An Interview with Bethany C. Morrow, Author of So Many BeginningsBy Team Fierce Reads
Four young Black sisters come of age during the American Civil War in So Many Beginnings, a warm and powerful YA remix of the classic novel Little Women, by national bestselling author Bethany C. Morrow. What makes the March sisters fierce? The March sisters love each other fiercely. They’re fiercely loyal, fiercely individual. They’re a family who emancipated themselves as the Civil War waged on around them, who stayed together despite all the nation’s attempts to destroy and disconnect them. If you could give each of the March sisters one piece of advice, what would it be? This is such an interesting question. I don’t think I’d offer them any advice. I’m not sure many people are improved by unsolicited advice, honestly, and as Beth says in reference to her youngest sister, Amy, in So Many Beginnings, I trust each of them to continue growing and evolving. What's the most interesting thing you learned while researching So Many Beginnings? It would be impossible to decide! From the details of the Roanoke Island Freedpeople’s Colony, to the others discussed in the novel, to the different uses for local flora, to the food staples, to the thriving Black neighborhoods of Boston at the time…there were just too many terribly interesting lessons! If you'd met the March sisters as a teen, would you have been friends with any of them? I would definitely have been friends with Bethlehem and Jo, for sure. For one thing, I’m drawn to fellow creators, and I think our personalities complement. What's one fun fact most people don't know about you? How many siblings I have… or that my birth order makes me 7 of 9—which pleases the Trekkie in me, greatly. What's your favorite part of being an author? Getting to spend as much of my day as I like devoted to the thing I love best. There are so many parts of it that are rewarding, but I don’t think anything will ever dampen that. What's the most challenging part of being an author? Keeping your focus tight and refusing to be guided by other people’s desires and agendas. It’s a very collaborative industry, on many different levels, so you have to remember what you want to accomplish. What 3 words would you use to describe So Many Beginnings? Incisive. Tender. Important. So Many Beginnings by Bethany C. Morrow North Carolina, 1863. As the American Civil War rages on, the Freedmen's Colony of Roanoke Island is blossoming, a haven for the recently emancipated. Black people have begun building a community of their own, a refuge from the shadow of the "old life." It is where the March family has finally been able to safely put down roots with four young daughters: Meg, a teacher who longs to find love and start a family of her own. Jo, a writer whose words are too powerful to be contained. Beth, a talented seamstress searching for a higher purpose. Amy, a dancer eager to explore life outside her family's home. As the four March sisters come into their own as independent young women, they will face first love, health struggles, heartbreak, and new horizons. But they will face it all together.