Misfits: A Personal Manifesto, Michaela Coel is an inspiring, short read. I very much admire Michaela Coel’s work, I’m a big fan of I May Destroy You and Chewing gum. I think she’s incredibly talented, brilliant. IMDY is like nothing I’d ever seen and I was blown away by it. Had us all in its grip a summer or two ago (was it even summer? The last two years have blurred)

I’m sure everyone has seen I May Destroy You by now but in case you haven’t, here’s a trailer:

I’m always inspired by who she would’ve had to be in order to see her vision through despite high industry and societal barriers. Talent is never enough , we all know that- especially not as a Black woman in a very white space. Especially as a daughter of a working class immigrant. Especially in this England. The determination and perseverance it would have taken to succeed in this capacity can’t be underestimated.

It’s been inspiring to read parts of Coel’s journey in her own words- from her childhood to the present. Her MacTaggart speech (which is the basis of this book) shows vulnerability in sharing adversities and prejudices she has encountered. How she overcame some. How much she loves, enjoys and respects her craft. How she’s used her power to decline. How sometimes she’s actually felt powerless

Most importantly, how She used her power to define herself as a Misfit and found inspiration in loving, owning her self-definition. Coel celebrates what makes her different in the industry, including her race, gender and class. Also as much as she can, speaking up and striving for her projects to be implemented on her own terms

This small book showcases her wit, humour and frankness…..there’s a pretty well used moth in there too. I appreciate how personal and honest it is. I can’t wait to see what she does in future!

Michaela Coel’s MacTaggart speech in full below:

I included this book in my list of 7 Books by Black British writers in my stacks this month

Misfits: A Personal Manifesto by Michaela Coel. Published by Penguin 2021

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