Tuesday, March 5, 2019

J. Albert Mann

J. Albert Mann is the author of five novels for children. She has an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts in Writing for Children and Young Adults. Her new work of historical fiction about the early life of Margaret Sanger is What Every Girl Should Know. Born in New Jersey, Mann now lives in Boston with her children, cat, and husband listed in order of affection.

From Mann's Q&A with Deborah Kalb:

Q: Why did you decide to write this novel about Margaret Sanger’s early life, and why as fiction rather than nonfiction?

A: The real reason I wrote about Margaret Sanger is that when I was in college and dating my college boyfriend, he invited me to his house. I went to Marymount in Manhattan. The house was a brownstone, with a plaque on the outside of the building.

We had a wonderful dinner, and after dinner his stepmom said, Why don’t you take Jen on a tour of the house, including the basement? We went down to the basement, and there was a strange table with stirrups. He said this was the first clinic of Margaret Sanger’s in Manhattan.

I said, Who was Margaret Sanger? I was on birth control at the time, and I was using the privilege in one of the places where she began to hand out that privilege. This was in the late ‘80s, early ‘90s.

I never forgot that moment, or her, and I do write fiction, but I never considered writing about Sanger until a few years ago when I picked up Ellen Chesler’s book [about Sanger] again.

I could never get past her childhood. It’s who she ends up becoming. There were...[read on]
Visit J. Albert Mann's website.

The Page 69 Test: What Every Girl Should Know.

Writers Read: J. Albert Mann.

--Marshal Zeringue