'Moranthology': 6 stories from UK writing star Caitlin Moran

In her bestselling book 'How to be a Woman' released earlier this year, Caitlin Moran discussed feminism in the 21st century and the issues that women face today, as well as recalling her childhood and life as a journalist. In her new collection, 'Moranthology,' Moran discusses subjects as diverse as Keith Richards and the rudeness of people on the Internet. Here are 6 of her stories.

1. Interview preparation

The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated/Business Wire

After winning a contest run by The Observer for "Young Reporter of the Year," Moran was invited to their offices in London. She saw this as an opportunity to angle for a job and, to attempt to win over the editors, baked a lemon and cream sponge cake, which, having no other way to transport it, she brought to the city in a red suitcase. She had an hour to kill before she was expected at the office and, used to the distances between locations of her town, decided to sight-see. She got lost and turned up at the office extremely late, having badly blistered her feet due to wearing white boots with no socks. "The kindly folk at The Observer have, understandably, been very worried," Moran wrote. "A fifteen-year-old girl has been missing in London for three hours – then turns up weeping and limping." They then asked her if she'd like to work for them writing columns over the summer. She said she'd love to, and they asked her what ideas she had. "It had literally never occurred to me that I'd have to think of something to write," Moran wrote. To buy time, she opened the red suitcase. "'I made you a cake!' I say brightly," she wrote. "I carefully place the suitcase on the table... In the punishing August heat, during a three-hour walk around London, all the lemon cream inside the cake has split, and gone rancid."

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About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

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