New Writing South interview with Spotlight author Elizabeth Ridout

New Writing South interviewed each Spotlight author about their relationship with the written word. Elizabeth Ridout is the author of Summon.

Is there a writer you particularly admire, and what about it is powerful to you?

I really love artists and writers who go out and disrupt and disturb the status quo. I’ve always really loved the idea that ‘art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable’, and most of the writers I particularly love do this with huge grace. I love Sylvia Plath and Patti Smith so much I have tattoos of them both.  Kate Tempest, John Cooper Clarke, William Burroughs, the Beats, Carol Ann Duffy, Stevie Smith, Ginsberg, Ezra Pound, Rimbaud, Audre Lorde, Zadie Smith, Anne Sexton, Rumi, Genet. Shirley Jackson, Frieda Hughes, Leonora Carrington. To be honest, an awful lot of my inspiration comes from rock music and lyricists – I would like to be able to write the way Janis Joplin sings. Kate Bush, Jim Morrison, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan. I am a Bowie obsessive – I have a Bowie tattoo as well! The most powerful thing in the world to me is the ability to express yourself without fear of judgement, and all these people have this in common in their writing and their personas.

Read the full interview HERE.