“The Ratio is Narrowing,” an essay by journalism professor Madeleine Blais, appears in “A Story Larger than My Own: Women Writers Look Back on Their Lives and Careers,” published this month by the University of Chicago Press.
The piece by Blais looks back at her early years as a reporter, including the discrimination she faced as a female journalist in the 1960s, and explores how it has shaped her life as a writer.
“A Story Larger than My Own” is edited by Janet Burroway. According to the publisher, the essays and poems featured in the collection illustrate that even writers who achieve critical and commercial success experience a familiar pattern of highs and lows over the course of their careers. Along with success comes the pressure to sustain it, as well as a constant search for subject matter, all too frequent crises of confidence, the challenges of a changing publishing scene, and the difficulty of combining writing with the ordinary stuff of life—family, marriage, jobs. The contributors, all now over the age of 60, also confront the effects of aging, with its paradoxical duality of new limitations and newfound freedom.