Charlene D’Avanzo: I’ve treasured books for as long as I can remember. As a kid I literally devoured the “Cherry Ames Student Nurse” series and remember my mother complaining that the books were too costly to be read in a day.
The series was set in World War Two when Cherry Ames solved problems and captured criminals “demonstrating that women can succeed in the public, working world”. Apparently I was a young feminist before I knew what the word meant!
No question, books are revered – poke around online and you’ll find lots of terrific literary quotes. A few of my favorites:
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss, I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!
“Books are a uniquely portable magic” – Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft.
“Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read. One does not love breathing.”
– Harper Lee To Kill a Mockingbird
“Reading is an active, imaginative act; it takes work.”―Khaled Hosseini
Another critical point: “If You Have Something To Say Write A Book”. But the reverse is also true – “Don’t Write Book Until You Have Something To Say”.
So why did I – a scientist who wrote technical marine research articles – decide to write fiction? As I explain in the rationale for book one in my Oceanographer Mara Tusconi series: “I was motivated to write Cold Blood, Hot Seaby stories of researchers maliciously targeted by climate change deniers”.
That’s what I wanted to get across – dedicated climate scientists I knew had been ridiculed by politicians who knew zero about our warming planet and the serious realities of climate change. I was livid, people needed to understand what was going on, and the “uniquely portable magic” of popular fiction was the best vehicle.