Emily Morris was born in 1982. She grew up near Southport and in 2002 moved to Manchester, where she studied History of Art. She now lives in Salford with her son, who is almost three. She is currently working on a collection of short stories for her MA Writing Studies at Edge Hill University, after which she will begin work on her first novel. Emily works as a librarian and runs a travel business from home. She blogs at My Shitty Twenties.
Why do you blog? > Because I want to help to dispel the myths that still exist about single mums. Also, on a personal level, it enables me to turn things that might otherwise make me cry into things that make me laugh.
What has been your best blogging experience? > Watching my stat counter go up and up.
What would be your main blogging advice to a novice blogger? > Write often, don't be shy, check your stats to see where traffic is coming from, link and comment lots.
What are you reading at the moment? > A very yellowed copy of Tales from Tchehov, published by Penguin in 1938. It was £1 from Kernaghan's Books in Southport, one of my favourite bookshops in the world.
What is your favourite song? > 'Waterfall' by The Stone Roses.
Can you name a major moral, political or intellectual issue on which you've ever changed your mind? > Abortion. I am by no means against it but I always thought it would be a fairly simple thing to do until faced with the decision. I used to be under the impression that its availability to women was liberating, when in fact I felt quite trapped by the notion that as a young, intelligent woman, it was my only option.
Can you name a work of non-fiction which has had a major and lasting influence on how you think about the world? > Numerous feminist books, especially Mysogynies by Joan Smith. When I was young and naive, I eschewed feminism – now I realize I would have been wise to pay some attention.
Who are your political heroes? > Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Barack Obama.
What do you consider to be the main threat to the future peace and security of the world? > The existence of nuclear weapons.
Do you think the world (human civilization) has already passed its best point, or is that yet to come? > I used to be cynical about this, but having children changes your perspective. For my son's sake, I really hope it is yet to come, but I realize that climate change is a very real threat.
What would be your most important piece of advice about life? > If something is going to be difficult but it is still possible, it is worth a go.
Do you think you could ever be married to, or in a long-term relationship with, someone with radically different political views from your own? > Not if they were radically different. I could never love a fascist.
Do you have any prejudices you're willing to acknowledge? > I'm rather dubious of anyone who reads The Daily Mail, which in a way makes me as bad as them.
What is your favourite proverb? > 'Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the places and the moments that take our breath away.'
What commonly enjoyed activities do you regard as a waste of time? > Excessive alcohol consumption, but that doesn't stop me from indulging in it on a regular basis.
If you were to relive your life to this point, is there anything you'd do differently? > I would accept the offer I was given to study Language, Literacy and Communication at Manchester University instead of going down south to do advertising.
Where would you most like to live (other than where you do)? > Chorlton-cum-Hardy (also known as Utopia).
What would your ideal holiday be? > It would have to be a magnificent multi-stop trip with Tom in tow: eating good food on a small Greek Island, an adventure through India from Dehli down to Kerala, a stop in Japan to see my good friend Ellen, hanging out with orangutans in Borneo, travelling down the east coast of Australia, then Havana, The Galapagos Islands and New York. Is that greedy? I'm a bit of a fan of travel.
What do you like doing in your spare time? > Procrastinating, browsing bookshops, trying to turn my concrete yard into a little piece of Greece, writing, reading, walking and thinking.
What is your most treasured possession? > My little boy Tom, then my collection of beautiful Paperblank notebooks.
If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to? > Chastity.
What talent would you most like to have? > The ability to keep a tidy home.
What would be your ideal choice of alternative profession or job? > Travel journalist. I used to think I wanted to be a midwife but I think I am lacking in necessary calm.
Who is your favourite comedian or humorist? > Controversial, but I'm afraid it is still Russell Brand.
Which English Premiership football team do you support? > I don't support a football team but people tell me I should steer Tom towards one. I know nothing about football. I get the impression Manchester City don't do very well and they need more supporters than United, which is like an international brand. I'll see what Tom decides when he starts school.
If you could have one (more or less realistic) wish come true, what would you wish for? > To find myself in 10 years time in my own home, having written at least one best selling novel and having had more children. Sorry, that's three. The novel - everything else will follow.
How, if at all, would you change your life were you suddenly to win or inherit an enormously large sum of money? > I would take Tom on that wonderful adventure then come home, buy a house with a big garden in Chorlton and write full-time.
If you could have any three guests, past or present, to dinner who would they be? > Mahatma Gandhi, Frida Kahlo and my son Tom. He's a fussy eater but a great conversationalist.
What animal would you most like to be? > A female black widow spider.
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