S5 Ep50: Nigel Williamson, obituarist

S5 Ep50: Nigel Williamson, obituarist

By Hattie Crisell

A little detour into death this week – or life, depending on how you look at it. Nigel Williamson, obituary writer for The Times newspaper, joins me to talk about the art of summing up a person one final time, over 1600 words or so, for the permanent record. I met Nigel in March at the News Building in London to talk about researching a biography, interviewing the bereaved, and trying to get the essence of a whole human life into a couple of pages.

You can buy the latest Times anthology of obituaries, Lives Less Ordinary, here, including Nigel's pieces on Ken Dodd, Greg Lake, Rod Temperton, Anita Pallenberg, April Ashley, Magic Alex, Christina Smith, Richard Cole, Jan Morris and many more: https://uk.bookshop.org/a/5954/9780008537913

And here are some more of Nigel's obituaries:

Lisa Marie Presley: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/lisa-marie-presley-dies-elvis-priscilla-aged-54-r5jt9v6ls

Jeff Beck: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/guitarist-jeff-beck-dies-aged-78-djff57bw9

Hilary Alexander: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/hilary-alexander-obituary-fxc02swrk

and my 2013 piece on Hilary Alexander, which I loved writing: https://www.thecut.com/2013/01/hilary-alexander-will-stop-working-someday.html

Join me on 18 April 2023 in London for this live event with the London Writers' Salon: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/how-to-build-a-self-directed-writing-career-w-london-writers-salon-tickets-609412698787 For a 50% discount and a drink at the bar, use the code HATTIEFRIEND when you purchase your ticket.

This season of In Writing is sponsored by Curtis Brown Creative. Use code INWRITING20 for £20 off one of their four, five, six, or ten-week online writing courses. Visit curtisbrowncreative.co.uk to find out more.
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