What Will You Give? #GivingTuesday

dinner table
From the dinner table…

Oh this time of year with its Black Friday, its Cyber Monday. All the ways that holidays have been co-opted to be about consumption, buying and buying more. And yet, sometimes it feels as if even when we’re surrounded by stuff, we’re empty.

And now Giving Tuesday. About five years ago, my family decided that our holiday tradition of gift-giving wasn’t very satisfying. Instead, we decided we’d donate in each other’s names to charities that mean something to each of us. For my sister who volunteers in a soup kitchen, a donation to the organization that runs it. For my brother, a donation to Michael J. Fox’s Foundation. And for me, a donation to Storyknife.

I’ve noticed that Storyknife isn’t the only nonprofit vying for your #GivingTuesday dollars. In fact, when I opened my email this Monday, there were no fewer than a dozen other good causes asking for my support.

Here’s the deal – I hope you’ll donate to Storyknife, either on Giving Tuesday or any other day until the end of this year. Our incredible matching donor, Nancy Nordhoff, founder and benefactor of Hedgebrook, isn’t limiting her largesse to one day.

I hope that you’ll give, not because we pestered you into it, but because you really believe in the vision that women writers deserve to have their work fostered, respected, elevated. And believe that Storyknife intends to do just that – has already done so with the eight amazing fellows we’ve hosted already. I think of the writing by women that has lifted me up when I felt like no one understood, Virgina Woolf, Annie Dillard, Toni Morrison, Jane Hirshfield, Barbara Kingsolver, Octavia Butler, Alice Hoffman, Ursula Le Guin, Mary Oliver, Terry Tempest Williams… I could keep listing for a long time.

So if a woman writer ever lifted you up, if your mother or auntie gave you a little faith in your story, if you are one of those women writers who cram your writing in between small children, errands, laundry, and sleep, consider donating to Storyknife as an investment.

I sometimes stand on the Storyknife property and look out at the mountains, imagining lighting the candles at dinner for six women writers who will change the world, month after month after month. Your donation is the match that lights that fire.

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