Gittins was born in
Lancashire and studied at Newcastle University and St
Martinís School of Art. She worked as an artist and a teacher
before becoming a freelance writer. She writes poetry, radio drama,
short stories, and poetry for children.
Short story collections
| Family Connections (Salt Publishing, 2007)
Longlisted for the
OíConnor International Short Story Award 2007.
Reviewed by Zoe King
with Chrissie Gittins
How long did it take you to write all the stories in your collection?
Gittins: The collection is made up of stories written over
16 years. I wasn't only writing stories over that time - I also write
poetry, poetry for children and radio drama.
TSR: Did you
have a collection in mind when you were writing them?
No, I simply wrote one after the other.
TSR: How did
you choose which stories to include and in what order?
I included most of the stories I'd written by
the time I submitted the collection to Salt. The stories were sequenced
according to subject matter, length and tone.
TSR: Do you
have a "reader" in mind when you write stories?
I wrote to entertain myself first and foremost.
TSR: Is there
anything you'd like to ask someone who has read your
anything at all?
What a good question! What's hard to know is what impact the collection
makes as a whole - what kind of reading experience is it?
TSR: How does it feel knowing that people are buying your book?
Wonderful and weird.
TSR: What are
you working on now?
My second collection of adult poems, children's poems and the
TSR: What are
the three most recent short story collections you've read?
Three collections - Yiyun Li's A Thousand Years of Good Prayers, Grace Paley's Collected and Ali Smith's The Whole Story and other Stories.