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A new year that changed me: my partner said I would publish a book – so I had to | Annie Freud

After the new year announcement to friends, I panicked and suffered writer’s block. It was broken by an absurd dream about rare cheese

Sixteen years ago, long before there was any prospect of my work being published, I dreamed that I found a small book lying in the gutter directly outside my front door. The cover was the deep colour of blackcurrants and the words were in lemon yellow. I picked it up and read the title: Rare London Cheeses. To my amazement I saw that it was a collection of poems written by me.

At that point I’d woken up and stretched out my hand to the bedside table where I expected to find it. My disappointment, though intense, was tinged with promise, even a sort of serenity. It was as if my poems had already been written.

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