“People without hope not only don’t write novels, but what is more to the point, they don’t read them. They don’t take long looks at anything, because they lack the courage. The way to despair is to refuse to have any kind of experience, and the novel, of course, is a way to have experience.” — Flannery O’Connor, Mystery and Manners: Occasional Prose
I have always loved to read and write. My mom always modeled good reading habits at home and encouraged my reading and writing endeavors as long as they didn’t interfere with my sleep. (I was a notorious night-light reader.) Reading exposed me to the world in ways that my small-town upbringing could not have done alone. As a teacher, writer, and life-long reader and learner, I strongly believe that reading and writing can open doors for students by sharing experiences and inspiring their dreams.