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Patrick Ness reveals reasons for writing A Monster Calls

10th August 2011

Author Patrick Ness has revealed why he accepted the challenge of writing A Monster Calls after the book's original writer, Siobhan Dowd, died of cancer while the novel was in the planning stage in 2007.

Initially, Ness, who won the Carnegie Medal earlier this year for Monsters of Men, said he was unsure about the project, but he realised the plot - about a world where private thoughts are audible - offered plenty of scope for development.

He told the BBC: 'The idea was so strong and so vivid that I never felt like I was completely fabricating something she didn't want.

'There was just enough material to kick me off, and have the freedom to let the story live and breathe while also celebrating her idea.'

Ness said he hopes that Dowd, who posthumously won the Carnegie Medal in 2009 for Bog Child, would have been proud of the final copy.

The author is set to further discuss some of the ideas behind A Monster Calls - the first chapter of which can be read here - at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, which takes place between August 13th and 29th in various locations across the Scottish capital.

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