|Beth Dotson Brown||
New: See Beth's May 2013 appearance on KET's Connections with Renee Shaw
Read Beth's reflection on her writing life at Peace Garden Writer
Listen to Beth's interview
Beth serves on the Board of the Kentucky Women Writers Conference.
When I was a girl,
someone introduced me to the idea that you can never truly understand
another person’s experience unless you’re able to walk in his or her
shoes. I wish I could remember who planted that idea in the malleable mind
of my youth because in many ways it has formed who I am and the kind of work
I wanted to try on all
sorts of shoes, so I began writing fiction. In a short story, play or novel,
I can become a person I am not and, through my characters, see the world
through different eyes.
wasn’t enough for me. I decided to also delve into journalism. What a
wonderful choice for someone who wants to amble along with another person! When
I interview people, I ask the question then I listen. I try to truly hear
what they are saying. I ask more questions to comprehend it more deeply.
Then I write about it to share it with others.
Walking these roads has
also led me to nonprofit organizations where people do work I admire and
want to support. When nonprofits share their stories and those of the people
they work with, the public grows in awareness and desire to support the good
work. And I put on yet another pair of shoes.
All of those
opportunities also introduced me to others who like to dance with words,
aspiring writers who thrive on sharing their creativity and their own
stories. From my multiple experiences, I crafted classes and workshops,
began mentoring writers and found new roads to explore.
companions—fictional or true-to-life—march me up steep hills or
treacherous mountains. On other days they ask me to stroll with them through
fields of flowers or along peaceful creeks. There are even times when we use
a passport, try another language and taste the local delicacies. Wherever we
go, it’s always an adventure for the mind, heart and soul.
write because I must. The words are in me, waiting to be invited to dance.
The music is beginning. Will you join me?
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