The October Glick day at the downtown Indianapolis Public Library is a celebration of our Indiana authors. I recall that when I first met Gene Glick, our major Indianapolis philanthropist, at his office off 86th Street, this titan of largely apartment building in our state and beyond expressed love of Indiana’s literary heritage. “I want to see Indiana honor its writers. We have a fine literary tradition of our own,” he said.
Thus he and wife Marilyn were able to establish fifteen or so years ago the day which brings to the library would-be authors in for workshops and allows the public to meet our emerging writers, a different group each year. These best writers, chosen by a committee for high literary quality, are honored at the gala evening dinner which concludes the day. It is the Glicks’ dream come true and a significant event for Indiana literary tradition.
This year I taught a workshop for “Publishing Your Non-fiction book.” A group of perhaps twenty-two or three people formed a circle of chairs so we could all see each other and the attendees could contribute their own ideas to each other. This is a significant group for an afternoon workshop and all were energetic and eager to share ideas and learn how they could write, then publish a book.
What a variety of interests! As we went around the circle, each would-be author spoke of her (they were all women) subject and how she had come to decide to “Go for a book!” One young woman told the story of walking in the woods and being aware of Indiana’s edible berries. It piqued her imagination and she wanted to know the scope of the edible wild plants in our forests and fields. She became a student of Hoosier flora and learned of a plethora of varieties of things to eat from the wild. And so—a book! Another told of her fascination with languages and the games they can engender and will put her theories out there. Teachers of specialized groups of children and adults had their learning theories to share in books.
One of the most interesting topics, which will certainly make a fine contribution to local history was a book by a child of the editor of the Jewish newspaper in Indiana and beyond. Although she was never interested in the paper when she was growing up, after her parents were gone, the entire world of interest in the history and success of this newspaper began to fascinate her, and she is in the midst of research which will take a while but has good promise.
Memoir writers were in the group; one octogenarian felt “compelled” to story of her southern upbringing in a town of rigid racial barriers, and how she had emerged from that early culture as a lifetime process to reject the racist underpinnings of that time in the deep south. “That story just came to me to be told. I have to do it.”
Perhaps that is the way for all of us, whether our tale is published or not, we must tell it. That is what makes writing so satisfying. We are blessed that not only did Gene and Marilyn Glick encourage writers to tell their stories with “Glick Day,” but they themselves put out their own stories, fascinating tales of hard work and high values and a deep sense of giving which made personal and civic success for this couple—and sincerely enriched our town.
By Hawthorne Senior Editor Nancy Baxter
Born To Build: The Story of the Gene B. Glick Company by Eugene Glick, 2nd edition was published by Hawthorne Publishing and is available on Amazon.com, as is Marilyn Glick’s honest and fascinating autobiography,
Once Upon a Lifetime: Marilyn’s Story also published by Hawthorne and available on Amazon.