I decided to compile these essays for a number of reasons. Friends and family suggested—after reading some of the included works—that I should submit them for publication. Some of the biographical portions just needed to be told. I wanted to see if I could finish a book-length work. But maybe all of those are shallow or silly reasons.
The easiest explanation is that I love to write and I know there are people out there that love to read just as much as I do. I know there are college students struggling to find value in those essays professors—like the one I’ll be someday—are insisting they write. I know there are teenagers going through relationship drama or educational struggles. I know there are scholars who pick up anything that references their favorite works in the literary cannon.
Yes, I wrote this book to sell it to those people. But maybe I also wrote it to inspire them. Maybe I want to see more books like mine on the market, more writers at heart if not by trade who toss away the chains of self-doubt and plunge head-first into the world of published authors.
There certainly will be more books to come. Since I’m working on getting a Masters of Arts in English, I’m currently developing the graduate school version of this book as you read this foreword. I already have three essays to add to that collection. I’m also in the process of compiling and sorting over seven hundred poems for consideration as an anthology or a series of anthologies, and there are some children’s books in the works.
I’ve discovered something amazing—I’ve always been a writer. It’s the published part that I dreamed of as a little girl scrawling poems and prose by the light of the harvest moon. Been there. Done that. Got several t-shirts, as a matter of fact. But I didn’t have confidence in my writing even still, because my name hadn’t appeared on the cover of a printed book. What a silly designation, really, that you’re not an author until you’ve published a book. It’s nonsense.
The bibliography at the end of this book includes all of my previously published works as well as anything cited in any of the essays included in this anthology. It’s supposed to be in MLA format, but I never did memorize that or any other acronymic method of citation, not to mention these essays were written over several years’ time with the rules changing. Call me lazy if you will, but I didn’t see the need to go back and painstakingly reformat each bibliographic entry to suit the current regulations.
Read these essays. Enjoy them. Edit or review them. Write rebuttals and criticisms. I welcome feedback, and—whether you loved or hated what you’ve read here—you’re welcome to seek out my online presence for further interaction with me and my writing.