October 3, 2012

We women who write

Filed under: The Writing Life — jenny @ 1:25 pm

I was asked to give the keynote address at the fabulous WomenWhoWrite conference in Madison, NJ this fall. Readers of this blog will know what a crazy honor that felt like to me. I mean, I’m the writer–but was I? really? a writer?–who for eleven years couldn’t reach the starting gate. Who kept seeking out other writers–real authors, I mean–and saying, like the orangutan in the Disney movie of The Jungle Book, “I want to be like you.”

Now here I was about to speak to a roomful of inspiring women who were walking/trudging/crawling along the same winding road and hoping to glean some hint of where to twist or turn. Here’s a transcript of the talk, in which I explained the landscape as I see it at this stage of the game. I hope you might find this helpful…please write and keep the conversation going!


  1. Jenny, I loved reading your keynote. I feel like we’ve discussed many points on its agenda along the way. Can’t imagine that it wasn’t a huge success with Women Who Write!

    Comment by Johanna — October 3, 2012 @ 3:40 pm

  2. Thank you, Johanna, for reading that whole thing. You know I love having this convo with you.

    Comment by jenny — October 3, 2012 @ 7:46 pm

  3. Congrats on doing the presentation. I’m certain it was helpful to many hopeful writers. Your observations are very sound.

    Comment by Jacqueline Seewald — October 4, 2012 @ 8:27 am

  4. I’m so sorry I didn’t get to hear this in person. You were so spot on and I love how you broke everything down so clearly. Thanks for making it available for me to read. :)

    Comment by Raquel Byrnes — October 5, 2012 @ 3:29 pm

  5. LOL Anyone who can quote from a song in The Jungle Book as a lead-up to a speech deserves to be asked back next year. And anyone who can quote from a song in The Jungle Book on a regular basis needs to get out of the house and away from the kids more. Just sayin’. Can’t wait to see you on your book tour this spring. I’ll have some pesto bread ready.

    Comment by Carolyn J. Rose — October 7, 2012 @ 5:43 pm

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