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Thursday, August 30, 2018

Writing 'Life With Its Teeth Out'

“Writing a novel is not merely going on a shopping expedition across the border to an unreal land: it is hours and years spent in the factories, the streets, the cathedrals of the imagination.” – Janet Frame

Born in August of 1924, Nene Janet Paterson Clutha was a New Zealand author who published under the name Janet Frame, authoring novels, short stories, poetry, juvenile fiction, essays and several bestselling nonfiction books.

After dealing with depression and anxiety and spending several years of hospitalization as a young adult, Frame decided to start anew by traveling abroad.  In London, she began therapy with London doctor Robert Hugh Cawley, who encouraged her to pursue what would become one of the great writing careers.  She later dedicated 7 of her novels to Cawley.   
       During her lifetime (she died in 2004), Frame's work garnered numerous literary prizes including the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for The Carpathians.   Also a gifted writer of nonfiction, she was one of the most widely published essayists of the late 20th Century and two of her nonfiction books, An Angel at My Table, and The Envoy from Mirror City, earned Book of the Year Awards in several nations.

Noted for her hard-hitting realism, she once noted, “I like to see life with its teeth out.”

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