If you use Facebook you know that you are challenged at times to come up with lists of one thing or another right on the spot and commit that list to a post for all the world to see. (Well at least to all of your friends). And that post better be witty too because the last thing you want to do is bore your friends. The latest challenge I’ve been handed is to list the 15 authors, without thinking very hard, who have changed my life. You have to compile this list in 15 minutes. I’ve resisted this challenge because I’m afraid I won’t be able to do it. The aging brain is a curious thing – these types of challenges become a little more stressful with each passing year. But, I’m throwing caution and fear to the wind right outside my door today and I’m setting the timer. Here goes.
Willa Cather – this early 20th century author from Nebraska always, always comes to the forefront of any list or discussion of authors important to me. The author of My Antonia, O’ Pioneers, One of Ours, Death Comes to the Archbishop, and many others, brings the Nebraska prairie to life in ways I could never have imagined. I have yet to pay homage to the historical site in Red Cloud devoted to this author, but it’s on my literary travel list.