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warrior on the wall

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The Warrior on the Wall


Lin Tidy has written a book that will make you angry about injustice. It's about the way women are treated by the system - by the law and by mental health services. But Lin has a positive outlook on life so it's not a misery memoir and life in a marina forms a backdrop to the central theme. It is, however, a real story about her experience of being locked up in a category A prison for a minor offence. She had already learnt that she could write so that's what she did while she was in prison. Other women told her their stories so she wrote them down; lots of stories of injustice and lack of health care. So many women in prison have mental health problems and addiction issues that we should be asking why that is the case and what is being done to get them the treatment they are entitled to.

Lin started writing when she was living in California and decided to do some studying. Psychology and Spanish were her chosen subjects but the college insisted that everyone had to do what they called 'composition'. Although Lin was not at all pleased to be forced to do something she didn't want to do it turned out to be an unexpectedly positive step. The compulsory course was actually creative writing and it was her tutor's support that convinced Lin she could write. Since that time she has belonged to writing groups, added a Diploma in Creative Writing to her first degree and worked as a primary school teacher. Her teaching experience came in really useful in prison where she was allowed to assist in the classroom alongside the prison education service, helping speakers of other languages to understand the world around them.

The Warrior on the Wall is well named. Lin's story poses uncomfortable questions about the misuse of power and raises issues that should be challenged by all of us. It is available through which is Arts Council funded and printed by Lightning I would urge you to have a look at Lin's website: and find out what she has to say.

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