Thornhill Post - - News -

I was sit­ting be­side Mar­garet Atwood when we won the Emmy for Best Dra­matic Se­ries.”

Mar­garet Atwood is fiercely in­tel­li­gent. She is gra­cious, hum­ble and ir­ri­tat­ingly el­e­gant. She also has quite a mis­chievous sense of hu­mour. But the thing I ad­mire most — the one char­ac­ter­is­tic that I des­per­ately try to nur­ture in my­self — is how forth­right she is. She uses her big girl voice. Al­ways. With­out ar­ro­gance or ag­gres­sion, she sits so un­apolo­get­i­cally in her own skin.

The Blind As­sas­sin, The Hand­maid’s Tale and Alias Grace were my in­tro­duc­tion to a woman as the pro­tag­o­nist. Ad­di­tion­ally, the fact that these works were nar­rated by a fe­male voice was mind-blow­ing to my ado­les­cent self. Find­ing her nov­els and her voice at such a young age proved to me that there is an abun­dance of com­pelling, pow­er­ful and

com­pletely flawed fe­male pro­tag­o­nists. I had only ever en­coun­tered male char­ac­ters as three-di­men­sional be­ings. It made me hun­gry to em­body these kind of women.

My first read of The Hand­maid’s Tale in­spired a mon­u­men­tal turn­ing point in my life. I was 15, liv­ing in a small town, which seemed over­whelm­ingly suf­fo­cat­ing. I in­stantly con­nected with Of­fred’s jour­ney, and slowly, page af­ter page, her re­silience and wit be­came a life­line for me.

I was sit­ting be­side Mar­garet Atwood when we won the Emmy for Best Dra­matic Se­ries. The mo­ment we heard our name an­nounced, she and I hugged and stum­bled out of our row to­gether. We walked to the stage arm in arm, and when we ar­rived at the top, I got to watch the crowd give her a much de­served stand­ing ova­tion. She has been my idol since I was 15 years old. I can’t think of a bet­ter end­ing to this 25-year-old love story.

Atwood com­mit­ted to a writ­ing ca­reer at 16 while at­tend­ing Lea­side High School


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