Critically acclaimed and two-time winner of the Miles Franklin award, Alex Miller will be publishing his latest book, The Passage of Love, in November.
This is his most personal of novels as it’s a fictional autobiography detailing his years struggling to be a writer. Miller also says it’s “the story of my first wife’s terrible struggle to liberate herself from the bonds of her childhood and to find meaning and purpose in her own existence as an independent woman.”
Alex Miller on why he wrote The Passage of Love
I’ve had several goes at writing this book over the past 30 years but have lacked the one thing I needed: the detachment from my youth that is one of the advantages of old age. The book is my take on fictional autobiography, an attempt in the form of a novel to review the struggle years of my youth and to celebrate the lives of loved ones, old friends, lovers and partners, most of whom are no longer with us.
Writing the book, I missed those old intimates more than I had missed them in years. They stood with me. They lived for me again. They came into my dreams. Their lives moved me and my love for them was rekindled. Nostalgia, gratitude, sadness, the beauty of their world and mine in youth, a world to which I no longer belong but to which I once belonged with all my failures, my passions, the limitless energies of my youth, my hopes, my dreams and my regrets; it was all there. They gave me once again the joys and the terrors of their lives and my own. The truth of us.
I wrote the book to settle my moral account with my early years. As a novelist my allegiance is to the truth of dreams not to the interpretation of factual reality.
I wrote the book to settle my moral account with my early years. As a novelist my allegiance is to the truth of dreams not to the interpretation of factual reality. The facts are incontestable, they are the infrastructure of our reality, and so long as we don’t deny them, what we do with them is up to us, whether we are writers or artists or filmmakers. And it is to the truth of my youthful dreams, the story of those people and those yearnings and longings that formed the shape of my history, that I pay tribute with this story. It is a novel based on my years of struggle to turn myself into a writer, and it is the story of my first wife’s terrible struggle to liberate herself from the bonds of her childhood and to find meaning and purpose in her own existence as an independent woman.
About Alex Miller
All of Alex Miller’s novels have been critically acclaimed and have won or been shortlisted in all of the major Australian literary awards. He is twice winner of Australia’s premier literary prize, the Miles Franklin Literary Award, and is an overall winner of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for The Ancestor Game. In 2015, The Simplest Words, Alex Miller’s first collection of stories, memoir, commentary and poetry, was published to great acclaim.
Alex Miller is published internationally and his works have been widely translated.
The Passage of Love
Sitting in a New York park, an old man holds a book and tries to accept that his contribution to the future is over.
Instead, he remembers a youthful yearning for open horizons, for Australia, a yearning he now knows inspired his life as a writer. Instinctively he picks up his pen and starts at the beginning...
At twenty-one years, Robert Crofts leaves his broken dreams in Far North Queensland, finally stopping in Melbourne almost destitute. It's there he begins to understand how books and writing might be the saving of him. They will be how he leaves his mark on the world. He also begins to understand how many obstacles there will be to thwart his ambition....
About the Contributor
Anastasia Hadjidemetri is the former editor of The Booktopian and star of Booktopia's weekly YouTube show, Booked with Anastasia. A big reader and lover of books, Anastasia relishes the opportunity to bring you all the latest news from the world of books.