Tell me about the genesis of The Dust That Falls from Dreams.
I’ve been writing and planning little bits and pieces of it for 20 years. I hope it’s going to end up as three volumes, which can be read separately. It’s part of a huge project – I’ve already written the last chapter of the last book.
In my family we’ve always been rather obsessed with our own history, and if you’ve got a story given to you on a plate then it’s too good to pass over. But it’s not a family history – I’ve just used basic scaffolding: the fact that my grandmother lost her fiance in 1915, which altered the course of her life.