Dolores Redondo is the author of the novel All This I Will Give to You, now available in English. Her other novels include The Invisible Guardian and The Legacy of the Bones. She lives in Spain.
Q: How did you come up with the idea for All This I Will Give to You?
A: All This I Will Give to You had been lingering in my mind for a long time. As a matter of fact, this story had been forming in my mind way before I wrote The Invisible Guardian but All This I Will Give to You kept popping in my mind, developing at its own rhythm.
My family and my sister are connected to Ribeira Sacra, and there was something about the place I sensed in my first visit: In that moment, it’s when I started to envision a novel set in such a special place, with such dramatic landscape and weather, and the spirituality around it.
Q: Your main character, Manuel Ortigosa, is a bestselling novelist, as are you. What was it like to write about a writer?
A: It felt really close, as I knew what I was talking about, I could relate to the feeling of what it means to be a writer and to work as one. As a writer you need someone beside you to ground you, to help you be connected with the real world, we get so caught up with our fictional stories and our fictional worlds.
There were so many traces of Manuel’s personality that could be of my own, that the fact that we are so humanly connected helped a great deal to develop and draw him as a character.
Q: Did you know how the novel would end before you started writing, or did you make many changes along the way?
A: Yes, I always know where and how the story will end before I start a novel. Writing a novel is like digging a mine, an underground passage: you start making some discoveries along the way, you dig some new passages and some of them you need to discard, others you keep, and others help you; but at the beginning you already knew where you were going, and that’s where you are going to end.
Q: Who are some of your favorite writers?
A: I am a huge fan of P.D. James, Agatha Christie and Ruth Rendell, but also of Dickens, Juan Rulfo, Ernesto Sabato and Juan Benet. I am currently reading Stephen King’s latest novel.
Q: What are you working on now?
A: I always keep that secret, as I find it a bad omen to talk about my new novels when they are still in my head. The truth is, I never stop writing, so there’s always something.
--Interview with Deborah Kalb