Nancy Pelosi made history when she was sworn-in as the first female Speaker of the House back in 2007. Because the Democrats regained the House after the recent mid-term election, Pelosi is now poised to become the next Speaker when she’s sworn-in in January.
What does that have to do with this blog, you might ask? Well, while I was still struggling to find a publisher for Lee Marvin Point Blank, I lucked into a freelance position at Lucent Books, writing young adult biographies for their People in The News Series. Several were on assignment and several were pitched by yours truly. Nancy Pelosi was a successful pitch.
She has of course been demonized by the Republican Party almost as much as Hillary Clinton but the reason I was able to successfully pitch her as a bio subject was not just because of her historical status, but her amazing life as well. She is the daughter of a career-long politician (Mayor Tommy D’Alesandro) out of Baltimore; she entered the political arena because of a deathbed promise to a friend; she kept the GOP from dismantling both Social Security and Medicare….Fascinating stuff!
It also taught me a great deal more about biographical writing that help immeasurably with my research and writing of Lee Marvin Point Blank. How? Each chapter in the People in the News Series requires a theme that readers can recognize and possibly expand upon on their own. It’s a guideline that kept me in good stead for Marvin but deceptively hard for a young adult audience when writing about the complexities of Congress. I had also learned to write the introduction last as you never know how the book will turn out until it’s done. So, with that in mind, below is the table of contents and intro to my 2009 young adult biography on Nancy Pelosi.
Oh, and Donald Trump & the Republicans? If you still think women are not tough enough for the job of public office, with more than 100 women now elected to congress, remember the words of Nancy Pelosi herself when she stated that women were actually tougher than men: “Think of a lioness. You come anywhere near our cubs, you’re dead.”
– Dwayne Epstein