but always casts its own mysterious spell. welcome. you describe, in these stories, something of the magic of california. what does that mean to you? i think to me it's always been a place that's had that potential, that distance, that sense of it sort of being on the very
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edge of the known world, or certainly the anglophone world. the space, the lights. you have a quote at the beginning of the book from christopher isherwood, which is very striking, and he uses the word "untamed" about california. yeah. on the one hand it's the home of silicon valley, it's high tech, it's got hollywood, it's everything, it's the most advanced place on earth in many ways. yet there is this elemental feeling about it. i think it's the way in which those things are all within striking distance. so you can be at the very centre of the city, you can be downtown, but in an hour's drive, you can be in the desert or you can drive up to malibu by the ocean, and you're constantly reminded, as isherwood mentions in that quote, you're constantly reminded of the elemental, the vast, you feel the pull of those primal things all around you. i remember very clearly the first night i'd spent in los angeles, in venice. i had terriblejet lag and i remember walking down to the beach and standing there as the sun, as the mist was burning off and the sun
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was coming up and looking around and seeing two or three drifters there beside me. this huge sense of potential, of... i suppose it was sort of the opening up of the space inside of me, as well. the sense that once i was there, i could think about things differently. i could go from writing poems to writing stories, to writing longerform prose. it felt like there was so much space there. as you mention, you're a poet by background, young though you are. that's right. goodness me, you spent a year as poet in residence with the wordsworth trust. that's right, yeah. in the lake district, which is about as poetic as you could imagine. that's right. you've turned, in this volume, to the short story form. yeah. what do you think it allows you to do? i think it was the place, again, that dictated the form. so when i was in the lake district at the wordsworth trust, i wrote a lot of sonnets, which were strangely in themselves like little short stories. then when i got to los angeles and started spending more time there, i felt like the short story was the form in which i could invent, as well.
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i was thinking about this earlier on the way here, i think one of the things that really drew me to it was this idea that you can, the idea of invention, the idea of making these counterfeit, these details of lives. there is a wonderful freedom to that. when you're sort of tethered to the lyric eye of being a poet, when you get that freedom to invent, that freedom to find the details in people's existences... i suppose if you're writing a sonnet of 14 lines, a short story seems as if you've got the whole world? yeah, but interestingly the sonnet and the short story have the same thing in common, which is you can change something and get a complete overview, whereas if you're writing a novel, you can't really see the change that makes until right the way through. so you can fix both things in a day, as it were. the other device, i suppose, that's very obvious in this collection is one of the short story writer's favourite ones, where lives collide almost unexpectedly. yeah. there's always a sense of discovery, and you can have that moment of collision that's really very dramatic. absolutely. i guess in the same way you are in a filmic mode, you're thinking about the most
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intense moments in these people's lives, essentially. that gives you a sort of license. you can think, how do you condense a whole life to five or six key moments or regrets, or things they didn't do, places they didn't go, and then how do those things, what are the ramifications of those things, through these peoples‘ lives? in the very first story a man goes to california to meet his, i suppose we'd call it his online lover. that's right, yeah. which is a very contemporary image. yeah. i think thatjourney itself, that sense of returning to meet a lover, that sense of going to another place but there being, finding that person has to leave and being alone there... i think it's a city that lends itself to that kind of melancholy as well, in a strange sort of way. it's this sense of a place where you can be easily lost, because it's so big and sprawling
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and unformed, well untamed, to use that initial word. but at the same time, it can be terribly intimate. there's a sort of power to it. absolutely. i think there's a sense of... it's in some ways, which is a very strange word to append to los angeles, but in some ways it's provincial. it's not at the centre of power, aside from hollywood power, it's not at the centre, and because of that you get all kinds of energies operating there. you get different moods, you get different reactions, different relationships. as a young man from manchester, as i am, was, that felt sort of familiar, weirdly. it couldn't be further from manchester, but in a way, there were these strange sort of similarities. it's also a place where you're allowed, in fact you're almost compelled, to be wacky. yeah. you can do anything, you can dress how you like, you can say anything, you can pursue some mad scheme. absolutely, and i was always very interested, in this book, to think about lives that had somehow been subjected to the major events of our era. the second world war, for instance, and how they then fit themselves into life after that. how you live in a place like that, once you've experienced something as profound as war.
