Abi Morgan: BAFTA-award winning writer says ‘spilling her guts’ for memoir was ‘liberating’ | Ents & Arts News

Abi Morgan is not looking for sympathy in her book, This Is Not A Pity Memoir, she has told Sky News.

The BAFTA-winning screenwriter behind projects such as The Split and The Iron Lady, said writing the story of what happened to her family between 2018 and 2021 was “liberating”, adding: “All writers have an icy chip deep within them.”

“The book really covers the sort of two-and-a-half… three years, post-Jacob, now my husband, then my partner, collapsing following a brain seizure, and the sort of seven or eight months while he was in a coma,” she said.

“When he woke up and had developed a delusion, called Capgras delusion, which is the belief in imposters, and that was focused on me and the belief that I wasn’t Abi Morgan, his partner of 18 years, but someone who was working for the state.”

Once her partner woke up from his coma, Morgan was then diagnosed with a rare form of breast cancer, for which she needed a mastectomy and chemotherapy – and this was just before the pandemic hit.

“The book is really about how Jacob and I navigate our way through his recovery, his rehabilitation, and how Jacob and I found each other again at the same time,” she added.

“So it’s sort of eight months since Jacob’s collapse, and so it’s about the two of us really having our own mortality and the mortality of your family and how they survive that.”

She said she tried to find joy in the tragedy, adding: “It’s very painful at times, but I also think it’s very funny. And that’s what happens when joy and pain collide.”

‘It marked a moment in time’

During the writing process, Morgan knew she had to be “brutally honest” with herself, while protecting her children and husband.

“It’s the old adage that if you can put truth at the centre of it, it becomes a bit untouchable,” she told Sky News.

“But what I didn’t realise was, I was writing a love story because in many ways I’ve been with someone for 18 years, I had two children, it was ordinary, brilliant and at times chaotic and at times fabulous.

“And at times, things go wrong in any relationship – but I didn’t expect to write a love story, and that’s what’s essential, and that’s a really important part of the storytelling for me.”

But despite digging into her trauma, Morgan told Sky News she’s grateful she got the chance to write this book.

“I think the most important thing to me is that I was writing for Jacob and I wrote it for my family, and I wrote it to mark a moment in time and a really important moment in time.

“And… what feels so lucky and fortunate that is that we have been able to move on.

“That’s what it’s really trying to capture, is how you come through a crisis.”

This Isn’t A Pity Memoir by Abi Morgan, is available now.

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