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Brief Encounter - Rowena Macdonald

Originally Published 11 June 2004
Rowena Macdonald
Rowena Macdonald

Rowena Macdonald is a MA student in the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies.
She is also one of the writers whose work is being featured in an anthology of writings showcasing the literary talents of all twelve students on the MA programme.
‘You too can have this beautiful Life’, will be launched at the Warwick Arts Centre on June 23.

MA in Writing student.

Favourite phrase:
Anything along the lines of 'Totally nancyish', 'Absolute nancy' and 'Stop being such a nancy'.

Least favourite phrase:
When people say 'bless' to indicate patronising sympathy or feelings of endearment towards someone.

Magazines read:
Observer magazine. London Review of Books (only the Lonely Hearts Column, the rest of it is too difficult).

Life before Warwick:
Did degree in English at Sussex University, trained and worked as a journalist, gave up that four years ago to write. For the last three years I have been working as a secretary at the House of Commons and writing before I go to work.

Best thing about studying at Warwick:
Some of my tutors and some of my fellow students.

Worst thing about studying at Warwick:
The poor excuse for tea that they serve in the Raffles cafeteria.

Lifelong ambition:
To be a critically acclaimed best-selling author.

As a young child what did you want to be as a "grown-up"?
A fashion designer.

Now that you are grown-up what would be your "dream job"?
I'd like to be a successful writer but in my dream world I'd like to be a circus acrobat or a gymnast.

What has life's experience taught you so far?
That thankfully nothing stays the same. Everything changes.

Major achievement to date?
Winning the Asham Trust short story competition, which set me on the path to trying to be a writer.

Which person inspires you most, and why?
My mother, because she trained as a painter at 40 while looking after three young children and she pursued her art very seriously, becoming a successful painter.

If you could change one thing in the University overnight, what would it be?
A better range of contemporary literature in the library.