Alice Munro has been my idol for many years because she writes about realistic characters in realistic situations. I’m also proud to tell you that she comes from my hometown of Wingham,Ontario,Canada. I’ve read nearly all her books. One of her short stories was made into a feature length movie called, “Away From Her”. She is a very brave author.
Alice Munro was criticized harshly by people from Wingham when she first began writing. Her stories are fiction but she writes with such honestly that people believed she was writing about them. Every fictional writer writes about what he/she knows. That’s what makes a good story. Making the characters believable is what makes fiction sing. She stands by her books and maintains they are fiction. They’re really wonderful!
Most of her books are written about small town life and the characters who live there. Anyone who lives in a small community will recognize the people there. When Alice Munro first started writing, she was a mother of three small girls and in an unhappy marriage. She began writing as an outlet and to enhance her life as a housewife and mother. Her early books were a series of short stories and she is world renown for being a short story writer. She has also written a few novels and a biography about her grandparents.
Alice Munro was first published in the New Yorker Magazine. That was no small feat for a young mother from small town Canada. She has won many awards including the prestigious Governor General’s Award and the Nobel Prize. Here is her online bio:
“Alice Munro grew up in Wingham, Ontario, and attended the University of Western Ontario. She has published eleven previous books.During her distinguished career she has been the recipient of many awards and prizes, including the W.H. Smith Prize, the National Book Circle Critics Award, the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction, the Lannan Literary Award, the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, and the Rea Award for the Short Story. In Canada, she has won the Governor General’s Award, the Giller Prize, the Trillium Book Award, and the Libris Award.Alice Munro and her husband divide their time between Clinton, Ontario, and Comox, British Columbia.” ( Her beloved second husband has since died).
My dream has always been to meet Alice Munro and I missed my opportunity a few years ago when she came to Wingham to be honoured. There’s a little garden on the Main Street of Wingham dedicated to her. I only heard about the occasion after it was over. I was very disappointed. She is getting older now (in her 80’s) and in poor health so I fear I may never fulfill my dream. In the meantime I will re-read all her books. You can find a list of them here.