It's time to write more history!
(a note in honor of women's history month)
I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching at the start of 2023, to figure out what I’m doing as a coach and editor, who I’m helping, why I’m helping, how I can do it better… all quality, existential mid-life-crisis-y stuff.
Truth is, I love coaching writers. It’s like being a teacher without angry parent emails and annoying department chairs. I also love that coaching still lets me be a Historian on Viking because, well, who doesn’t love traveling around the world talking to fabulous and interesting people!
Along these lines, I’ve been thinking a lot about the kinds of writers I read, the kinds of writers I’ve worked with, and the kinds of writers I want to meet more of in the future.
So I went to my bookshelves looking for the answer…
I have my home library (love calling it that) divided with fiction on one wall of the dining room and nonfiction on the other, while academic nonfiction takes up a full wall-and-a-half in my office. (I am not exaggerating when I tell you we bought this house for the bookshelves!)
When I look at these shelves, and take in everything that brings me joy, and try to find the spaces that need filling by new, fabulous writers like you, the answer is so clear.
I want to read more books written by scholars who identify as women!
I want more books written by women armchair enthusiasts and passionate hobbyists!
I want more stories from women writing about the adventures in their lives!
Quite simply, what I want is more women confidently and boldly writing Nonfiction, in whatever form that takes.
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In the past year, I’ve had the privilege of watching many books come to life:
a history of a great Midwestern city through the lens of an iconic sport
a memoir by a woman wrongfully accused by the feds, who fought back and won!
a history of women’s and university clubs that will redefine the history of women in the Academy
a hilarious and honest guide for parents trying to balance their biz and their kids
a memoir by a woman who found a whole new part of herself, as a mother and a daughter, when she had her mother’s long-lost articles translated into English and could read them for the first time
a first-of-its-kind creative curriculum guide for artists
a family history that challenges the roles of religions in both our present culture and that of generations ago
These books span a range of nonfiction niches, but they all have one thing in common.
Each of these authors is a powerhouse of a woman with Authority over her story and a drive to write it. Her Authority might come from years of professional scholarship, or her lifelong passion, or the school of hard knocks, or the unexpected turns her life has taken.
How you claim your Authority is unique to you.
The book that you write in that Authority is your entry into the pantheon of women writers who know their story matters.
I know one thing for sure: it doesn’t matter where your Authority comes from; it matters that you write it.
If you are a woman standing strong in her Authority and ready to write your book, I’m here for you. I want you to be better, bolder, more confident in that Authority, and I want to read your book.
Help me help you.
Don’t you agree that it’s time for more women writers stamping their Authority onto our bookshelves?
I know you do.
Whether you are just beginning to formulate what that Authority looks like in book form, or you have a draft and trying to figure out what happens next, let me know. I have a range of coaching options to make sure you write your best book.
Grab a free chat with me today.
And whatever else you do this Women’s History Month, own it!
I’ve curated a new resource for nonfiction Authority writers like you. It’s a collection of the books, podcasts, newsletters, and go-to sites that I use as a coach and that you can use as you write. They are some of my favorites.
This resource will be available to all new subscribers here on Substack, but since you are already here, drop a comment below or dm me over on Instagram and let me know if you want a copy. I’ll email it to you promptly!
There are now only 3 spots left in my Deconstructing The Devil in the White City class online with Newberry Library on March 29. Don’t miss the chance to join 18 fellow Larson enthusiasts and nonfiction writers to talk craft and mastery.
The class runs from 2-4pm CST on March 29. It’s a small(er) group so we can share and learn from each other. I hope you’ll walk away with deep insight into why you don’t have to have a serial killer to write killer nonfiction (sorry, I couldn’t help myself ;-)
Speaking of books, I’m wrapping Month #1 of my informal book chat here on Substack today. Head over and let me know what you thought of The Man Who Could Move Clouds. I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!
For the month of March, we’re going to “Read like your writing depends on it!” some more with Mark Yaconelli’s Between the Listening and the Telling: How Stories can Save Us.
“Colum McCann says that storytelling is the great democracy, and Mark teaches us how we might be citizens of this beautiful concept”
Do you want to join me learning how to be citizens of storytelling? Grab a copy and stop on by!
Our first month of the book chat was a bit loose, so for March, I’m going to post up some questions to think about as you read. They’ll be up by next Wednesday over on the chat, so keep an eye out for them.
As ever, if you have any questions or ideas, let me know!
All book links head over to bookshop.org where I have an affiliate relationship because I believe in indie bookstores (but I’m not going to lie - I still shop on Amazon, too). Any purchases you make from these links supports local bookshops and I make a very small commission that I can then use to, you guessed it, buy books on bookshop.org and support my favorite local independent bookshops!