Monday, November 17, 2014

Wearing Cinderella’s Slippers



This is my first post for The Stiletto Gang. I feel fortunate to be asked to join the group. Already, the other posters have sent me warm welcoming messages, which I very much appreciate. A grand thing about the writing community is the support offered and received. Maybe there is an enabling factor that urges authors who work so much in solitude to reach out to others who aspire to follow their path. An overwhelming generosity of spirit flows from writers who have made their mark to those toiling to achieve success.


From looking at past posts, I see that I’ll be filling a spot long held by Evelyn David, one of the founding members of the blog and a very prolific writing team of Marian Edelman Borden and Rhonda Dossett. I’m humbled by the opportunity and know I have large shoes to fill. And, I’m grateful to my fellow posters for handing me Cinderella’s slippers. I just hope I don’t lose one or, if I do, that it’s returned by a prince!

As I considered my first message, I kept thinking about shoes. Shoes often seem to have been used in literature to define women. Consider the epic battle that ensues when Dorothy gets the witch’s ruby red slippers. Yet, eventually, those shoes become the vehicle that transports Dorothy home, on her own power.

When I was young, after school, I would wait in my mother’s classroom while she attended teachers’ meetings. I would listen to the footsteps coming down the hall and learned to recognize hers returning.

Later, when I went out into the workplace, I saw women navigating the sidewalks in high heels, their staccato tapping emphasizing their focus and determination as well as their rushing to the next appointment. The sound of their steps signaled a giddy assurance that they were in the right place and making important contributions through their work.

When I visited New York City, I walked along the streets, feeling a stronger connection with the place as my sneakers trod its thoroughfares. I had read that Grace Kelly, Princess of Monaco, who loved to travel, adored having someone stop and ask her for directions in a location she was visiting, because that made her feel as if she were part of the place. I remember my own thrill when I advised a tourist on a New York street corner. A sense of belonging is so reassuring.

I guess my favorite shoe image comes from To Kill a Mockingbird, when young Scout realizes Atticus is correct in telling her we never truly understand a person until we have a chance to walk in his shoes. To me, the scene where Scout stands on Boo Radley’s porch envisioning all that had happened in their town through his eyes is a truly powerful piece of writing.


So, thank you, Stiletto Gang, for including me among your posters. Thanks for your encouragement and for believing in me, a short story writer who strives to be a novelist. And, thanks for providing this forum for those of us who love mystery, romance, suspense, thrills, and good writing.




A legislative attorney and former law librarian, Paula Gail Benson’s short stories have been published in Kings River Life, the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable, Mystery Times Ten 2013 (Buddhapuss Ink), and A Tall Ship, a Star, and Plunder (Dark Oak Press and Media, 2014). Her next short story, “Moving On,” will appear in A Shaker of Margaritas: That Mysterious Woman, an anthology due to be released by Mozark Press in November or December 2014. She regularly blogs with others about writing mysteries at http://writerswhokill.blogspot.com. Her personal blog is http://littlesourcesofjoy.blogspot.com, and her website is http://paulagailbenson.com.









24 comments:

  1. Nice blog post, Paula! Nice to see your here. You are omnipresent!

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    1. Thanks, Sasscer! It's good to be here. Hope to see you soon!

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  2. Congratulations, Paula! I enjoyed your first post here and look forward to reading more!

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    1. Thanks, Susan. Wishing you all good things with Finding Sky.

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  3. Enjoyed your first post! A nice way to introduce yourself (and step into those shoes on a good step).
    Art

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    1. Thank you, Art. Speaking of lucky shoes, may I borrow yours sometime? Congratulations on the Macavity. Time to celebrate!

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  4. Paula, welcome! Your arrival means I'm not the newest newbie in the gang! Lovely post - especially for a woman who adores shoes!

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    1. Julie, I was delighted to read your first impressions post (check it out at: http://thestilettogang.blogspot.com/2014/11/first-impressions-julie-mulhern.html) and learn about your four, possibly five, books coming out in 2015. Congratulations. I think I need to borrow your lucky shoes, too!

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  5. Congrats, Paula. I love your shoe metaphors in the blog!

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    1. Thank you, Jacqueline. Shoes are almost as wonderful as purses, aren't they? There's nothing happier than a new fashion accessory!

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  6. Paula, great way to join the gang. I loved your post. Keep them coming.

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    1. Thanks, Cindy. I'm so glad you could stop by!

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  7. Congrats on being a gang member! Great post on the shoes.

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    1. Thanks, Kaye! I'm wearing my director shoes again this year and missing having your music as part of the production.

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  8. I'm kind of into shoes lately too Paula - Welcome to the Stiletto Gang.

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    1. Thanks, Lynn. I love your title: IF THE SHOE KILLS. Great image!

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  9. I enjoyed your post, Paula. So nice of you to have red shoes everywhere - I'm very drawn to red anything! Anyway, I'm sure you'll fit "write" in with all these other fine folks.

    Best wishes, Maggie

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    1. Thank you, Maggie. I love red, too. I'm excited by this opportunity and looking forward to seeing you in Alabama in February. Let's wear red for the Tide!

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  10. Interesting post, Paula. I read and interviewed Evelyn David (loved the dog!) But Paula--sandals, think beach sandals. Shoes do tell. Sometimes, the lack of shoes also tells. May you have days of freedom without shoes!

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    1. Elaine, I knew I should have talked with you before posting. How could I forget my favorite beach wear. Must mean I'm due a visit soon! Thanks!

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  11. Nice first blog for this group!

    I have to admit my most memorable shoes have been steel-toed work boots, required along with a hard hat & heavy gloves, for some of the jobs I've held.

    And I can't forget the motorcycle boots that protected my ankles from the hot exhaust pipe on ill-advised weekend runs.

    Somehow I missed having a dress shoe phase.

    Kathleen Rockwood

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    1. My goodness, Kathleen, I want to read your shoe blog now. What a diversity of footwear. Wow. Thanks for stopping by. Hope your dress shoe phase is close at hand.

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  12. Great post, Paula. Especially loved the bit about memorizing your mother's footsteps.

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    1. Thanks, DV. Hearing her steps let me know that we'd be going home soon. It sounds corny, but her steps became much anticipated!

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