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47 | A Chat With Emily Midorikawa & Emma Claire Sweeney

47 | A Chat With Emily Midorikawa & Emma Claire Sweeney

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Listen to Episode 47: A Chat With Emily Midorikawa & Emma Claire Sweeney

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Episode Summary

Today on Tea & Tattle, I’m joined by authors Emily Midorikawa and Emma Claire Sweeney, to discuss their book, A Secret Sisterhood, which describes the hidden literary friendships of Jane Austen, Charlotte Brontë, George Eliot and Virginia Woolf.

In their captivating book, Emily and Emma offer a fresh perspective on the lives of these famous women and show how important their friendships with other female writers were to their literary endeavours. As best friends and writers themselves, Emma and Emily have a particular interest in examining the role of friendship in writing, and they run the charming blog, Something Rhymed, which is dedicated to celebrating female literary friendships from the past and present.

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I was so delighted to be able to speak to them both about how their friendship has influenced their own writing careers, as well as the discoveries they made whilst writing A Secret Sisterhood. Their book has been meticulously researched, and Emily and Emma even uncovered a document written by Jane Austen’s niece, Fanny, that had never previously been found. We chat about this exciting discovery, as well as how Emma nerved up the courage to ask one of her present-day literary heroines, Margaret Atwood, to write the brilliant introduction to the book, and so much more.

Emily Midorikawa & Emma Claire Sweeney, photo by Rosalind Hobley

Emily Midorikawa & Emma Claire Sweeney, photo by Rosalind Hobley

Listen to learn more about the hidden literary friendships of some of the most famous female writers. 

Episode Breakdown

  • 00:25 - Miranda introduces Emily Midorikawa and Emma Claire Sweeney.
  • 02:43 - How Emily & Emma's literary friendship began.
  • 05:57 - The inspiration behind A Secret Sisterhood
  • 09:11 - Emma and Emily read extracts from the book.
  • 18:58 - Miranda questions Emily and Emma on their research process. 
  • 26:04 - Which friendships Emma and Emily found especially interesting. 
  • 29:28 - How Margaret Atwood came to write the introduction.
  • 33:19 - Whether working on the book together changed Emily and Emma's views on their friendship.
  • 35:29 - What's next for Emma and Emily.

Episode Links

Tweet Me!

click on the Twitter icon to share my favourite quote from this episode

Tweet: 'For a woman to actively seek an intellectual friend [was] quite radical.' ~ more about female literary friendships: http://bit.ly/2xMKFLQ

For a woman to actively seek an intellectual friend [was] quite radical.

 - Emma Claire Sweeney

Your Thoughts

Thank you so much for listening and being a part of Tea & Tattle podcast. As always, I love to hear your thoughts, so please let me know:

What did you enjoy most about this episode? Have you read A Secret Sisterhood? Do you share your work with fellow writer friends?

Next Time...

Sophie is back on the podcast, and we're sharing our views on the Swedish term lagom, meaning 'just the right amount,' and how this idea of moderation is helping us to lead more balanced lives. 

Happy Listening!  

48 | Lagom and the Art of Balanced Living

48 | Lagom and the Art of Balanced Living

46 | Wabi-Sabi and the Art of Imperfection

46 | Wabi-Sabi and the Art of Imperfection