Thursday, February 09, 2006

happy birthday to alice

this is why I get the writer's almanac in my email every day. because I get a lot out of being reminded of people like alice walker:

It's the birthday of the novelist Alice Walker, born in Eatonton, Georgia (1944). She grew up the youngest of eight children. She went to Sarah Lawrence College and then took a trip to Africa. When she got back to college she was pregnant and seriously considering suicide. She began writing dozens of poems over the course of a week, barely eating or sleeping, and she shoved all the poems under the door of her poetry teacher, Muriel Rukeyser. Rukeyser showed the poems to her agent and they were eventually published as Alice Walker's first book, Once (1968).

Her first big success was The Color Purple (1982), which spent more than twenty-five weeks on The New York Times best-seller list and went on to win both the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. Walker was the first black woman ever to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

and folks criticize Ms. magazine, and rightly so, I mean, everything is deserving of criticism, right, but there will always be a special place in my heart for that publication. when I was a kid I always grabbed it first out of the mail stack to read the latest of the Stories for Free Children (and my all time favorite is the one about the mom trying to quit smoking while the daughter is trying to quit thumbsucking); and teenage me always grabbed it first out of the mail stack to read short fiction, by the likes of alice walker and margaret atwood.


good morning.

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