For someone like me, it is a very strange habit to write in a diary. Not only that I have never written before, but it strikes me that later neither I, nor anyone else, will care for the outpouring of a thirteen year old schoolgirl. -Anne Frank
The first written voice that I ever connected with was when I read The Diary of Anne Frank when I was eleven years old. Never before had I encountered a voice that I felt was talking directly to me, explaining feelings that I had also felt but could never put into words. In many ways, the influence of her writing is still very present in my own. The conversational tone I take with the reader owes an incredible debt to her diary.
She was the first literary character I ever had a crush on and I still remember finishing the last few pages while laying on my bed and hoping against all reason and fact that the story would end differently. I still feel that way every time I listen to Neutral Milk Hotel's Holland, 1945 and it still makes me sad. I've recently incorporated those experiences into the manuscript I finished this spring, and Anne Frank is mentioned quite a bit. Today would have been her eighty fourth birthday....and though she died far too young, her spirit lives on in the words she shared with everyone.