Although my calendar was full last week, I still wanted to respond to one more challenge from the Words Matter Week observance.
Challenge 2: Who are the writers who make your heart sing?
Known for her uncanny ability to understand adolescent minds, author Jaqueline Woodson is one of my favorites, whose words “sing,” throughout all of her characterizations.
Winner of the Coretta Scott King Award in 2001, her books go beyond being issue-relatedm but address universal themes such as teen pregnancy, gender/race issues, poverty, and economic status. Although these topics are sobering, there are recurring threads of hope and optimism.
In an interview for Publishers Weekly, she once stated, “If you can see the people you create, you can see the hope there.”
Influenced by writers such as James Baldwin and Virginia Hamilton, she developed a riveting style that treats the “invisibles”–thought as the marginalized–as wonderful people whose qualities haven’t been appreciated yet.
One of my favorite books of hers is Show Way, which is based on her own life, and the rich heritage of multi-generational family quilting that paralleled African-American historical events.