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Posted by Digby Stephenson

October 19th 2009

Dear William, Our 3-night run of "Shadowlands" ended in Henfield on Saturday. I can truthfully say that it has been an amazing experience for all of us who worked on the production. Judging by the reaction of many who saw it, they were similarly rattled by the many powerful emotions and questions that the play evinced. At a personal level, I still haven't quite got back to this world, and find myself answering questions, and making comments, the way that Jack would have done. I wish the group in Ilkley every success with their production, but mainly I wanted to thank you for writing such a stunning work about "The gift of Suffering". Put simply, It has been a life-changing experience for me. Digby Stephenson

William Nicholson responded:

I'm thrilled that it went so well. It's one of those plays that really only works if the actors give it their own emotional truth, which is very exhausting. So I'm glad to feel that it gave you something back too.

Posted by Walter Swan

October 17th 2009

Dear William, Me again! My colleague, Yvette Huddleston, and I are directing "Shadowlands" which opens at Ilkley Playhouse on 2nd November. It's going wonderfully well, helped by having splendid actors (of course) in the roles of Jack and Joy. Any last minute words of advice and wisdom from the author to speed us on our way would be hugely welcomed. (And we run for a fortnight, so if you are in Yorkshire in November, we'd love to see you!) We won the Minack trophy this season with "The Crucible" and all the signs are that "Shadowlands" is going to have a similarly powerful impact on audiences.

William Nicholson responded:

No advice or wisdom: I trust you and your actors to pursue truth in performance, which is all any of us can do. I'm afraid I won't be able to come in person, but I'll be there in spirit. How strange to think of the work I did over twenty years ago now coming back to life in others' hands. I hope Yorkshire is still being good to you. Sussex's loss.

Posted by saldjk

October 15th 2009

hi, whats the book about

William Nicholson responded:

I don't know what book you mean, but the way to find out is - open it and start reading. If it bores you, throw it away.

Posted by John Smith

October 14th 2009

Apart from the books you wrote what is your favourite book written by another author.

William Nicholson responded:

Too many to mention - I love books - but here's one I love very much: Middlemarch by George Eliot.

Posted by Ben

October 14th 2009

You came to my school yesterday. Cool talk! Why did you hate tests if you were so good at them?

William Nicholson responded:

For the reason I gave in my talk: tests don't measure what I believe is most important about me or anyone else. Really what I dislike is tests being made to matter so much.

Posted by Sharon Mayfield

October 14th 2009

Dear Sir, I greatly enjoyed listening to the Saturday play, Radio 4, 10th October, Shadowlands. Having watched the film a number of times, I never seem to tire of it. I am struck by the richeness, depth and complexity of some of the dialogue with its religious/spiritual references. Some of these seemed to me so succinct that I was seeking a transcript so that I could think about it at greater length, is this possible? Also, linked to this, is any of the dialogue based on known writings/conversations or is it strictly 'dramatised'?

William Nicholson responded:

There is a printed copy of the stage play available from Samuel French Ltd. The dialogue is entirely made up by me; though of course in order to do so I read deeply in Lewis's own writings.