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Stevie Smith

Stevie Smith (1902-71) was born Florence Margaret in 1902. She lived in Palmers Green, London, and for much of her life worked, until retirement, as a secretary for the magazine publishers Sir George Newnes and Sir Neville Pearson. When she tried to publish a volume of poems, she was told to 'go away and write a novel'. Novel on Yellow Paper was the result, and it turned her into an instant celebrity. Two further novels (The Holiday and Over the Frontier) followed, but it is her poetry that has secured her legacy. In 1966 she received a Cholmondeley Award and in 1969 was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry