Writer and editor

One in 50 Women Will Get Ovarian Cancer at Some Point. Know the Symptoms

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

I met Rebecca Readshaw about eight years ago, long before she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She is the warm, down-to-earth wife of a friend – a BBC camera operator and floor manager with a nose ring, tattoos and a huge smile. She was 31 when she got her diagnosis; at 32, she underwent major surgery, during which her womb, her ovaries, most of her bowel, the bottom lining of her diaphragm and her appendix were removed.

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How the Red Carpet Evolved Into a Whole New Animal

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Dior is classically ladylike, while Jennifer Lawrence is funny and irreverent. When she wore black Schiaparelli Couture to a premiere in 2015, she seemed to be in an altogether sexier comfort zone of her own. “If they’re not careful, actresses can end up looking bought and paid for by a brand,” says Jessica Morgan, co-founder of the celebrity fashion blog Go Fug Yourself. “I think if you have a really good stylist, you can overcome that, but these are a lot of weird business decisions people have to make that they didn’t have to make 10 years ago.”

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Please Don’t Take “Office Cake Culture” Away From Us

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Outside of sugar, what is there to offer a ray of light in an otherwise gloomy work day? There’s flirting with a colleague – fun, but usually ill-advised (and not really an option if you’re a straight woman working in women’s magazines). There are cigarette breaks, which are just as bad for you as sugar, and much more expensive. But mainly, in this country, we rely on good old dependable tea – the crutch of our nation. When I was an office worker, on the really bad days I could spend about 30 per cent of my time standing in the kitchen, sighing heavily while waiting for the kettle to boil. And yet the joy of caffeine can only stretch so far.

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Michelle Williams on the Pleasure of Ageing and the Joys of Bringing Up a Girl

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Williams is charming and kind, but I do not get the sense that she’s an extrovert. She is guarded – which is entirely reasonable: it’s only a few years since she was hounded by paparazzi after the death of her daughter’s dad, Heath Ledger. She speaks deliberately and slowly, choosing her words with caution, and her sentences sometimes tail off into such a quiet whisper that my recording device doesn’t catch the audio at all.

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How The Crown Made Me a Reluctant Royalist

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Claire Foy turns the silent monarch I was previously familiar with into a human being with a beating heart – a woman who was young, and had to give up all semblance of a normal life in order to fulfil an inherited duty. I’m sorry, I’m starting to sound like the Daily Telegraph.

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Is It Ever Ethical to Turn Off the News?

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Is it psychologically wise to go cold turkey on current affairs, turning temporarily away from global doom and gloom? Or do we have a moral responsibility to keep listening and watching, regardless of our stress levels? We asked a charity worker, a professor of journalism, a politician, a columnist and a psychotherapist for their views.

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A Lesson Learnt in 2016: Living in the Now Is the Only Way to Live

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

In one sense, “Live in the moment!” is the kind of wisdom that you can buy on a beach towel, share in an Instagram meme or unwrap in a fortune cookie – so banal and overused that we barely register the phrase. At the other, more earnest end of the spectrum, it morphs into the idea of mindfulness – paying painstaking attention to every sensation and emotion as we experience it. But, this year, living in the moment has come to mean something else to me: it’s been practical, it’s been necessary and it’s been something of a relief.

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Ellen Is the Hero the World Needs this Week

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

She began The Ellen DeGeneres Show in 2003, and today it still runs five days a week. It has turned her into one of America’s biggest names. It’s as cosy and cheerful a show as you can imagine, and yet because DeGeneres presents it, it’s socially important: it’s a piece of mainstream culture helmed by a married lesbian, in an age where many in America want to roll back equal marriage rights. Gay girls growing up now can see a lesbian icon on the chat show favoured by their grandparents.

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The Abortion Pill – Giving Options to Women at Home and, Crucially, Further Afield

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

For Laura, the main concern was not the expense, but the fact that she was breaking the law. “I was panicking,” she says. “I thought, ‘The police are going to come to my door – they’re going to have caught on.’ It could have been really bad; career-wise, there’s no way I would have been able to keep up the teaching.” She told her husband that if the pill caused complications and he had to take her to the hospital, he mustn’t mention the medication she’d taken. “I remember saying, ‘Promise me you will not do that. Promise me you won’t.’”

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Maggie Aderin-Pocock on What It's Like to Be a Black Woman in Britain Today

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Several of those interviewed in Black Is The New Black say that their parents told them, “You have to work twice as hard as the next person to get the same recognition.” Aderin-Pocock jokes that in theory she should be working four times as hard, because she’s both black and female. While studying for her PhD, she once attended a lunch at which someone mistook her for a secretary. “There was a clatter of a fork and the table fell silent. Everybody looked at me, thinking ‘OK, she’s going to blow him up on the spot.’ And I thought about it for a second, and I said very calmly, ‘Actually no, I’m studying for my PhD here,’ and he said ‘Oh I didn’t realise!’ and continued the conversation.”

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It's Wrong to Assume Egg Freezing Is Just for Women Who Want to Delay Motherhood

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

f you read some of the articles and opinion pieces on the matter, you might assume that the life of a childless thirtysomething is a 24/7 funfair of casual sex and career striving – that we “delay motherhood” with a shrug, certain that we can try it in our forties, like taking a ceramics class or training for a marathon. But the women I know who tried to become mothers in their late thirties or forties have largely waited not because they wanted to go travelling first (although, personally, I think that’s a perfectly fine reason) – but because the opportunity wasn’t there to have a child earlier.

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The Hell of Enduring an Evening With a “Non-Asker”

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Important information for anyone updating their diary: the first week of October, for some reason, is National Champagne Week. I know this because I received a press release from the organisers, full of facts and figures to bump up any potential coverage I might be planning. Over the average adult’s lifetime of 60.3 years, it told me, he or she will drink 1,869 glasses of alcohol at parties, make 121 new friends, and chat to 4,462 different people. “That’s all very well,” I thought. “But how many of those chats do we spend silently wondering how to bring this tedious nightmare to an end?” 

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Why, 25 Years Later, this Self-Help Manual Remains Essential Reading

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Never – despite one friend’s enthusiastic championing of Why Men Marry Bitches – have I heard as much about a self-help book as I’ve heard about Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way. It’s the 1991 manual that has spent 25 years popping up in conversations between creatives and wannabe creatives of all types; it’s the printed version of a cheerleading squad, which promises to help anybody – be they a sculptor or a pharmacist by trade – to unleash their inner artist. 

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Unpicking the Pamela Anderson Fascination

Added on by Hattie Crisell.

Pamela Anderson and I, to be honest, have very little in common. She’s a Canadian pin-up with a history of wild, rock-star affairs (Tommy Lee, Bret Michaels, Kid Rock); I’m a British journalist who has never tried cocaine. She personifies glamour; I haven’t washed my face today. She has huge, pneumatic breasts; mine are several inches lower. Speaking of things that are close to my heart – did I mention that I love her? 

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