Wendell Berry and Youth Fiction

Back in the fall my wife made a passing comment to me. "I got this book from the library. Hannah Coulter. I think you might like it."

Little did I know.

This innocent remark has packed quite the punch. I was introduced to the world of Wendell Berry, and subsequently into Wendell Berry's fictional world of Port Williams. I haven't looked book.

If you are unfamiliar with Wendell Berry's works, he is perhaps best known for his essays on preserving true farming, community, rural living, and all things common sense. However, he is also an accomplished novelist. So much so that you could swear his fictional Port Williams, and all its residents, are real. 

Little did I know: Part 2.

In the fall, as I was reading Wendell Berry, I wrote my first book. Disconnected: The Broken Path. It is a novel for ages 10 and up, and imagines a day when the internet crashes, and people are forced to live (or survive, I should say) in the real world. 

Looking back, I see just how much my little book was influenced by Wendell Berry's works. The rural way of life. Living in a smaller, more sustainable way. Learning from the past. Disconnecting from the bright lights and hammering sounds of a dromocratic world. Having faith in God. Experiencing ruin. Understanding what it means to keep on living. 

There is a niche (and need) for Wendell Berry's writings. I wonder if there could ever be a niche (surely a need) for a youth's version? Or is there already?

His works have certainly made an impact on my own writing. 

* * *

Millette is a husband, father, educator, and author of Disconnected: The Broken Path, now available on Amazon.

For a snippet from Disconnected, and an explanation behind it, click HERE.


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