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  1. Key Member
    Student or Learner
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      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
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      • China
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      • China

    • Join Date: Oct 2007
    • Posts: 1,618
    #1

    get my own back for my failure

    I was the middle child of three, but there was a gap of five years on either side, and I hardly saw my father before I was eight. For this and other reasons I was somewhat lonely. I had the lonely child's habit of making up stories and holding conversations with imaginary persons, and I think from the very start my literary ambitions were misxed up with the feeling of being isolated and undervalued. I knew that I had a natural ability with words and a power of facing unpleasant facts, and I felf that this created a sort of private world in which I could get my own back for my failure in everyday life.

    What does the part in red bold mean? Is it an idiom? Thank you in advance.

  2. Senior Member
    Academic
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      • Native Language:
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      • United States
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    • Join Date: Oct 2008
    • Posts: 1,211
    #2

    Re: get my own back for my failure

    compensate for what I was missing


    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409
    #3

    Re: get my own back for my failure

    Jlinger:compensate for what I was missing
    That's what the author intends.

    However, the idiom 'to get my own back' means 'to do something unpleasant to someone because they have done something unpleasant to you".

    I knew that I had a natural ability with words
    Should have tempered his free-reining natural ability by consulting the dictionary more, perhaps?

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