It being the start of a new year and all, I thought it appropriate that I fulfill at least one of my news years resolutions. Not that I actually made any that were specific to this year, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t certain things I have wanted to do for quite some time.
In a little over a week, for instance, I will be going on a plane for the first time in my life! It may seem like a small accomplishment, but for someone who grew up on a farm, experiencing only a small portion of what the world had to offer, for me this is rated as being a “big deal”. It has definitely been on my list of things to accomplish.
Another new years resolution that may be a little more difficult to accomplish is taking a trip through all of Europe and Asia. In truth, that dream encompasses every country in the world, but this is a little more practical. I have been to most of Canada, but never have I crossed its borders, and that is something I would like to change.
Today, I began fulfilling one of my new years resolutions that I could have acted upon any time, but time constraints and other distractions prevented me from doing so. My resolution was to indulge in a genre of literature that was not given birth purely from the imagination. In other words, to read about something that actually happened; something which greatly impacted life as we know it.
“On Their Own: Women Journalists and the American Experience in Vietnam” by Joyce Hoffmann
This is a book that I have had in my possession for a while, but hadn’t got around to reading it until today. It was published in 2008, but it addressed events that date back to the early 1900’s, back when women had only just begun to find their place in the field of journalism.
It follows the life of Beverly Deepe, an up and coming journalist who was fighting for her right to enter the war torn country of Vietnam and actively use her expertise as a correspondent in order to tell her story of what took place there in the 1960’s.
I have only read the first couple of pages, but I am already finding myself riveted. Reading a story where you know everything that happens within the pages was once a reality makes for a whole new reading experience. I find it awe inspiring to read about other people, especially women, who overcome adversities and start a chain reaction of events which can lead to an entire overhaul of the way we think.
I will let you know more once I have completed the actual reading of this novel, but until then, here is the book synopsis to get you started:
“In unprecedented numbers beginning in the 1960s, women defied tradition and began to take for themselves the warfront assignments that few American editors were inclined to offer any female. Their print and broadcast reports of America’s twenty-year entaglement in Southeast Asia enlarged America’s understanding of the war and left an indelible mark on journalism. Propelled by a desire to tell their generation’s biggest story, most of the women who aspired to this mythic male pursuit landed in Saigon on one-way tickets, with near-empty wallets and little experience. In a series of overlapping biographies about a central group of women who invented themselves as war correspondents, this book tells a gripping yet largely unknown story of perseverance and triumph.”
May all of your new years resolutions come true, and that your lives continue to be enriched by the world in writing.