My Personal Top 10 Women Writers


It’s hard to describe what makes an author special. Some writers manage to move us emotionally, others woo us with their imaginary, astonish us with their beauty of expression.

And there is always that question: do their words matter? Do they make us see the world differently? Do they make us question things, or help us understand things better?

Here are my personal top ten women writers who moved me, astonished me and inspired me:

10) Simone de Beauvoir
“What would Prince Charming have for occupation if he had not to awaken the Sleeping Beauty?”

Simone de Beauvoir, The Second Sex

9) Christa Wolf
“Night thoughts have a different color than day thoughts, a different slant, more than anything else they know all the secret paths and chinks in the armor they can take advantage of to force their way into consciousness.”

Christa Wolf, City of Angels or Overcoat of Dr. Freud

8)Arundhati Roy
“To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never to forget.”

Arundhati Roy, The Cost of Living

7) Ann Radcliffe
“And since, in our passage through this world, painful circumstances occur more frequently than pleasing ones, and since our sense of evil is, I fear, more acute than our sense of good, we become the victims of our feelings, unless we can in some degree command them.”

Ann Radcliffe

6) Virginia Woolf
“How many times have people used a pen or paintbrush because they couldn’t pull the trigger?”

Virginia Woolf

5) Nadine Gordimer
“In every encounter between human beings there is a pace set that belongs to them, and that will be taken up in its own rhythm whenever they are together.”

Nadine Gordimer, None to Accompany Me

4) Joyce Carol Oates
“And this is the forbidden truth, the unspeakable taboo – that evil is not always repellent but frequently attractive; that it has the power to make of us not simply victims, as nature and accident do, but active accomplices.”

Joyce Carol Oates

3) Alicia Kozameh
“The events contradict History. Appearing from two different corners, they advance in opposite directions with a cadence that makes me think they’re on roller skates. And History, dumbfounded, wonders what to do with them. Poor little History.”

– Alicia Kozameh, 259 Leaps, the Last Immortal

2) Toni Morrison
“She is a friend of mind. She gather me, man. The pieces I am, she gather them and give them back to me in all the right order. It’s good, you know, when you got a woman who is a friend of your mind.”

Toni Morrison

1) Shirley Jackson
“Although the villagers had forgotten the ritual and lost the original black box, they still remembered to use stones.”

Shirley Jackson, The Lottery

%d bloggers like this: