I often say to writers that the only place for a writer is on the outside of everything. These days more than ever we are on the outside – of any aspiration to normal life. So it is no wonder that the following has emerged from a starting point in my notebook.
In this prolonged period of isolation my notebook is my best friend. In it I have scrawled impressions, thoughts, and feelings which turn up in an almost random fashion. Occasionally I turn the pages, pick up an idea and work on it in a more focused fashion. Working and moulding this into something more distinct and possibly distinctive is a writer’s active pleasure.
I was bred to be an outsider.
Being the new child from a far town
I was labelled outsider.
Talking with the wrong tone
I was seen as a verbal outsider.
Being the cleverest child in the class
taught me to be an outsider.
Working alongside men
I was the female outsider.
Writing things down
I became a mendacious outsider.
Living with a man who doesn’t see
I am a married outsider.
Living on through old age
I am the ultimate outsider
To others on the planet
I remain an outsider.
But now it seems I am
at the centre
of my own outside world
Also see my novel The Bad Child
which emerged from these same feelings of Outsiderness some years ago.
I find I am nothing if not consistent.
'As her life begins to unravel Dee tells us her own story - how she begins to rescue herself from her own life. But she’s not alone on her journey. Travelling with her is a woman who throws pots and a dog called Rufus. Then there are Dee's drawing books and the characters she's met in the stories she has read……'