• Jo Donaldson

National Author Day

National Author Day is observed November 1st of each year to recognizes the men and women who made American literature possible.

It is a day set aside to honor some of the literary greats of the 21st century and to encourage and inspire others. Not every author is a Mark Twain, John Steinbeck or Willa Cather; but each has a story to tell. The holiday provides a designated time to honor your local authors, as well as your favorite greats.

I found some history about this holiday under “Days of the Year.” Supposedly, in 1928, members of the Illinois Women’s Club were meeting to enjoy writings of some of their favorite authors when Nellie Verne Burt McPherson brought up the idea of having a day dedicated to American Authors. A teacher and avid lover of literature, she submitted the suggestion to the General Federation of Women’s Club.

In 1949, the United States Department of Commerce officially recognized National Author’s Day as a holiday, 20 years after McPherson began pushing for it. Then, National Author's Day was endorsed by the United States Department of Congress on November 1, 1949. It has been celebrated ever since in different ways

It’s a quiet and important holiday, but also a fun holiday. It is a day to honor your favorite authors and to encourage any writers in your life to keep working on their books. Writing a book is hard work. It takes time, sweat and tears to get words on the page. (Remember high school or college writing assignments).

So, thank your favorite authors for writing your favorite books and help budding writers and authors around you in any way you can.

Some recommend celebrating National Author’s Day by curling up with your favorite book, a cup of hot coffee or tea and spend time learning about something new, sharing an adventure or drifting into another world.

It also is a good time to go to a library or a bookstore to find a new read. I agree with that thought. Then go home and enjoy.

In Carroll County, Maryland, local writers can earn some money at the Agricultural Center’s Author Day event. This is an opportunity for local readers to support their area writers and let them know they are appreciated.

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