From the book : Weâ€™re still on the phone in our phone boxes. She tells me that my success is from the Devil, keeper of the wrong crib. She confronts me with the fact that I have used my own name in the novel â€“ if it is a story, why is the main character called Jeanette? Why?I canâ€™t remember a time when I wasnâ€™t setting my story against hers. It was my survival from the very beginning. Adopted children are self-invented because we have to be there is an absence, a void, a question mark at the very beginning of our lives. A crucial part of our story is gone, and violently, like a bomb in the womb.The baby explodes into an unknown world that is only knowable through some kind of a story â€“ of course that is how we all live, itâ€™s the narrative of our lives, but adoption drops you into the story after it has started. Itâ€™s like reading a book with the first few pages missing. Itâ€™s like arriving after curtain up. The feeling that something is missing never, ever leaves you â€“ and it canâ€™t, and it shouldnâ€™t, because something is missing.That isnâ€™t of its nature negative. The missing part, the missing past, can be an opening, not a void. It can be an entry as well as an exit. It is the fossil record, the imprint of another life, and although you can never have that life, your fingers trace the space where it might have been, and your fingers learn a kind of Braille.There are markings here, raised like welts. Read them. Read the hurt. Rewrite them. Rewrite the hurt. Itâ€™s why I am a writer â€“ I donâ€™t say â€˜decidedâ€™ to be, or â€˜becameâ€™. It was not an act of will or even a conscious choice. To avoid the narrow mesh of Mrs Wintersonâ€™s story I had to be able to tell my own. Part fact part fiction is what life is. And it is always a cover story. I wrote my way out. Simply magnificent story of this writer-to-be in front of a sadistic mother.