Reading Ohio: A Project

Geographically nearly Northeastern U.S. but considered Midwestern–and long ago western frontier!, Ohio is often, as is so much of the U.S. midsection, overlooked by those on the coasts (excepting, of course, that madness every four years known as “presidential campaign”). But it has produced its share of authors, from regional to well-known. Over the years, I’ve found myself compiling a mental list–the memoir of that local author, that prize-winner I’ve never gotten around to, this book on an Ohio historic event. I compiled the list, but I didn’t read from it. So now’s the time, the start.

Map of Ohio AuthorsI’ve blogged about this thought, this loose plan, again and again, and now, now I’m finally starting. Reading Ohio.

This will be a fun project, I think. And unlike other projects where I’ve posted lists then long-neglected, this one will have no posted list, but will be the focus for much of the remainder of this year. (With a few exceptions, I do believe.) It will encompass different genres and eras and a wide variety of authors–some of whom I hadn’t even heard of before I began this project, others who I’ve been meaning to get to for years. It already has pushed me into reading poetry, a type of writing I most usually avoid. I’m also hoping to add a few “field trips” into the mix; there are a few sites I can think of that will tie into this project.

I’m defining “Ohioan” a little loosely. So many people move so frequently among the many U.S. states, both currently and historically, that there are few authors who have lived their entire lives in this state. So I am looking at authors who spent a significant time of their lives here: growing up in Ohio, going to school here, living and working here for many years. When the whim strikes me I may even strike “significant” from the definition.

And now? The reading!

8 thoughts on “Reading Ohio: A Project”

  1. This sounds like an interesting project, Amanda. I look forward to reading your posts. Of the authors you listed, I’d say my favourite is Robert McCloskey. Homer Price was set in Ohio, I think.

    Have you done other state projects?

    1. Thanks, Cleo. I hope it’s going to be as much fun as I’m expecting. I haven’t read most of the authors on the map,yet, so it will be a lot of discovering.

      I haven’t done any previous state projects, and I’m mostly doing an Ohio project because that’s where I’ve lived my whole life. I’ve heard about a lot of Ohio authors over the years, yet never managed to actually read most of them. Time to change that!

  2. I absolutely love Helen Hooven Santmeyer’s And Ladies of the Club. It is a doorstopper of a book, but is wonderful history.

    1. I’d not heard of Santmeyer before I started doing some Ohio authors research, but my mom has read And Ladies of the Club and thinks I would like it. We’ll see if I actually get to it… Thanks for stopping by!

    1. Ack, an unintentional oversight! I was sure he was on my list somewhere…and now I’m not sure where to fit him on the map. Ah well, the map was never intended to be all-inclusive anyways.

  3. I was planning to visit Thurber House when we were in Columbus but we ran out of time and the kids were exhausted. Too bad. Maybe when we get a chance to go back.

    1. Oh, that’s too bad you weren’t able to visit. Hopefully you’ll get the chance. I’ve only been to two authors’ houses: Mark Twain in Hartford, Connecticut, and Nathaniel Hawthorne in Salem, Massachusetts. The only times I’ve been to Columbus–despite living in Ohio my whole life!–were school trips in high school. One of these days…

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: