The Guardian profiles Margaret Atwood:
She has acted this way – that is, precisely as she feels – all her professional life: exacting to the point of pedantic, sardonic to the point of humourless, her deadpan delivery lifted by the occasional massive grin that lights up her face and abruptly leaves it, like a streaker crossing a pitch.
She puts her assertiveness down to being raised in the Canadian wilds where the anxiety “what will other people think?” never came up, because “essentially there were no other people”. In her book of essays on being a writer, Negotiating with the Dead, she writes: “it took me a long time to figure out that the youngest in a family of dragons is still a dragon from the point of view of those who find dragons alarming.”
There’s an Al Purdy poem about Margaret Atwood that always makes me laugh. I have it around here somewhere and will post a bit should I find it.