Category Archives: Women

Happiness & Rights balanced by Meaning & Responsibility; and William Golding on Women

Jordan Peterson, author of 12 Rules for Life: an antidote to chaos said, in an interview with Rabbi Jonathan Sacks on Radio 4 recently (these words come from the beginning and the end of the programme): We’ve been fed a diet of … Continue reading

Posted in Fiction, Gun Control, Literary Prizes, Morality, Things I'd Love to Have Made, Women, Writers | 2 Comments

Women writers, and children; and Retro Peepers

I’ve never had children and the reason (apart from meeting the man whose children I’d love to have had well beyond my fertile years) is that I was always afraid that looking after children would eat so far into my … Continue reading

Posted in Artists, Creativity, Design, Things I'd Love to Have Made, Women, Writers, Writing | Comments Off on Women writers, and children; and Retro Peepers

Words on Writing, and Pass on a Poem

There are hundreds of thousands of words written about writing fiction: how to write, why we write, what to do when we can’t write and on and on so that, sometimes, I feel as if I’m adrift on a sea … Continue reading

Posted in Artists, Creativity, Death and Dying, Fiction, Literary Prizes, Things I'd Love to Have Made, Women, Writers, Writing | Comments Off on Words on Writing, and Pass on a Poem

Auditioning to become a WI Speaker, and ‘Born Baffled: Musings on a Writing Life’

In March I auditioned to become a WI speaker. The WI, you say? Don’t they just make jam, sing Jerusalem and talk a lot? Yes to all three, but no to JUST. There are 6,300 WIs in this country with 220,000 members … Continue reading

Posted in Psychology, Talks, Things I'd Love to Have Made, Titanic, Women, Writers, Writing | 3 Comments

A History of Britain in 21 Women, by Jenni Murray

This is both the thing I’m writing about this month and the thing I’d love to have written, in a parallel universe where time is infinite and all things are possible:What an entirely brilliant and inspiring idea. It begins with … Continue reading

Posted in Creativity, Psychology, Reviews, Women, Writers | Comments Off on A History of Britain in 21 Women, by Jenni Murray

John Berger, Ways of Seeing … and PEN International

John Berger, who died aged 90 on January 2nd, was a critic, novelist, playwright, screenwriter and poet and well-known to many. Occasionally, in his early writings according to this Guardian obituary, Berger’s ‘Marxist dialectic did force him into uncomfortable contortions’, but whenever I heard him … Continue reading

Posted in Artists, Equality, Women, Writers | Comments Off on John Berger, Ways of Seeing … and PEN International

What it’s like to write and what it’s like to imagine you might write; and Suffragette

In Edith Wharton‘s 1925 The Writing of Fiction  in the section called ‘Constructing a Navel’ – obviously a typographical mistake but one I like for its overtones of contemplation – Wharton writes about the creation of character in a novel: The creatures … Continue reading

Posted in Creativity, Storytelling, Things I'd Love to Have Made, Women, Writers, Writing | Comments Off on What it’s like to write and what it’s like to imagine you might write; and Suffragette

How incomprehensible unworkable things inspire

Joanna Briscoe and Grace Paley caught my attention this month. They’re very different writers but I’ve just read articles about writing by both. Grace Paley died in 2007 but a friend sent me her thoughts on writing recently. Here’s an extract … Continue reading

Posted in Storytelling, Things I'd Love to Have Made, Women, Writers, Writing | 5 Comments

103 years on, Titanic; and the things that come unbidden when you write

One hundred and three years ago today more than 1,500 people died in the freezing waters of the North Atlantic when RMS Titanic hit the iceberg and then sank, in the early hours of 15 April. My great-grandmother, Nöel Rothes, was one … Continue reading

Posted in Dance of Love, The, Titanic, Women, Writing | Comments Off on 103 years on, Titanic; and the things that come unbidden when you write

A time when women weren’t persons … and other equally unequal inequalities

In 1927 a group of Canadian women’s rights activists, including Emily Murphy, who was born 147 years ago today launched the Persons Case, which contended that women were qualified persons eligible to sit in the Senate. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that … Continue reading

Posted in Equality, Women | Comments Off on A time when women weren’t persons … and other equally unequal inequalities