Twenty-five years ago, a group of women from all over the state started to put together what would be, for the area, the first gathering of women writers. I remember the first meeting I attended, in a tall office building set in the middle of the green University of Kentucky campus. Women writers came together who would become well known: Alice Walker, Toni Cade Bamberra, and many others. We were all at the beginning of something big—we knew it, rejoiced in it, and wondered how time would define, or change, our original dream.
Like all authors, I face an interesting paradox when I travel to teach and read in my hometown—or, in this case, my home state.
I am grateful that the hometown aura will bring in listeners, both to my class and to the reading I will give next Saturday.
We are all curious about people who grew up near us, or are our age, or nearly, with the expectation of a shared point of view (and prejudices)—or at least shared experiences.