Why Sebastian Barry’s new book was inspired by his gay son

The Irish writer talks to Rebecca Jones about the genesis of his latest novel, Days Without End. Watch the video to find out more.

Sebastian Barry is a prolific poet, playwright and novelist, with nine novels and 14 plays under his belt - it’s perhaps surprising that he didn’t read or write until he was eight years old.

But, as Barry tells Rebecca Jones in this video from the Hay Festival, he instead spent his early years listening to and absorbing the vivid language of his family. When these older generations inevitably die, he explains, “you can take them with you in this kit form of floating language.”

The Irish author also reveals how his latest novel, Days Without End, which focuses on the relationship between two gay men, was inspired by his son coming out to him when he was 16. Watch the video above to find out more.

Talking Books: Hay Festival 2017 Sebastian Barry airs on BBC World News at 13:30 on Sat 17 June 2017. Check the schedule for more details.

If you would like to comment on this story or anything else you have seen on BBC Culture, head over to our Facebook page or message us on Twitter.