• Lauren Straley

Why Autumn Is The Best Season For Writers

Orange leaves bask in the sun on an early fall morning.

It happens suddenly.

You wake up to see the leaves hanging outside shifttheir light red, orange, and yellow transform your window into a nature-made stained glass. It’s lovely.

Even the air smells different, crisper notes cut through the old summer’s humid touch to leave a freshness, the anticipation of something new. The color temperature of autumn, glowing amber, rustic vermilion, lush carmine evoke a spirit of invitation and warmth.

Each season brings its own set of expected joys and changes, but autumn seems to be the most anticipated of them all. The world transforms itself into an array of warm hued forests, inviting us into their beautiful world. Writers often take full advantage of such an invitation.

Aesthetic Promise

Writers and readers are often one in the same. They complement each other and like the perfect spouse, they push the other to greatness. Autumn often gets readers jumping into their favorite sweaters, claiming a tree of their own, and nestling into the plot of a new book.

I remember a wedding I once attended in the heart of fall hugged between two lakes in Michigan. We arrived the night before to stay in a cabin with the bridal party. When dawn broke, the ladies rushed off to get themselves ready for the big day, leaving the cabin empty. I rose early, when the sun still yawned the sleep from its rays.

I took the old quilt from my room and went into the kitchen to find some coffee. Accompanied by my warm cup of hazelnut coffee and a collection of short stories, I walked out the screen door onto the veranda. A porch swing sat at the far side and I cuddled up there. The sun bounced off the lake, the trees swayed to the beat the wind gave them, and colorful leaves rolled all around me. It was perfect.

Two Roads Diverge In A Yellow Wood…

Poets are known to love fall. They capture its beauty in a way that differs from other seasons. Many famous writers throughout time have penned their thoughts on this lovely season. I would like to share some of those sentiments with you today.

“Autumnthat season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some line of feeling.” Persuasion, Jane Austen

“Is this not a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I lovethat makes life and nature harmonize. My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking successive autumns.” A Letter to Miss Lewis Oct. 1 1841. George Eliot

“No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face.” John Donne

“I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.” Henry David Thoreau

Many writers have committed their love of this season to the page, but these are a few that resonate with me. It is interesting that a season can evoke such harmony among people and nature. So often in the world we seek quiet moments, ones that allow us to feel the earth inhale and exhale, ones that bring peace. Autumn brings that quiet, resurrects that peace, and in it creativity flourishes.

Autumn Pond

Season of Change

Autumn holds a special place in my heart and I know that sentiment is shared by many. In terms of length, fall is one of the shortest seasons. Its fleeting nature makes it more desirable in some ways. We long for it, we relish in it, and we miss it when it leaves us. Unlike the persistence of winter and the clinging of summer, fall offers us an ephemeral alternative. We take it, and use it to the fullest.

Autumn is also the season for readers. Each month is associated with a particular literary-themed activity: October is National Book Month and November is National Novel Writing Month. Publishing houses boom in the fall releasing their new titles and urging anxious readers to dive into the new lists. Many renowned and anticipated authors wish for their books to be published in the fall to capitalize on the holiday market, making it a haven for book lovers. Autumn is also the time when many writers will make visits to bookstores for signings and readings.

The publishing industry itself is even aware of the love readers have for new books as the leaves begin to change, the light begins to fade, and the chill sets in. The heart of fall is dedicated to both writers and readers. The autumn season, therefore, provides readers and writers alike with many excuses to amp up their favorite habits.

Fall is the season for connection. What do books do better than connect? Whether it is people or ideas, the power of the relationship between the author, their book, and their reader is based on a foundation of community. Fall amplifies this community for us.

Take a step outside and look at the world around you. It is a beautiful time, an ephemeral time so grab a new book and enjoy the gift autumn brings while it lasts.

Fall Essentials

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