There's an article by Paul Farley up on the Guardian website today as part of their "Once upon a life" series. The story of his first few months as an art student in London, it's interesting enough in itself, but takes on far more significance when read alongside his first collection, "The Boy from the Chemist is Here to See You".
There are always arguments about the relationship between biographical detaila and literary texts, but in this case I certainly feel that my appreciation of Farley's book has been enriched by his article. I'd always loved the ferocious vivacity of his first collection and noticed a slow seep-away of this quality in subsequent volumes. I now understand the seismic shifts in his life that contributed to making "The Boy from the Chemist..." such a tremendous and unrepeatable jolt to the reader.