By LAURIE VOSS
Circulation Supervisor, Warsaw Community Public Library
In February 1980, President Jimmy Carter designated one week in March as Women’s History Week. By 1986, with the help of Congress, the entire month of March was designated Women’s History Month.
In honor of this, and since we are a library, I thought I would talk about women writers who have made a difference, both in word and their work.
The author J.K. Rowling seemingly came out of nowhere with her Harry Potter series, eventually selling over 400 million copies. She started out as a single mother living in relative poverty, to becoming Britain’s 13th wealthiest person. Not letting that success go to her head, she established the Volant Charitable Trust, which has an annual budget of $5.1 million (British funds) to combat poverty and social inequality. Included in this trust is money and support for Multiple Sclerosis, from which her mother suffered.
Harper Lee, author of “To Kill a Mockingbird,” based her very successful 1960 book on an event that happened near her home town of Monroeville, Alabama in 1936. The book was immediately successful, winning her the Pulitzer Prize in 1961, the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2007, and in 2010 the National Medal of Arts. During this time, she was also awarded many honorary degrees. Her later book, actually said to be a first draft of the former release, was published in 2015. “Go Set a Watchman” was released with much fanfare, and has many critics of the piece. Harper Lee just recently passed on Feb. 19, 2016.
Who doesn’t recognize the author Judy Blume? Her first children’s book was published in 1969, and her numerous books have exceeded sales of $80 million and have been published in 32 languages. She has garnered the Margaret Edwards Award from the American Library Association for her books relating to teens.
Whether these authors count among your favorites, or someone else does, make it a point to stop at the Warsaw Community Public Library and check out your favorite women authors