Julia Lindqvist: a novel, and writing the unhappy queer ending

Hitchman, B (2018) Julia Lindqvist: a novel, and writing the unhappy queer ending. PhD thesis, Bath Spa University.


This thesis is composed of interlocking creative and critical components. Its purpose is to understand how I, a lesbian-identified author, might approach writing an unhappy ending for lesbian characters in my novel. In recent years, academic criticism has focused on reclaiming the unhappy ending as a 'political gift'. Meanwhile, in the mainstream media and on social media networked-reading sites, we find an alternative discourse, in which LGBT readers continue to express disenchantment with the disproportionate number of unhappy endings for LGBT characters. 'Julia Lindqvist' uses practice-based research to find answers (novel as thinking-machine), whilst the critical study provides a theoretical framework for the enquiry. In 'Writing the unhappy queer ending', I focus on five key works of fiction which have influenced my own creative practice: texts by Alan Hollinghurst, Emma Donoghue, Patricia Duncker, Sarah Waters and Patricia Highsmith. Revisiting the endings of these texts, I listen to what they have to tell me about the act of writing an unhappy ending. Contrasting the first draft ending of 'Julia Lindqvist' with the final version, I discuss the ways in which this critical enquiry has influenced the ending of the novel.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)

This research was carried out in partnership with the University of Aberystwyth and funded by the South-West & Wales Doctoral Training Partnership.

Keywords: creative writing, fiction, LGBT characters, lesbians in fiction, social media, mainstream media, story structure, endings in fiction
Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
Date Deposited: 22 May 2019 16:32
Last Modified: 22 May 2019 16:55
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