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Theresa Williams

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Member: TheresaWilliams

CollectionsYour library (950)

ReviewsNone

Tagspoetry (231), fiction (140), biography (58), poets (50), short stories (47), spirituality (45), reference (44), religion (42), literary criticism (41), memoir (30) — see all tags

MediaNot set (14), Book (936), Paper Book (807)

Cloudstag cloud, author cloud, tag mirror

About meI'm a teacher and writer. I teach Literature and Creative Writing at Bowling Green State University in Ohio, and I am the author of the novel THE SECRET OF HURRICANES.

For the record, I am not the author of the beaded handbags books or the novel, A SEASON OF ACCEPTANCE. I knew I should have kept my middle initial when HURRICANES came out, but I let my editor talk me out of it. Now people must picture me creating artful handbags during turbulent storms.

I am an INFP (if you believe in such things and if this kind of information is helpful to you in explaining who I am). I am quiet and generally shy and love solitude. Thus I don't know how I ended up being a university teacher, dealing with hundreds of students a year. Somehow it works out. It bothers me not at all to lock myself in a room for hours and read or write. I am curious (about almost everything). I still read the NEW YORKER, although it will never publish anything that I write. I read THE SUN. It publishes some of what I write, and turns some of it down, too. I live my life through feelings: As Theodore Roethke said, "We think by feeling. What is there to know?" I think the most important and powerful aspect of life is LOVE. I try to be authentic in everything I do.

Born January 24, 1956, I am an Aquarian. Now in my 50s, I feel at once the wise woman and the mischevious child. Even as a child I felt simultaneously old and young. I can be open to change and yet fiercely protective of my ideals.

I was born in Corona, California but spent most of my life in Eastern North Carolina. I grew up and married in Jacksonville, NC, moved to Greenville, NC in my thirties to go to college, and then moved to Ohio to study creative writing. I received my MFA in Fiction writing in 1989.

I used to say that I read for enlightenment and not for entertainment. But now I think everybody just has a different idea of what's entertaining. I like to be touched deeply or perhaps set on fire by what I read. When I write, I try to touch the reader (yes, and set the reader on fire, too). I believe writers and readers must be dismantled by going through a spiritual crisis. By spiritual what I mean really is a search for authenticity, the self: the kind of search undertaken by great artists such as William Blake, Mark Rothko, Frida Kahlo, John Berryman, James Wright, and Theodore Roethke. When we are put back together and order is restored, we are new (wiser) people.

I am particularly interested in a possible connection between art and mental illness. Ernest Becker's DENIAL OF DEATH explains a great deal to me about why some people create. In addition, the poet and university teacher Gregory Orr in his book POETRY AS SURVIVAL explains how making art helps us to give order to our lives and is thus beneficial to our mental health. A great deal of what I write is about suffering and redemption. I don't think redemption is a one-time happening; we experience it practically daily in dozens of ways, big or small. The literary term "Epiphany," for me, is an awakening to life and its choices.

I have recently started making videos at home and at my university. The classroom videos help the students tackle questions about their creative lives and help them explore literature. My YouTube channel is here: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=theresarrt7

In addition to THE SECRET OF HURRICANES, I've had stories published in journals and magazines such as THE SUN, SULPHUR RIVER LITERARY REVIEW, and HUNGER MOUNTAIN.

About my libraryThe books I am listing reflect both my personal and professional interests. This is a task ongoing and should take several weeks to complete. I own several poetry collections because I find poetry puts me in the frame of mind to write. I also teach a course in Modern Poetry at Bowling Green State University. I collect biographies, journals, and letters of writers and artists because I'm hungry to know more about the people who create art. I am also interested in children's literature with a dark slant, such as Gag's MILLIONS OF CATS, which I checked out of the school library millions of times when I was a child and the more recent FOX by Margaret Wild. Finally, I own many books about religion, mythology, fairy tales, and spirituality because I'm interested in the search for meaning through the ages.

GroupsArt is Life, INFP, Modern Poetry 2007 (BGSU)

Favorite authorsJames Agee, Richard Brautigan, Louise Erdrich, Pablo Neruda, Rainer Maria Rilke, Theodore Roethke, James Wright (Shared favorites)

Homepagehttp://theresawilliams.wordpress.com/

Real nameTheresa Williams

LocationNorthwest Ohio

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/TheresaWilliams (profile)
/catalog/TheresaWilliams (library)

Member sinceMay 16, 2007

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