I just finished reading The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver which as you know takes place in Africa. Afterwards I was feeling really inspired by the way she writes about stuff that matters. I decided I, too, will become an inspirational and politically aware novelist. I spent some time considering the phrase “political unrest” and how inadequate it is to describe what actually goes on during a time of political unrest. Later, after I had written my two socially conscious books, I wove this profound thought into my acceptance speech at the award ceremony where I received my third Human Rights Awareness award. They created this award pretty much just for me. Also in the speech I made sure to mention how I owe it all to Barbara Kingsolver and her book The Poisonwood Bible. When she saw my speech on national television, watching from the den in her spacious home in Arizona, she wrote me a heartfelt letter saying how much it meant to her to know that she had affected the life of another, and that in this way the chain of good works would be continued. Until she heard my speech, she just didn’t know whether anyone was listening to her. But I was. And man, that audience sure loved my speech. Especially the part where I cried, for all the children.