What book do you wish you had written?
I was tagged to answer this recently on Instagram by author @melaniejwalker as part of the #authorschallenge2019 hosted by @debratorreswrites .
I would love to write a book that had and has the impact of Flowers for Algernon.
Being a precocious reader with older siblings, I read this book when I was very young, sneaking it from my sister’s bookshelf. The story resonated with me and influenced my thinking. It’s one of the books I recommend for all highschoolers to read.
If you haven’t read Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes, go get a copy! It’s not a long book. I would consider it easy to read, even though all of the topics explored may not always be easy to think about. It’s about a mentally disabled young man who agrees to engage in an experiment to increase his intelligence. His story is told through a series of diary entries.
In my experience, even kids who aren’t into reading all that much seem to connect with this book. The story brings up loads of discussion worthy topics.
Flowers for Algernon always makes me think about the memoir, Switched On, by John Elder Robison, the true story of a person on the autism spectrum who participated in experiments meant to increase emotional intelligence. Switched On tells about his experiences during the procedure and the aftermath.
I recommend both of these books.
The IG prompt made me consider my own work. I am often intentional about why I write the novels I do and who, in both a general and specific sense, I hope to communicate with.
I guess I could say I have written exactly the book I wished to.
One of my novels is about a family dealing with grief. I wrote it because there was a need. I could not find a novel addressing the issue of impending loss and grief against the backdrop of a family also dealing with autism.
As I spend time in the querying trenches, the ability to see how a particular manuscript fulfilled its intended purpose, at least in part, is a great encouragement to me.
I hope to see all my novels reach the readers who need to hear the stories. I hope to someday soon know hearts are being touched.
© 2019, Donna Stone. All rights reserved.