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Atwood’s latest awards

From Maggie Fergusson in More Intelligent Life

On November 28 at the Canada House on Trafalgar Square, Margaret Atwood was named a Companion of Literature and inaugurated as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. No more than ten writers are Companions at any one time, and it is considered the RSL’s highest honor. 

Fellows sign into a great roll book using either Byron’s pen or Dickens’s quill; Atwood used Dickens’ quill. (Though she tested both out first in the editor’s notebook).

Atwood wrote in Fergusson’s notebook, trying out Byron’s pen first (“This is written with Lord Byron’s pen with however a modern nib. NIB”)

A woman in the audience asked about the future of gender relations; Atwood responded with, “Here’s a shocking piece of news for you: not all women are nice.” But, Fergusson reminds us, Atwood has a warmer side, too. “Speaking about her appetite for new technology—Twitter, Wattpad, Byliner—she revealed an overwhelming desire to ‘enable literature’ among people without regular access to bookshops, or libraries.”

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