does not describe me fully
it is where to start
Saturday, March 20, 2010
A library-loving blog challenge. You comment. I donate.
Today, I join other bloggers who have chosen to promote awareness of and raise funds for local libraries. For every commenter on this post between now and March 27, 2010 12:01 a.m., I will donate $1 to my home town library: East Chicago, Indiana Public Library, up to a total amount of $200.
My hometown’s libraries were an oasis for me when I was young. There, I met great thinkers from centuries past as well as the popular writers of the day. Today, my home town suffers from significant economic hardship due not only to general economic woes, but also because much of its industrial base has left. A substantial portion of the town’s residents, predominantly African American and Latino, live below the poverty line. The East Chicago Public Library once helped me to dream. I’d like to help others do the same.
The challenge is easy. If you comment below, I will provide the East Chicago Public Library a gift. If you don’t know what to say in your comment, “I love libraries” will do.
Note that my pledge is “per commenter”—so if a single person leaves 50 comments, that still only counts once! But you can do more by spreading the word ... please link to this post, tweet about it, and send your friends here so they can comment and raise more money.
If you’re moved to make a flat-fee donation to your library, or to start your own challenge, you are quite welcome, and please leave that information in the comments.
The official time period for this challenge is March 23-27. You may find a complete list of participating bloggers (or other sites where you can help libraries just by leaving a comment!) at the following link: http://writerjenn.livejournal.com/
UPDATE: 65 wonderful people left comments. Thank you! I increased my contribution to $2 per commenter and have sent the East Chicago Public Library a check for $130.
My writing frequently explores multicultural themes. Born in Puerto Rico, I moved at a young age to the U.S., where my parents became Pentecostal ministers. Early immersion in Latino and religious cultures preceded later experiences as a businesswoman, a White House Fellow, and life aboard a trawler cruising from Martha’s Vineyard to South America. These sometimes incompatible worlds have given me a respectful outlook toward differing points of view. My short stories, poems, and essays reflect my own inclusive, yet sharply defined, journey across cultural and socioeconomic boundaries. I recently published Peace on the Journey, a poetry collection which explores the theme of renewal in the face of adversity.
The defining image of this blog is a waterfall. Its inspiration comes from a scene in one of my novels in which the infant protagonist escapes her mother’s attention and wanders off to a nearby waterfall. While there, she experiences a mysterious sense of wellbeing, which she yearns to replicate for the rest of her life.
"I have made love to my writing and am now in the afterglow."
"Insist on yourself; never imitate. Your own gift you can present every moment with the cumulative force of a whole life's cultivation; but of the adopted talent of another you have only an extemporaneous half possession... Do that which is assigned to you, and you cannot hope too much or dare too much."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
About his fictional town Macondo, widely acknowledged to be inspired by his real home town of Aracataca, Colombia. “Macondo is not so much a place as it is a state of mind.”
Gabriel Garcia Marquez
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle."
"The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers fear."
"The heart has its reasons of which reason knows nothing."
Blaise Pascal, Pensées
"There is vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action and, because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly... to keep the channel open."