Item description for Life Drawing by Linda Cracknell...
Linda Cracknell's emergence as one of Scotland's finest short story writers is confirmed with the publication of her first collection, Life Drawing. The title is taken from the short story she wrote in 1998 and submitted as an unknown to the Macallan/Scotland on Sunday competition. She won that award and since then has crafted a collection of great breadth which encompasses the passage through life.
The 19 stories in this collection begin with the experience of childhood and take the reader on a journey through themes of abandonment, isolation, grief, awakenings, disillusionment and reconciliation to arrive, inevitably, at old age.
Slight, life-changing moments are captured here-a young woman travels to London on the overnight train and has an encounter, yearning to break free of her small-town roots; a middle-aged woman moves to a new suburb and notices an abandoned car in her street, which she starts, surreptitiously, to clean; an old man writes a letter to his estranged son... people trapped by convention, inhibition and the past, struggle to cross the barriers that confine us all. Linda Cracknell is a precise observer of incidents, which, often perverse and absurd, reveal the human spirit in all its strength and humor.
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Linda Cracknell has been a teacher of English in Zanzibar, worked for environmental charity WWF, and was writer-in-residence at Hugh MacDiarmid's last home near Biggar. She now lives in Highland Perthshire. Her short fiction has appeared in magazines and journals, been broadcast on BBC Radio, and was previously collected in Life Drawing, published in 2000. She writes drama for BBC Radio Four and is now writing essays about walks which follow human stories in 'wild' places.