Friday, March 21, 2014

A Deer Can Be HOW Tall?

by Jan Annino

Virtual visits with gals are a match in March, Women’s History Month. They are also spot-on any month.
So how does one link girls, or women, with deer?

I’m researching the Pulitzer author who made a deer a character in
THE YEARLING, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings. She moved to my state, Florida, in 1928. I've looked into her child days to spin a story for young readers. Deer were a part of her girl days, although she was born & raised in Washington, D.C. Deer were also a part of her adult days at her farm at Cross Creek, Florida. You may want to spend time with the film, CROSS CREEK, if you haven't.
And like me, you may stop like a deer in the headlights, at the ethereal beauty of
the place.

Deer. It's a topic to look into, if you are looking into MKR.
Look sideways, long ways & inside out. As advised by one of my not-yet-met creativity mentors, Twyla Tharpe,  in her book THE CREATIVE HABIT.

I took a long good gracious gander. 
And, gotta lotta lore. Such as an Unc. Ben Franklin saying that every traveler should have deer’s legs.

Most of the deer research for the story about the accomplished MKR is trivia. The stuff a writer tosses into the catchall bin.
But it can be like yeast starter. A detail saved, to be written up into something more. One detail is that deer at a Panhandle reserve in Florida can be six feet tall. And yet, deer can also be two feet tall, such as in the Florida Keys. I’ve worked the giant deer, which aren’t native to the state, into a short story. Now I’d dearly like to plunk the 24-inch (female) & 30-inch tall (male) tiny deer into a tiny tale.

Dear writers, if  you have time, you may like the following sites in this, WHM.

Curated by two powerhouse librarians I follow, Margo Tannenbaum and Lisa Taylor. Here you will find well-written biography titles, often forthcoming.  Also glean the best women’s history performance groups & much more.

How cool is this? Follow a National Park Service linear and meandering trail that offers self-guided and ranger-led treks, attempting to explain why women couldn’t vote. Answer: There was no reason! Fortunately the very esteemed Ms. Harriet, Ms. Susan, Ms. Elizabeth, & others, agreed.

Librarians and their ilk like to award literature prizes and none are more industrious about that eye-numbing responsibility than the Amelia Bloomer folks affiliated with the American Library Association. The titles selected will be the best exemplars, in fiction and non-fiction for all ages. They pore over a gargantuan amount of books and read them upside down, forwards and backwards. You can even nominate a title, without a MLS.

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  1. Jan,
    Interesting take on deep research! I appreciate the resources for women's history month as well. I love the Amelia Bloomer Project. I'm going to link a bookmark that I discovered recently that highlights many titles:

    1. The outreach librarian files sound cool - thanks for the add & kind words.

  2. That Amelia Bloomer List is a terrific resource! I've added more books to my stack of to-be-reads. Thanks for linking, Jan.

    1. The Amelia Bloomer readers are so dedicated to their task. They have brought many new titles to me, also. Thanks for stopping by Patty.

  3. Thanks for the great resources. I love Rawlings (and her editor)!

    1. Oh, I hope they help your students or you.

      And Maxwell Perkins, MKR's legendary editor, who sent her to check on Fitzgerald, truly thought she was the tops.

      If you are ever more interested in MKR, The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Society would like you to connect with them. I just returned from presenting at their annual conference, on an aspect of MKR that most fascinates me, her childhood.

      happy reading!

  4. Jan, thank you for sharing excellent ideas and web sites.

  5. Hope they are helpful - thanks for the comment!