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Celebrate International Women’s Day

Learn what it means to women writers around the world

Every year on March 8th, people across the globe participate in celebrations of respect and appreciation towards women for their economic, political and social achievements. We asked influential female authors to share what it means to them. Hover over their pictures to see what they had to say.

“Feminism must begin with a premise: that women are human beings. Once that is affirmed, all else follows.”

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Margaret Atwood

“The more normalized feminism becomes, the less and less young women will have to experience that self-doubt or shame about identifying as feminist.”

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Sarah Knight

“I wish when I was younger I’d been less afraid – of what people thought of me, or that I didn’t measure up.”

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Lauren Westwood

“When I feel insecure I focus on making the one person whose happiness matters most to me in the world feel okay – and that’s my own.”

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Carys Jones

“Perhaps the best #WCW is the woman you see when you look in the mirror.”

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Faith Hogan

“Feminism is also about equal rights for all people, regardless of gender, class, race, religion or sexual orientation. You can’t separate one battle for equality from another.”

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Pippa Goldschmidt

“The person you have to face each day is that woman staring at you in the mirror.”

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Lisa Jackson

“Whoever you are, you have value as a person. Your contribution to the world will be unique, because you are unique.”

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Diney Costeloe

“Calling feminism equalism removes the necessary focus on gender-based discrimination.”

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Samantha Shannon

“To young women I say: surround yourself with good friends – friends who have goals and dreams.”

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Beverly Jenkins

“We, as women, need to continue to fight for our bodies and our looks to be no one’s business but our own.”

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Nicole Trope

“I try to tell the stories that might be overlooked and feature characters who are underrepresented.”

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Sylvia Day

“My book aims to humanize refugees and build bridges of empathy. I don’t think anyone who has read the story would close their heart – or vote to close their countries’ borders.”

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Melissa Fleming

“It’s up to us to educate our children early on about unrealistic body images, social comparisons, and stereotypes.”

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Debbie Mason

“In the romance writers’ community, we’re almost all women. Honest to goodness, I’ve never had a more nurturing work environment. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

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Stacy Finz

“Savour the process—treasure each step along the path of who you are and who you’re becoming.”

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Deidre Knight

“Failure and doors closing often lead to better doors opening and even greater success.”

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Barbara Freethy

“This will sound harsh, but the media, especially in the United states, has let me down.”

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J.J. McAvoy

“Too often celebrities reduce themselves to sexual objects and the media goes into a frenzy over it which creates a never ending cycle.”

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Fern Michaels

“Listen to those whose opinions differ from yours and see if you can find a path to empathy.”

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Kathryn Atwood

“My characters are courageous, hopeful and fun to be around. Hopefully my friends and family would agree that I share these traits.”

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Bella Andre

“For those who claim they're not feminists, I simply ask them why?”

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Kelly Bowen

“The 8th March 2017 I will be in my office, in a building in London that no-one of my class and gender would have ever expected to see the inside of for most of history.”

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Jacky Colliss Harvey

N. K. Jemisin Photo

"The process of becoming an artist is about practice and not giving up, so... persist."

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N. K. Jemisin

Kate Kessler Photo

"You decide your worth, not anyone else – and you are a one of a kind."

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Kate Kessler

Melissa Lenhardt Photo

"Writing historical fiction has opened my eyes to how far we have to go."

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Melissa Lenhardt

Elly Blake Photo

"I define feminism very broadly: as the belief that women deserve equal rights and opportunities."

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Elly Blake

Min Jin Lee Photo

"A feminist believes in and fights for the full possibility of her life and her sisters."

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Min Jin Lee

Kim Robey Photo

"The negative stereotypes that young women are being subjected to are heartbreaking."

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Kim Robey

Eugenia Cheng Photo

"It's OK to define your own truth and your own values and to stick to them."

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Eugenia Cheng

KJ Howe Photo

"Don’t allow your inner critic or anyone else to dissuade you from finding your place in the world."

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KJ Howe