Monday, January 7, 2013

About the Authors - Kimberly

"When we start at the center of ourselves, we discover something worthwhile extending toward the periphery of the circle."
Anne Morrow Lindbergh
"Gift from the Sea"

What are the stories behind the stories our women writers penned for Slants of Light: Stories and Poems From the Women's Writing Circle?  How has her unique journey embraced the collective experience of being a woman?  Our authors share this in  our "About the Author" series which begins with Kimberly.

"I have been writing stories since I was in middle school. I can still remember the assignment given to us in my 6th grade English class. A creative assignment-- you can write anything you like, just be sure to tell an interesting story. The task was given to us early in the school year, to encourage us to figure out what we like and talk about it. I often imagine teachers telling themselves, "This is easy enough...the kids will like it because it is so non-restrictive."

What my teacher did not, perhaps, anticipate, was that she would feed my hidden passion. Someone not only gave me permission, but encouragement to write and write and write. And once the gates were opened, I could not be satiated.

I submitted about twelve pages of text to that teacher. The story was about a dynamic duo who solved mysteries. There were ghosts, murders, and unexpected thrills. And I was hooked on writing and the art of storytelling forever.

When Susan asked our anthology contributors to write about what inspired us to tell our stories and share our voices, I laughed to myself. What inspired me? The same thing that inspired me as a middle-schooler. Writing. The thought of writing. Simply having someone say, "Why not write this for our anthology?" is enough inspiration to get me going.

Writing is like breathing. I need it, I want it, I will always do it.

The story I contributed for Slants of Light is one of some heartbreak. I wanted to tell this story in particular because it is one of failure. So many times in life, I find that people, and women especially, are embarrassed or even ashamed to fail. Many of us are perfectionists chasing the perfect dream: great job, great marriage, great home, great kids. But sometimes, we walk down a path only to find it was the wrong road. The wrong journey. None of it felt right from beginning to end, and yet we walked forward anyway.

My story, "Steps - And Missteps - In the Right Direction"  is about a failure that became a moment of teaching for the unsuspecting protagonist . . . ME! I love telling the story and hope it inspires readers to fall down, fall down a little harder, crash head-on, and LEARN. These are the things that make life worth living."

Kimberly Ely is an editor and adjunct professor at Eastern University in St. Davids, PA. She is pursuing her MFA at Arcadia University and resides in Downingtown, PA, with her husband, Mark.   Visit Kimberly at her blog:
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