From the corner of a darkened room Joy Stone watches herself. Memories of deaths - her married lover and her mother - re-surface and boil over. Life has become all about finding the trick to keep going. Told with shattering clarity and wry wit, this is a Scottish classic fit for our time.
Galloway invites us into the mind of a woman on the edge, in a novel which 'resembles Tristram Shandy as rewritten by Sylvia Plath' (New York Times)
"A real achievement; its dialogue sparks and its voice is true. For Janice Galloway the trick is simply to keep writing" Scotsman "An account from the inside of a mind cracking up...its writing is as taut as a bowstring. From brilliant title to closing injunction, it hums with intelligence, clarity, wit; and, its heroine's struggle for order and meaning seduces our minds, exposes how close we all of us are to insanity. Joy, as Galloway's heroine reluctantly lets us know that she's called, is simply that dangerous step or two nearer the edge" Listener "This remarkably original work has gained Janice Galloway an almost immediate reputation as one of Scotland's most interesting serious prose writers" Glasgow Herald "Poignant and original...a wonderfully sensitive portrait of a woman who doesn't give up trying to find the "trick" to making life go on" Ms ? "Claustrophobic but extraordinary" Sunday Times
Janice Galloway's first novel, The Trick is to Keep Breathing, now widely regarded as a Scottish contemporary classic, was published in 1990 and won the MIND/Allen Lane Book of the Year. Her second novel, Foreign Parts, won the American Academy of Arts and Letters E. M. Forster Award while her third, Clara, about the tempestuous life of nineteenth-century pianist Clara Wieck Schumann, won the Saltire Award in 2002. Collaborative texts include an opera with Sally Beamish and three cross-discipline works with Anne Bevan, the Orcadian sculptor. Her 'anti-memoir', This Is Not About Me, was published by Granta in September 2008 to universal critical acclaim. She lives in Lanarkshire.