“Traveling―it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta
Now that you've embarked on Mid-Continent Public Library's Winter Reading Challenge, Passport to Everywhere, here are some recommendations from The Story Center to check out in the final month of your journey. All resources are among the 2,000 items in The Story Center Collection, located at the Woodneath Library Center.
As reflections of the cultures in which they're told, folktales can be good introductions to people and places across the country and around the globe. At The Story Center, you'll find collections of folktales from India, Ireland, China, and many other countries. Books like The Annotated African American Folktales and Folktales Told Around the World feature compelling stories as well as background information that will help you understand those stories in context.
The Best American Travel Writing and The Best Women's Travel Writing are anthologies ready to be tossed in your knapsack, slipped into your suitcase, or stacked on your nightstand. People interested in the craft of travel writing should take a look at Globejotting: How to Write Extraordinary Travel Journals, Lonely Planet's Guide to Travel Writing, and On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction, which is available in paperback as well as electronically on OverDrive Digital Downloads.
From Maine to Minnesota to Missouri, you'll hear a great diversity of dialects as you travel across the U.S. The five volumes of the Dictionary of American Regional English will help you appreciate the richness of American English. For example, did you know that a “tavern” isn't just a place where some writers might hang out, but also a “loose-meat sandwich” (like a sloppy joe) in northwest Iowa and southeast South Dakota? Speaking of Iowa and South Dakota, if you're curious about the meanings of “loess” and “badlands,” check out Home Ground: A Guide to the American Landscape.
Although they don't circulate as do books in The Story Center Collection, 34 periodicals feature noteworthy contemporary writing in many genres as well as tips for writers and storytellers. Stop by and take a look at World Literature Today, The Missouri Review, The Writer, and Storytelling Magazine.
Good trip! Buen viaje! Safari njema! And remember to take your Library card.
The Story Center