Each year, Hay Festival Wales champions 10 remarkable debuts from first time authors as a part of our Debut Discoveries series. Our line-up for 2023 includes Sussie Anie with her debut To Fill a Yellow House. Get to know Sussie better in this Q&A...

What compelled you to write your debut?

London compelled me. I had just moved back (to Northwick Park) after living in Norwich for a year, and the city I’d grown up in had become new and startling (in beautiful and unsettling ways). Writing To Fill a Yellow House created space to reflect on change and belonging, discovery and loss, as well as how people shape places & how places shape people.

What does being featured in Hay Festival’s Debut Discoveries mean to you?

It means a great deal to me to share my debut novel alongside so many artists whose work I admire. I'm honoured and excited to join a community of writers and readers in such a beautiful setting. A dream.

What are you looking forward to at the Festival?

Conversations with other writers and readers - also sunshine (hopefully).

What book(s) are you reading at the moment?

Dark Neighbourhood by Vanessa Onwuemezi and rereading A Ghost in the Throat by Doireann Ní Ghríofa.

What advice would you give to those writing their own debuts?

Take your time, even if that means taking long breaks to let the story breathe, and enjoy the process.

Listen to Sussie Anie talk To Fill a Yellow House with Nia Thomas on Hay Player now.