Partner Kathleen Farrell
Flask Walk, London NW3, UK
Foyle's bookshop, 107 Charing Cross Rd, London WC2H 0DT, UK
Kay Dick (29 July 1915 – 19 October 2001) was an English journalist, writer, novelist and autobiographer, who sometimes wrote under the name Edward Lane. Dick lived with Kathleen Farrell, "petite, sharp, reserved, very beautiful", from the middle of the 1930s to the end of the 1950s. Ivy Compton-Burnett left Kay Dick and Kathleen Farrell identical mirrors in her will, in a symbolic reiteration on her belief that they should not have split up.
Dick was born Kathleen Elsie Dick at Queen Charlotte's Hospital, London, England, UK. In early life, she worked at Foyle's bookshop in London's Charing Cross Road and, at 26, became the first woman director in English publishing at P.S. King & Son. She later became a journalist, working at the New Statesman. For many years, she edited the literary magazine The Windmill, under the nom de plume Edward Lane. Dick wrote five novels between 1949 and 1962, including the famous An Affair of Love (1953) and Solitaire (1958). She also wrote literary biography, researching the lives of Colette and Carlyle. In 1960 she published Pierrot, about the commedia dell'arte. Dick was a regular reviewer for The Times, The Spectator and Punch. Dick also edited several anthologies of stories and interviews with writers, including Ivy and Stevie (1971) and Friends and Friendship (1974). She was known for campaigning tirelessly and successfully for the introduction of the Public Lending Right, which pays royalties to authors when their books are borrowed from public libraries. In 1977, Dick published They, a series of dream sequences that won the South-East Arts literature prize. In 1984 she followed this with an acclaimed autobiographical novel, The Shelf, in which she examined a lesbian affair.
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