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it's a natural subject for somebody who has got fundamentally a poetic impulse. you are teaching poetry manchester and obviously still writing poetry. a lot of people say that poetry is going through a pretty good phase at the moment. what evidence is there for that, that people are being moved by poetry? ithink, again, it's maybe a digital thing, this idea that people can share their poetry now, people can think about it more, they can write about it, they can find communal interest, they can express themselves. i think also it strikes me, the first decade or so, the very strict sense of genre or place, whether it's performance poetry or page poetry or poetry that is somehow linked to the visual arts, all of those things seem to have collapsed into each other, which makes for a very fertile, and fecund landscape for poets nowadays. a lot of the barriers have been broken down, i think. if you're talking about a contemporary world where there is a sense of drift, where people don't quite know where we're headed,
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after the economic crash, after 9/11 and so on. poetry, historically, has been the classic vehicle for distilling those senses, those feelings, those arguments. that's right, i think that's absolutely right. i think it has the political application, if you will, that sense that you can use it to protest, in a way, or at least to make your voice heard, to share your experience, to give testimony to things. you spent a year in the lake district, which is a great place just to walk and to think and to write poetry. do you find it easy to make time to let your mind wander, and to give time to that blank page or that blank screen? i think, yeah, the answer is you have to, with the poems you have to sort of let them amass quietly in the background, you have to let them pile up over time, and then sort of recognise when the collection is ready to be sort of tested, really condensed and made proper.
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but as long as you have something else to focus on, whether it's a book of stories, or a novel or teaching an ma course, then the poems can slowly pile up. annd you're confident that in the end they'll come good? fingers crossed! adam o'riordan, thank you very much. thank you. after some fairly benign weather this weekend, it gets a shake up this week. later in the week some flurries of snow. none out there at the moment. a mild night in store. very misty over england and wales. there will be changes later in the night, strengthening winds touching gale force and we finish the night with outbreaks of rain.
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maybe a touch of frost for eastern england. but a milder start. temperatures dropping in scotland. heavy bursts will clear, but it lingers elsewhere. northern ireland with rain first thing. gale force winds around the irish coast. it should be dry, fairly grey for most, a few brighter spells in east anglia. with south—westerly winds in the south—east corner, double figures possible. the sunshine will come out, and the temperatures will finish the day around 6 degrees. frequent showers, strong gusty winds, severe gales across the north of scotland for a time, temperatures lower than they will be this coming night.
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colder start to tuesday. a touch of frost in the south and east. cold on tuesday morning, quickly clouding over in the west, winds coming off the atlantic again. lots of cloud, lifting temperatures in wales and northern ireland. mild then to take us into wednesday morning, but then another change, the grey conditions clear away, sunshine and showers later. gusty wind. temperatures moving away from the highs early in the day. the cold air is back to finish the week, with it raw and icy winds. thursday, frequent snow showers. difficult to pinpoint where we will see them at this range and eventually after some rain in the south it turns colder here, as well. this is bbc news. i'm martine croxall. the headlines at 8pm. four israeli soldiers are killed injerusalem — after a man drives a lorry into them. 15 others are injured.
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cctv footage shows the lorry approaching. police say the driver was a palestinian who was shot dead at the scene. the prime minister appears to accept that leaving the eu is likely to mean leaving the single market. the former iranian president, akbar hashemi rafsanjani has died. he was seen as an influential moderate voice in iran. the queen appears in public for the first time since she was taken ill with a cold before christmas, attending a church service at sandringham. also this hour — the big freeze. parts of europe and the eastern united states are hit by a cold snap. more than 20 people have died in heavy snowfall and sub—zero temperatures that have also caused transport chaos.
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