This novel was inspired by the party we held to mark the Millennium. On the first day of the new year we buried a time capsule in the garden. All our guests, young and old, wrote their own contribution which was sealed and placed in the chest. I couldn’t help wondering what they had written and whether anyone had made any startling revelations.
In the novel everyone reveals their true selves in their Millennium letters. And as I wrote the novel, the characters grew in strength and took over, leading me into surprising places. When I was plotting the novel I heard a haunting piece of sacred music on the radio – Spem in Alium by Thomas Tallis. Consisting of eight choirs, each with five voices, which sing in and around each other, it led me to decide the novel should have eight intertwined characters, each with five chapters telling their back story. In the end, Caroline has more than five, but her story is the reason for unearthing the Millennium letters and she is dying, listening to the Tallis piece in the hospice.
The Way We Lied was placed second in the Winchester Writers Conference First Three Pages of the Novel competition. It is currently being serialised on this blog site and also on suzannegoldring.wordpress.com. If you have missed earlier posts you will find them in the archives dating from October 2015.