Michaela Coel, that woman who brought us I May Destroy You and Chewing Gum is now writing her first book, titled Misfits: A Personal Manifesto set to be published in September by Ebury.
Misfits: A Personal Manifesto will draw from topics Coel covered in her MacTaggart lecture at the Edinburgh Festival 2018, in which the writer and actor spoke unflinchingly about her experience as a black woman in the TV industry and her sexual assault. In her speech Coel praised her fellow misfits for their creativity and explained what she meant by misfit: “The term misfits takes on dual notions; a misfit is one who looks at life differently. Many however, are made into misfits because life looks at them differently; the UK’s black, Asian, and ginger communities for example… The term can be cross-generational and crosses concepts of gender or culture, simply by a desire for transparency, a desire to see another’s point of view. Misfits who visibly fit in will sometimes find themselves merging with the mainstream, for a feeling of safety.”
Coel’s book has been acquired by UK publisher Ebury and Henry Holt in the US, in a deal negotiated with her agents.
Ebury said that in the book, she “makes a compelling case for radical honesty”. It will be “a rousing and bold case against fitting in”, the publisher added, and “apowerful manifesto on how speaking your truth and owning your differences can transform your life”.
Marianne Tatepo, Ebury’s commissioning editor, said: “Ever since I first watched Chewing Gum, I knew that Michaela was one of a kind.” Tatepo says in Misfits: A Personal Manifesto Coel will “draw on the same kaleidoscope of ideas and emotions as her hit TV shows, and will inspire readers to reflect on their own relationship to power.”