I have read and enjoyed many books offering first hand accounts of the creative process of writers, the jumbled desks of writers, and the how-to-do-it tips of writers.
Add to this now Carolina Writers at Home, a terrific book of essays by Southern writers. Edited by Meg Reid, it is a veritable grab bag of delights. There are authors featured from both North and South Carolina and the text is enhanced with evocative, sepia-toned photos by Rob McDonald. As I have deep connections to North Carolina — my father was born and raised in Greensboro — I am especially fond of this book.
There are twenty-five essays here about homes from the Coast to the Mountains to the Piedmont. I took my time and read one each morning over several weeks. I savored them and found it was a happy way to begin my day.
The authors were given free rein and could write about any aspect of home that was important to them: space, possessions, time to write, wildlife, views, pets, gardens. It didn't matter just as long as it was what interested them.
Jill McCorkle's bookshelf - I couldn't resist taking a photo to show you
Some of the writers I was familiar with: Clyde Edgerton, Nikky Finney, Jill McCorkle. Some were new to me and I was happy to meet them.
George Singleton writes about moving from the home he had lived in for thirty-three years.
Kathryn Stripling Byer mourns the loss of a magnificent oak tree that once graced her yard. The only memento left now is its stump.
Daniel Wallace shares on his 'ark of things' from a small wooden cricket catcher to his collection of glass eyes. (Strangest collection ever? How does one start amassing those odd objects?)
Oh, these are grand musings by wonderful writers about a place dear to their heart. There is not a bad one in the bunch. I was lucky enough to have been given the hardback edition (best choice) but the book also is available in paperback.
When the outside world is topsy-turvy, it is good to be reminded how important it is to have a comfortable, safe place to come home to.
I think I'd like this book. My library doesn't have it, so I've put it on my Wish List. I love personal essays.ReplyDelete
Oh, Amazon had a hardbound copy for $11.38, so I just bought it!ReplyDelete
How exciting, Joan. I am glad your will have your own copy! I think you will enjoy it. It is such a peaceful read. Let me know.Delete
I haven't started reading it yet, but it's lovely just for the photographs. I'll dip into it this weekend.Delete
Joan, at first the photos didn't appeal to me - I wanted crisper images - but then I came to love their humid, twilight look.Delete
Sounds delightful! I'm eternally nosy about other people's lives/homes/writing processes. Will look this one up.ReplyDelete
Yes, Kathy, it is always a treat to see where other people - especially writers! - live and work. Here's your chance to sneak a peek!Delete
Oh, and my aunt and uncle live in Greensboro!ReplyDelete
Another sisters-separated-at-birth coincidence! Greensboro has really grown and changed from the time I spent summers there with grandparents, aunts, and cousins. I was just there last December and my brother and I visited the home where our dad grew up. A very nice family occupying it now. That made us feel good!Delete