Kathryn @The Book Date posts up a link on the last Wednesday of the month, which will stay open until the day before the next month’s link up goes live. If you want to join in, you can go and add your Connect Five post linkys there.
I struggled to find a connection between the books I read this month. But I think I’ve cracked it: inspirational figures. All of these authors / books, or their interviewees, definitely inspire(d) me in some way.
Margery Allingham is one of the great writers of the Golden Age of detective fiction. I love her books, and her detective, Campion. What I especially like about her books is the level of description, which is used to pace the novels and gives them a strong sense of place – and that’s definitely an influence on my own writing.
I also find Margery inspiring because she wasn’t an overnight success. In fact, she had been writing for over ten years before she was able to make a living from her books. It gives the rest of us hope…
Zen Cho is an incredible writer. The kind of writer whose books make you despair of ever being able to call yourself a writer, if that’s the standard. Her debut novel, Sorcerer to the Crown, blew me away. It’s absolutely flawless. I really admire her as a writer and, a little part of me thinks, “But, if she can do it, why can’t I? Right?”
I love Black Sabbath, but I can’t say I’m particularly inspired by Ozzy as a human being. That being said, there’s no doubt that his, and Sabbath’s, style influenced and changed music forever after.
The Marine Society
Not a person, but definitely an inspirational organisation. The Marine Society support seafarers around the world, helping them train in new skills and things of that nature; which is great. But they’ve also joined the fight against plastic pollution, and have been busily promoting zero waste options.
Marie Kondo pioneered her own brand of self-help through tidying. I gave it a go, and there’s definitely something to be said for it. I learned a lot from her method, and it’s made my house feel much lighter and more organised, as well as helping me to be less stressed out with all the things that need doing around here.
Sarah Addison Allen
I adore the magic and romance of Sarah Addison Allen’s books. She’s also quite an inspirational character herself, as a breast cancer survivor who regularly shares her own story to help others.
I just discovered Malika Moustadraf and was absolutely blown away by the beauty and honesty of her work. I think this short biography from Words Without Borders sums it up:
Malika Moustadraf (1962–2006) was a preeminent arabophone Moroccan writer and one of the forebears of the short story genre in Morocco. She died of kidney disease at the age of forty-four, leaving behind a novel (Wounds of the Soul and the Body, 1986) and a collection of short stories (Trente-Six, 2004), which takes its name from the psychiatric wing of the Casablanca hospital. She is celebrated for writing about life in the margins, and the female body and experience. Her work has been compared to that of Mohamed Choukri and her writing style is direct, unfiltered, and steeped in the language of Casablanca’s streets.
Brooke Hampton is somewhat difficult to describe. She’s the author of Enchanted Cedar: The Journey Home, invented the Holy Flow Parenting method, and she regularly publishes her own inspirational “memes” online. She’s created an amazing community online and makes a living for herself and her family in the process. Social media influencers, which is, I suppose, what Brooke does in many ways, aren’t everyone’s cup of tea; most of them aren’t mine. But Brooke transcends that ideal and has a lot of real things to say.
Kathy Reichs is an incredibly inspirational woman. She’s achieved an enormous amount of success in her professional life, as a successful forensic anthropologist and, later, a bestselling author. She’s testified at the International Criminal Court, been a producer on a TV series, and worked on recovery at the World Trade Centre on 9/11.
Voices of Powerful Women
Voices of Powerful Women was full of interviews with incredible women, all of whom are incredibly inspirational.
As the cover description says:
From environmentalists, humanitarians and Nobel Peace Prize winners to entrepreneurs, musicians and artists, these women discuss their work, their achievements, their hopes and their fears, offering inspiration and optimism for the future through their fascinating explanations of what they have achieved.
Were you inspired by any of these people? Who are your influences? Let’s chat!