A Heroine At Fifty – To Kill A Mockingbird

I have a terrible confession to make:  I didn’t read To Kill A Mockingbird in high school, or junior high, or elementary school…or until I was a grown woman.

I’m not sure if it’s because I missed 11th grade English (I was an exchange student in Germany that year) or what, but the book never entered my consciousness until I was already an adult.  Of course, it had been in the public consciousness for a long, long, time by then.  Harper Lee was already the shy, hidden queen of American letters.  Everyone already knew what the words “Scout” and >>>Read more<<<

📅15 June 2010 7 comments
Invincible Louisa – Case Study #236236264646

It’s a singularly exciting, overwhelming, and trying time these days.  I find myself on quite the rollercoaster of ups and downs in terms of my day job, my writing, my relationships, and my own self-image.

Maybe it’s some kind of lunar phase or solar phenomenon (since everyone I know seems to be in upheaval), maybe it’s my age or something in the water.  I’m certainly at sea, and it turns out that all I really know for sure is what I have known how to do since the beginning…read myself into comfort and some semblance of sanity.

These days that >>>

📅08 June 2010 4 comments
Observations Upon Receipt Of My Own Book In The Mail

click to enlarge

I got a stack of galleys of my book in the mail.  A stack!

They are perfect for holding atop one’s head in celebration.  My new chapeau.

Apparently I have written and published a book.

And that thrills/excites/scares/thrills/scares/thrills me.  I guess I wasn’t prepared for the tactile quality of the books (cheap paperbacks, of course, in their galley form, but they’ll come out in hardcover so there are still surprises in store).  I wasn’t prepared to feel like maybe, just maybe, I have something in common with the heroines and authors I spent several wild months with >>>Read more<<<

📅01 June 2010 8 comments
Introducing…A Table of Contents!

Whenever I’m asked which heroines The Heroine’s Bookshelf includes, I try to go through the list and inevitably miss one or two authors.  Humiliation!  Shame!  Anyway, a lot of you have asked me who I talk about and in what context, and I figured I’d just tease you with the TOC for good measure:

Self: Lizzy Bennet, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Faith: Janie Crawford, Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
Happiness: Anne Shirley, Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
Dignity: Celie, The Color Purple by Alice Walker
Family Ties: Francie Nolan, A

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📅19 May 2010 9 comments
Literature’s Worst Mothers…Just in Time for Mother’s Day!

I could probably write three books on crappy mothers in literature (not to mention the angelic ones like Caroline Ingalls or Marmee), but a simple blog post will have to suffice as I reflect on a few of literature’s most insufficient, yet appealing, moms.  Who would you add to this  list?

no wire hangers!Scarlett O’Hara, Gone With the Wind:  Scarlett is not beautiful, nor is she a good mother at all.  We can barely chasten Rhett Butler for telling her a cat is a better mother than she, for Mrs. Hamilton/Kennedy/Butler extravagantly neglects the sheepish son and the ugly daughter who >>>Read more<<<

📅07 May 2010 4 comments