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Jacqueline Woodson Talks About the Creative Process Behind ‘Brown Girl Dreaming’

Woodson examined the memories as though they were “photographs” and pieced them together to make up a cohesive story. The inspiration behind this book came from the loss of her mother.

My mom died suddenly a few years back, and it kind of sent me on this journey of wanting to understand how I got to this place of writing all of these books and winning these awards, and being recognized as ‘A Writer.’ You know, who got me here? How did I get here, given the various circumstances of my life? Once my mom died, I realized the people I loved were quickly becoming ancestors. They were dying, they were getting old, they were losing memory. And with them went these stories. Growing up African American, in a culture that’s steeped in the tradition of telling stories orally, I knew that I had to speak to the people. I had to hear these stories. (The Wall Street Journal)

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