Must Write: Edna Staebler's Diaries

September 30, 2005|
Must Write: Edna Staebler's Diaries by Christl Verduyn
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Long before she became the renowned author of the best-selling Schmecks cookbooks, an award-winning journalist for magazines such as Macleans, and a creative non-fiction mentor, Edna Staebler was a writer of a different sort. Staebler began serious diary writing at the age of sixteen and continued to write for over eighty years. Must Write: Edna Staebler’s Diaries draws from these diaries selections that map Staebler’s construction of herself as a writer and documents her frustrations and struggles, along with her desire to express herself, in writing. She felt she must write—that not to write was a “denial of life”—while at the same time she doubted the value of her scribblings.

Spanning much of the twentieth century—each decade is introduced by an overview of key events in the author’s life during that period—the diaries vividly illuminate both her intensely personal experiences and her broader social world. The volume also presents four key examples of Staebler’s public writing: her first published magazine article; her first award-winning publication; the opening chapter of her book Cape Breton Harbour; and her lively account of the Great Cookie War. Must Write: Edna Staebler’s Diaries portrays an ordinary woman’s struggle to write in the context of her lived experience. “All my life I have talked about writing and kept scribbling in my notebook, as if that makes me a writer,” wrote Staebler in 1986. This volume argues that the very act of writing the diaries, with all their contradictory accounts of writerly ambition, success, and conflict, made Staebler the writer she yearned to be.

Christl Verduyn is a professor of English and Canadian Studies at Mount Allison University, where she holds the Davidson Chair in Canadian Studies and is the director of the Centre for Canadian Studies. Most recent publications include Asian Canadian Writing Beyond Autoethnography, co-edited with Eleanor Ty (WLU Press, 2008), Archival ...
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Title:Must Write: Edna Staebler's DiariesFormat:PaperbackProduct dimensions:312 pages, 8.98 X 5.99 X 0.8 inShipping dimensions:312 pages, 8.98 X 5.99 X 0.8 inPublished:September 30, 2005Publisher:Wilfrid Laurier University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0889204810

ISBN - 13:9780889204812

Appropriate for ages: All ages

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