A peek into the endless universe of fanfiction
In front of an audience of young aspiring writers, Louise O’Neill, Irish novelist, unlocked her literary world made by powerful emotions and strong, resilient characters, where she was in conversation with Alice Torreggaini. From Gaia from The Surface Breaks to Emma from Asking For It, the author dived into the genre of fanfiction novels. Through the novels she read as a child, which included the Narnia series and the work of Enid Blyton, O’Neill grew up with the belief that the same book can be read in millions of different ways. With this conviction, O’Neill dived into the world of her favourite fairy-tale, The Little Mermaid, to create the story of The Surface Breaks, where the young protagonist Gaia tries to find her place in the world by breaking free from her father.O’Neill described how she writes her novels and creates her literary universes. Starting from the general idea of the book, she focuses on the most distinct element of her writing: the character. O’Neill explained how she comes up with an imaginary questionnaire to which each one of her characters has to go through in order to define their motivations, their passions and personality. This is how Emma, the protagonist of O’Neill’s novel Asking For It, was created. A vulnerable teenage girl with a spiky personality whose life changes completely after a sexual assault at a party. Emma will face the scars of this devastating event in an authentic story in search of resilience.