Each of the five women is different. We struggle as writers and as people. With respect to technique, I feel very different from these writers who craft gorgeous sentences. I am a journeyman. My characters move more in ten pages than theirs move in half a novel. Yet, their characters are deeper, more complex, and give a richer experience to the reader. We write for different audiences. Yet, I need these women to breathe–at least for now.
Tough times are overwhelming many folks right now; my current search for full-time work is the most difficult time I can remember. Although I’m more resilient than in earlier years, I can now ask for help and these women have been rising to the challenge. They help me find leads, write letters of support, and listen to my endless expressions of frustration. The things they do allow me to continue to juggle looking for work with doing the part-time work that I have now: freelance writing and an adjunct professorship.
They knock me out with their steadfastness, their encouragement, their caring. What unites us defies exact definition, but it includes this: we love story, words, literature, the search for the core of things. Maybe who they are is what allows me to keep moving.
Today Lois shared a link to her piece in the New York Times. Perhaps this says best why these women are my oxygen.