Kayla Williams, Publication of The Road Ahead, and More Women's History Month Reading Suggestions
This Week's WWrite Featured Post: Equal Pay, Equal Benefits:Acclaimed Veteran Writer Kayla Williams Presents Loretta Perfectus Walsh, the First Enlisted Woman in the U.S. Military This week's WWrite Blog, the third in the Women's History Month series, features veteran writer Kayla Williams as she presents Loretta Perfectus Walsh, the first enlisted woman in the U.S. Military. Williams is the director of the Center for Women Veterans at the Department of Veterans Affairs, and author of the acclaimed memoir, Love My Rifle More Than You. In her post, Williams discusses the pathbreaking military career of Loretta Perfectus Walsh in WWI. She was the first woman to officially enlist, as a woman, earning equal pay and benefits. Not to be missed!
Connie Ruzich, Fulbright Scholar, writer, and author of the WWI poetry blog, Behind Their Lines, will introduce CMH hero and WWI poet, Lt. John Hunter Wickersham, for next week's blog post.
The Road Ahead: Stories of the Forever War features WWrite Bloggers! This year, Adam Bonenberger and future WWrite blogger, Brian Castner (coming in June), published the startling, exceptional fiction collection, The Road Ahead: Stories of the Forever War (Pegasus Books, January 17, 2017). As Mary Roach, author of Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War, says in her praise on Castner's website, "The writers gathered in these pages are among the finest and the material they are working with is, by its nature, powerful and compelling. The result is stories that are by turns brutal and hilarious, dark and redemptive. Every one of them speaks to a truth we should not, cannot turn away from." Featured are past WWrite bloggers, Benjamin Busch and Kayla Williams, and future bloggers, Castner and Shannon Huffman Polson. In June, Castner will write about the lasting effects of WWI's outcome on today's conflicts.
Women's History Month Reading Suggestions: Katherine Anne Porter's "Pale Horse, Pale Rider," Willa Cather's One of Ours, and Edith Wharton's A Son at the Front
Published in 1939 in the short fiction collection with the same title, "Pale Horse, Pale Rider," Porter invites us to understand not only the deadly effects of WWI combat, but also the massive destruction caused by the Spanish flu epidemic through a heart-piercing love story between a young woman and a soldier who both become infected.
Willa Cather's Pulitzer Prize Winning One of Ours and Edith Wharton's A Son at the Front were published in 1923. Both deal with families who have had to say goodbye to sons during WWI. For a detailed analysis and comparison of the two books, see Julie Olin-Amenntorp's article in Cather Studies.