5 Influential and Inspiring Female Authors to Explore

I don’t know about you, but I find that I don’t particularly look for books by a certain author when I go to the bookstore. I tend to browse around until I find one that piques my interest. After looking through my own collection of (too many) books, I found that most of them were actually written by men! So, I went on an expedition to find some of the most inspiring and influential female authors to add to my ever-growing collection, that you would also enjoy. 

Mary Shelley

Mary Shelley is the author of the incredibly famous “Frankenstein”. While in Switzerland with her family and friends, they would get entertainment out of reading ghost stories to one another. Soon enough, Mary Shelley would start working on her first horror story. 

I’m sure most, if not all, people have seen some form of Victor Frankenstein and his monster in various types of media at some point in their life. Frankenstein has had multiple movie and television adaptations (even kids shows!), has become a classic Halloween character, and has even influenced music! Monster Mash, anyone? Frankenstein’s monster has been seen in a variety of pop culture and I don’t think we’ll see him going anywhere, anytime soon. 

If you want to learn more about Mary Shelley, such as her childhood, or what her life was like after writing “Frankenstein”, you can click here

Ursula Le Guin 

Stepping into the fantasy and sci-fi genres, Ursula Le Guin was critically acclaimed for her works revolving around magic, sorcery, and space battles. She has written books such as “The Left Hand of Darkness”, “The Dispossessed”, and “A Wizard of Earthsea”. Not only did she write fantasy and sci-fi novels, she also wrote more than 100 short stories and several poetry books — she’s even written over a dozen children’s books! She has provided so many different books to a wide audience.

If you want to read more about her accomplishments, I highly recommend taking a look at this article from The New York Times. Or you can check out her, very creative, official website here.

Yaa Gyasi 

Born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama, Yaa Gyasi has written two novels encompassing a variety of topics facing African culture. In her first book, “Homegoing”, Gyasi writes about two half-sisters that grow up in vastly different environments. One will have the experience of marrying an Englishman and living a comfortable lifestyle in Ghana’s Cape Coast Castle. While the other sister is captured during a raid on her village and is kept prisoner at the same castle, where she is sold into slavery. 

Gyasi has received several awards for her inspirational writing including the National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize and is a New York Times bestselling author for her second book “Transcendent Kingdom”. 

Margaret Atwood

Jumping back into authors that have had an influence on current pop culture, we have none other than Margaret Atwood who has been called the “Prophet of Dystopia”. You may have heard of the show “The Handmaid’s Tale” that was adapted from the book written by Margaret Atwood in 1985. Atwood has written dozens of novels, short fiction stories, children’s books, and even non-fiction. If you don’t believe me, take a look at her massive bibliography on her website!.

In addition to her contributions to the writing community, she has even earner her own segment on Masterclass.com where you can learn from her directly. In her online writing classes, you’ll learn how to have your writing remain timeless and relevant, just as she has done. 

Sayaka Murata

Considered one of Japan’s new voices in international fiction, Sayaka Murata broke waves with her book “Convenience Store Woman”, which was published in 2016. In her novel, Keiko Furukura, the main protagonist, gets a job at a nearby convenience store while she attends university. She follows the instructions of the store manual that tells her how she should talk and act. However, 36 years later she is still in the same job, fearing that she is a disappointment to her family. She has been in a routine of working in the familiar convenience store until a new employee begins working there, shaking up her structured lifestyle. 

Murata sold 660,000 copies of “Convenience Store Woman” in Japan alone has received wide critical acclaim. She has also become a Los Angeles Times bestseller, become and Amazon Best Book of the Month, and was named a Best Book of the Year by the New Yorker and several other publications. You can read about “Convenience Store Woman” and more of her accomplishments here.

After doing so much research and looking into so many authors, I’m excited to pick up some novels written by these authors, among the many others that I couldn’t fit into this post! These authors have also inspired me to explore my writing, and I hope they inspired you as well. 

After earning her master’s degree in forensic psychology, Kara Miller is enthusiastic about exploring other industries that bring out her creative side. She wishes to help inspire people with her writing Outside of writing in her free time, she also enjoys playing video games, reading, and sewing.

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