Getting to Know You….

June 29, 2016

OK, I’ve only just figured out that there’s a difference between calling a page my blog and using the actual blog page. Duh. So I won’t post everything here that is on my “Blog” page, but here’s the most recent, i.m. Jenny Diski.


JENNY DISKI – July 8, 1947- April 28, 2016

Damn. Jenny Diski is dead. I knew it was coming almost from the first moment I met her – and when I say “met” this is entirely on the page, starting with the London Review of Books, where she was introduced to me by my husband. It was not long after that, her diagnosis of terminal lung cancer, which she wrote about until she couldn’t write any more. She has a witty, angry, voice. She tries to dissect the hurts — her own and other people’s —with cool rationality, but she smoulders. No surprise there. Her life began with some serious hard knocks and the knocks continued, ending with this one, her death from cancer. There were grand doses of love and happiness, too, of course, mostly to do with her family and her work, I think. In recent months she has written about her illness and, for the first time in depth and unadorned, her complex relationship with Doris Lessing (surrogate daughter and unaffectionate parent). Readers lured by the gossip factor may have been disappointed by her even-handedness, but probably not. She probes that relationship with the kind of insight she does most things – self-mocking, clear-eyed, sharp. She is not gentle, but she’s fair.

I count her as a friend. I will miss her, not least when I visit her website, and see this:

You can contact Jenny Diski by clicking here. She will or won’t reply.