Six months ago, at the beginning of 2018, I had a HUGE appetite for books. I couldn't quit adding them to my Amazon cart and I'd sniff out bookstores no matter where we were. My only resolution for the year was to read more books. Although I have already doubled the amount of books I read last year, the time that I have to sit down and read is hard to come by.
With four kids, life is busy enough. Add to that a traveling spouse, the arrival of summer, my writing life, and my at-home job, there simply aren't enough hours in a day/week/month to tackle the stack of books on my nightstand.
However, I have loved every minute that I HAVE had with these incredible women writers.
April, May, and June were filled with Rainbow Rowell, Maya Angelou, and Annie Dillard. I respect all three of these women so much, not only for their literary accomplishments but for the lives that they live.
So why is this important to me? What did I learn from them?
From Rainbow I learned to let the dialogue lead the storyline sometimes. If your characters are strong enough and clear enough, the reader will know what's going on by what they are saying and fill in the gaps of how they are saying it. Also - relationships are messy; show the mess. Maya reminded me that hard, bad, and terrifying things happen to women in the course of a lifetime. Keep singing. Keep writing. We are all beautiful though we may be damaged.
Annie puts so much emphasis on the natural details around her. I am sitting in the field next to her watching the animals scurry by, I had hear the creek the writes of. It's amazing how she is able to paint such vivid, believable pictures with words.
The women I chose this year are some of my favorites and these three are no exception. I will continue to TRY and read, to listen to books and podcast interviews and watch speaking events online when I have the time. I am absolutely loving what I'm learning from these women, about writing but also about life!