Brighton Festival 2017Public booking opens: Fri 24 Feb, 9am

5 mins with...Helen Oyeyemi

Writer Helen Oyeyemi whose recent short story collection What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours made waves among literary critics, answers our quick-fire questions ahead of her Brighton Festival event.


I knew I wanted to be a writer when…

I’m still waiting for the definitive moment. More often I have moments when I know I want to be a lawyer or a psychiatrist or a librarian or a proprietor of a tea parlour, &c &c.

The first book I ever bought was…

Oh, I used a book voucher but that still counts – it was a novelisation of one of the storylines from The Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles cartoon.

My favourite writer is…

A combination of approximately seventeen different favourite writers.

The last book I read was…

Chaucer’s The Assembly of Fowls. Recommended.

The proudest moment of my career to date was when…

I’ll get back to you on this one…

People would be surprised to learn that…

For the past four years or so, somebody has been graffitiing the name ‘Helen’ on walls all over Prague (I swear it isn’t me – though maybe that is the plot twist, that I’ve been doing this in my sleep.) Anyway, this person is still at it – I came across a new ‘Helen’ a few weeks ago.

Helen Oyeyemi is at Brighton and Hove High School on Saturday 20 May