“Children’s literature is multiple and lively”

Esmé Planchon published last March Stories should never end a well-crafted investigative novel.

INTERVIEW – The author is invited to the Var Book Festival, which is held in Toulon from Friday 18 to Sunday 20 November.

About forty children’s authors are expected during the festival at the Fête du livre du Var, from Friday 18 to Sunday 20 November in Toulon. Among them, Esmé Planchon, who publishes Stories should never end. In a well-crafted investigative novel, she follows the life of a teenager immersed in his novels and marked by mourning who, through his encounters, will open up to reality and the world.

LE FIGARO. – You talk about very contemporary subjects in this novel: gender, fanfiction, the virtual… How do you write for young people?

Esme PLANCHON. – I try to fit into reality, but always shifting it a little. I like the very topical relationship teenagers often have with books and fiction. They often talk about their characters as if they were their friends.

My main character has this relationship with the books he reads, which are totally fictional. The Invisible Worlds of which he is a fan do not exist. This is a fake novel series that can resonate with all readers to their favorite series. I like books for young people because they help to build. How do we build ourselves with stories? How do you invent your life? These are questions that we ask ourselves as adults, but which are very specific at this age when we invent ourselves and where we seek models to become what we are and what we would like to be. .

Your character, Lucien, says Zora, can become whoever he wants thanks to digital. Does the virtual give more freedom than the real?

I’m talking less about the virtual than about fiction in this novel, and about all the ways we can find ourselves thanks to fiction. The Internet allows Lucien to become different. So I integrate reality into fiction and vice versa. The Invisible Worlds that I create in my book are inspired by real series, like comics W.I.T.C.H. or The Mirror Pass by Christelle Dabos. I also thought of the book Interior night by Marisha Pessl and the Kensington Gardens by Rodrigo Fresan, who stage false books and films.

Fiction is born from reality, from a reality transformed and retransformed by our point of view. My novel questions the origins of fiction, but also recalls the importance of mystery

Esme Planchon

Your characters want to discover the identity of their favorite novelist. Is it important to separate the author from his work?

Books don’t come out of nowhere. One does not write alone in a vacuum. The person who writes is necessarily inspired by things he has experienced. It responds to reality with works of art. How do you construct a book? Fiction is born from reality, from a reality transformed and retransformed by our point of view. My novel questions the origins of fiction, but also recalls the importance of mystery.

The fanfiction plays a big role in your novel. Is this a way of remembering that young people read, including on screens?

I have great faith in children’s literature. It is multiple and alive. It is a place of creation and invention of forms. In this book, I mix forms and genres. I write by images and by metaphors; my writing is both poetic and oral. Today young people read everything: manga, comics, novels… They have a taste for history and fiction. And I believe that fiction is not an escape from reality but a means of making it more intense and more beautiful, and of constructing and inventing oneself.

Stories should never end by Esmé Planchon (text) and Manon Bucciarelli (illustrations), Bayard jeunesse, 400 pages, 13.90 euros. Bayard youth

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