Book Review – Just Writers: A Collection of Works by Disabled Writers

    Whitehill

    ISBN 0-9525838-4-4, £7.50

    STAR RATING: 4/5

    Living with disabilities can bring unique human experiences, writes
    Simon Heng.

    Nevertheless, the authors of this collection of poems and prose are
    adamant in defining themselves in their own terms at the beginning
    of Just Writers rather than be described by their
    disabilities.

    Contributions are grouped by themes. The first section focuses on
    the “normality” of the writers’ perceptions: for example, what’s
    enjoyable in life and descriptions of nature.

    However, this section was the most disappointing for it could have
    been a collection from any creative writing course.

    In contrast, the next sections contain pieces which articulate
    disabled experiences which are, in places, darkly humorous,
    sometimes Kafkaesque and often deeply moving. A description of a
    childhood friend, Freddie, moved me to tears, while an adult’s
    depiction of her life with Asperger’s syndrome is worth the price
    of the book on its own.

    Simon Heng is physically disabled and works with service
    user groups in Worcestershire

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