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September 15, 2002
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Fay Weldon has been chosen as the Savoy Hotel's first writer-in-residence. The successful author will be given a £350-a-night room in the reknowned hotel for three months starting in October. The hotel's hospitality includes breakfasts and a stunning view over the Thames.

Her duties during her time at the luxury accomodation will include attending literary lunches and writing the occasional article for the company magazine. A delighted Fay, soon to be 71, said: “I would rather be writer-in-residence at the Savoy than writer-in-residence at a university. My friends who do that have tiny little concrete rooms. They teach and help writers, and it's very hard work. I don't see myself doing that at the Savoy.”

The hotel is keen to reclaim its literary reputation and highlight the illustrious writers such as Oscar Wilde and Arnold Bennett who have stayed there. “The point is to give authors a literary base in London,” said Savoy spokeswoman Pat Carter, “and we're hoping that our other guests will be able to take advantage of being near the authors.”

Fay's move comes after criticism of a deal she made last year, in which she was paid a handsome sum to feature a London jewellers in her last novel. She has no plans to use the Savoy´s name in forthcoming books, however. “I won't try that again,” she says. “Funnily enough I often mention Claridges in my books and have often stayed there.”

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The author will be staying in £350-a-night accomodation with a fabulous view of the Thames, unlike her friends who are writers-in-residence at universities, working "in tiny little concrete rooms" Photo:

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