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Vol. 23, No. 1: Appalachia

Pearl S. Buck, It’s Not You, It’s Me

by Jolie Lewis

Pearl, I’m sorry.

I’m not feeling it anymore. I tried. For years, I tried. You know I did.

I served on the board of your Birthplace in Pocahontas County, West Virginia. I read the biographies. I wrote grants and hired volunteers and emailed leaders across the state and researched themed tours for your museum. I taught sessions inspired by your work at writing conferences. I wrote and rewrote the material I’d gathered about you, trying to find the right angle into your complicated and fascinating life, each attempt longer than the last until I was sure I was working on a book. The hours I spent—I couldn’t begin to count them. I wouldn’t want to.

This article appears as an abstract above, the complete article can be accessed in Project Muse
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