It wasn’t Dickens. It wasn’t Eyre. It wasn’t even Hemingway.
The first book I ever read that filled me with the insatiable hunger to write a book of my own was Sheedy.
As in, Ally.
Long before she was brat-packing and High-Art-ing, even long before she was Ally, Alexandra Elizabeth Sheedy wrote and published a sweet and whimsical little book called She Was Nice to Mice. She was just 12. Yes, 12.
Now I was a few years younger than that when I first laid eyes on that book in the children’s room of the New Gloucester Public Library but I thought writing a book and getting it published had to be the coolest, most enviable thing a girl could do. (With the exception of getting to star with Lynda Carter on Wonder Woman–darn you, Debra Winger!)
Now, admittedly, it would take me a few years more than Ally to get a book deal. Okay, many more. But I can still see that cover in my mind, still remember the nine year-old me pulling it off the shelf and admiring its whimsical illustrations (drawn by the much older, 13 year-old Jessica Ann Levy), thinking to myself: I want to do that too…I bet I could do that too…
What do you remember as the moment or the book that caused your writing epiphany?