RSL 200: Stephen Fry and Shaparak Khorsandi

Contributor/s : Stephen Fry, Shaparak Khorsandi

Recorded on date : October 1, 2020

Recorded at Location : Union Chapel

RSL Fellow Stephen Fry talks to comedian and author Shappi Khorsandi about writing across forms – from sketch comedy to poetry, independently and in collaboration, written and performed – that has elevated him to the status of national treasure. Stephen grew up in a house with colossal bookcases filled with classic works of literature, and would use them as medicine cabinets to treat his childhood. He has remarked that writing is a ‘newer technology – only five or six thousand years old’ by which ‘we can change utterance into permanence’, and when once asked for writing advice, he responded: ‘the important thing to do for those who want to liberate their writing is to be able to let go of their self-consciousness, to allow the words to write for them.’

Presented in Partnership with the British Library.

More from Awards and Prizes

Sky Arts RSL Writers Awards

Companions of Literature

RSL International Writers

Become a Member

Our Members are champions of literature. Their support makes our engagement work in schools and prisons possible and they enable us to celebrate literature in all its wonderful diversity. As a thank you, we give them all the joys of a literary festival and book club rolled into one, all year round.