Why Tall Poppy Writers? Why not? Why wouldn’t you create a group of women, all in it for the same thing, ready and willing to help each other? Why wouldn’t you?
Whenever money becomes scares and competition remains the same it becomes harder and harder for women to be heard (because being heard takes time, if not money). Even though there are more women then men in this chorus, we are busy women. We are working, raising families, walking our dogs. We are picking up the towels in the bedrooms, bringing home milk and buying birthday cards for our parents. When publishing had money, publishers were freer to help build careers slowly over years, nurture the woman writer who was busily keeping worlds spinning. Now, it’s harder for everyone.
Here’s something else. Where do you find out about books, the newspaper, magazines, bookstore, library? How do you imagine those places find the books they write about, buy and feature? Well, it’s reviews and lists, but women writers are underrepresented in all areas of review & often these lists.
Slate.com wrote: “The bookish blogosphere continues to debate whether the New York Times—and, by extension, other cultural gatekeepers—really does give white male fiction writers preferential coverage over authors of the distaff and ethnic variety . . . So we decided to gather some statistics in order to determine whether the Times’ book pages really are a boys’ club.”
—338 were written by men (62 percent of the total)
—207 were written by women (38 percent of the total)
Of the 101 books that received two reviews in that period:
—72 were written by men (71 percent)
—29 were written by women (29 percent)
When Dick Meyer’s NPR list of 100 Best Books of the Twentieth Century was published it only included 7 books written by women
And always there were more female authors than men.
Silence. Can you hear it? That’s the silence when women voices are not proportionaly invited to the party.
But I believe that this is not what everyone wants men or women. I also believe in the idea of six degrees of separation from the play of that same name:
“I read somewhere that everybody on this planet is separated by only six other people. Six degrees of separation between us and everyone else on this planet. The President of the United States, a gondolier in Venice, just fill in the names. I find it extremely comforting that we’re so close… I am bound, you are bound, to everyone on this planet by a trail of six people.”
Nobody binds people together like women do.
We at Tall Poppy Writers want to create a trail.
We want to blaze that trail.
I want to introduce my self, I’m Ann Garvin, and write funny and sad stories about people, like you and me. Imperfect people. Good people. I’d like to introduce to you my and fellow writers.
Each one brings something different, wonderful, and magical to writing. I hope that you will, stay for a while. Find an author, a book. I hope you will tell your friends and will raise the voices of women writers who can’t get it done for themselves (because those washcloths don’t walk themselves to the laundry, because those kids don’t get the ER by themselves, because their parents might need a little help remembering to eat dinner.)
We are the Tall Poppy Writers and we want to help smart readers find good books.