• These Words Matter: Rachel Caine

    The first book I can remember reading all on my own was a collection of fairytales. Not the usual ones; this was an old edition, probably from the early 1900s, of the darker versions of the stories. It had gorgeous Art Nouveau illustrations and it was a hand-me-down from my grandmother. I barely understood most of the stories, but I read it over and over again. After that, I wanted to read more. Lots more. I quickly discovered that the “approved books for girls” at the school library (beyond Nancy Drew mysteries, which I devoured) were all about dating, love, and babysitting, and I wasn’t there for it. I wanted…

  • It’s Been a While…

    it's been a while

    So, it’s been a while. I started this blog in 2014, right after I got out of school. I wanted a space where I could share my thoughts on my favourite books, some writing woes and wisdoms, and things that inspired me to make positive change. As time went on, and I found it increasingly difficult to write about something new every week, I started writing about anything just so I’d have something to post. This space became a nuisance rather than a place to grow and explore. After a break of almost seven months, my hope for this space is reinstated. As I take on several new adventures in…

  • These Words Matter: Kit Frick

    These Words Matter: Kit Frick

    I didn’t pick up reading particularly quickly. Already the oldest in my class—age seven in first grade—I was outpaced by the kids who had been self-taught at three or four, and then by the six-year-olds who picked up reading lickety-split. By the middle of first grade, I was still struggling to read with Dick and Jane, Spot the dog, and Puff the cat. (Remember those “reading books” commonly used in classrooms all the way from the 1930s through the 90s?) If memory serves, I was treading water in my classroom’s “yellow” group for months, eager to move into the “green” group—the kids reading avidly and without assistance. At some point…

  • These Words Matter: Karen Gregory

    These Words Matter: Karen Gregory

    Books have been such a constant thread in my life. It’s hard to remember a time before I could read, let alone tease out the one book that made me into a reader. When I follow the thread back I think about what it means to be a reader beyond the functional, nuts and bolts ability. For me, it’s that capacity to inhabit another world, in partnership with the author or illustrator. To melt into a story and feel it living through you. This starts in a place long before independent reading for those children lucky enough to have access to books. I was one of the lucky ones. My…

  • These Words Matter: Alison McGhee

    Oh, Francie Nolan. Where are you now? Are you now? By my rough calculations, if you’re still alive, you’re close to 100 years old. I wish I could talk to you and find out how your life turned out. When I last saw you, you were wearing a dove-gray shirt and skirt, and you had good friends at work. You and your brother Neely used to talk about the old times while you ironed his union shirts. You loved your boyfriend but you wished you were in love with him. You wanted that wildness, that intensity. So did I. You were my kindred spirit growing up, even though you lived…

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