I am in the middle of a life long love affair with words. I wrote before I was literate by “dictating” to my mother, who would write my words on paper and I would then very carefully copy the letters with my crayons onto construction paper.
Some might say I was a preschool visionary or others might have said I was stubborn to the highest level. Perhaps I am a combination of both even today.
My first attempt with the A to Z blog challenge was 2011. I jumped in last minute with no plan at all and as often happens, with no plan in place, everything falls apart. I loved the concept and decided I would try it again, fail or no fail.
2012 came with a plan: because I love women’s history and I love 19th century literature, I decided to marry the two together and came up with Women in Literary History. I didn’t solely cover the 19th century, but those women were featured regularly because they are so often pushed aside in favor of the massive quantity of men who wrote and published more frequently. Our literary canon is very heavily weighted toward men.
So because I enjoyed the heck out of the 2012 series as well
as engaged people in some great discussion about these authors, I wanted to
take it for another ride now in 2013 with a new, catchier name "Literary Grannies from A to Z".
Am I a man basher or “hater”? I am not at all. I love men. I have a whole volume of poetry on this topic because so often I have talked to people who think “feminist” = “militant man hater” or “anyone who is stuck on women this and women that is being so exclusive, let me turn her volume down.”
Do you have a mother, sister, daughter, cousin, neighbor, close friend who is a woman?
Perhaps in honor of them, read the very short biographies I will be sharing along with images and fun facts about these women. You may discover someone very cool that until now you didn’t even know existed.
Why do I choose to use first names as my A to Z?
They are the names given to the woman, usually – sometimes the woman has adopted the name or it is the name she is known best as and I wanted to feature her with both names, like Naturalist Buffalo Bird Woman who is also named and known as Maxi'diwiac by her Hidatsa people. I am also featuring a Japanese Poet Ono No Komachi from the 11th Century and I was never able to determine which was her given name and which was her family name. I apologize in advance if I mixed up her name. I am thrilled to have found her in my poetry reading and so happy to share her legacy here.
Family names are usually not something thought about, we are just passed the name from one of our ancestors. I love my family name, Jordan, and continue to use it after marriage as well, partnered with the name my children bear, “Scott”. I wouldn’t want to be like Cher or Madonna or even French Writer/Performer Colette who was featured in last year’s series: Julie isn’t a name that stands on its own very well.
I love my other names, but I am most frequently referred to as “Julie,” except, possibly, “Mommy” which is a name I claim with a special pride.
You still have time to register for the A to Z Blogging Challenge.
Check it out here - and join the fun. You don't have to prepare but you even still have time for that as well.