“Write a letter to a fictional character. Bonus: If it is a character from a book, leave the letter in a copy of the book in a library or bookstore.”

I just reread Jane Austen’s Persuasion. Her choice of an older heroine, who has spent much of her adult life waiting, reminded me of the introduction to a wonderful collection of essays by women travelers from the 1700s to the present: “The late John Gardner once said that there are only two plots in all of literature. You go on a journey or a stranger comes to town. Since women, for so many years, were denied the journey, they were left with only one plot in their lives — to await the stranger. Indeed, there is essentially no picaresque tradition among women novelists. While the latter part of the twentieth century has seen a change of tendency, women’s literature from Austen to Woolf is by and large a literature about waiting, usually for love.” – Mary Morris: Maiden Voyages

And so I chose to write to Anne Elliott of Persuasion. A stalwart example of The Big Wait.

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