Inspirational Women 

The women who inspired me to write By Laura Stroud 4th March 2020

From TV programmes, to film stars, authors and female protagonists, my life has always been filled with women who write…

International Women’s Day 2020

The 8th March marks International Women’s Day

A global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.”  

The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality. One of the many missions of the movement is to increase the prominence of female entrepreneurs and creative. Authors and writers definitely fit this bill. 

For this year’s International Women’s Day, I’m celebrating the authors, writers and fictional characters who inspired me to scribble on a page, share a story and dream big. From TV programmes, to film stars, authors and female protagonists, my life has been filled by women who write and it’s a huge part of why I write now. Spurred on by the success and joy of my female role models, I’ve been encouraged to pursue a writing career. 

The women who have motivated me to write

Jo March (Little Women – Louisa May Alcott) – “I think I shall write books and get rich and famous; that would suit me, so that is my favourite dream.” 

Her ink stained hands taught me about passion and self-belief. I’ve always been in awe of her unwavering determination to write something real. Jo March taught me that a life’s work is worth the effort, and dreams should take their place at the forefront of our lives. 

Rory Gilmore (Gilmore Girls) – “I live in two worlds; one is a world of books.”

Writer and editor for the Stars Hollow Gazette. She might just be a TV character and my make-believe best friend, but Rory Gilmore knew what she wanted, and she went out and got it. She didn’t take no for an answer. She had always dreamed of being a writer and a reporter, so she fought for it. Rory Gilmore stirred me to believe that dreams can come true (with a lot of hard work). 

Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen) – “My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.”

The love letters shared between Lizzy and Mr Darcy are pretty powerful, but it was the one-liners she delivered that I love. Not one to mince her words, Lizzy Bennett could deliver a punch in the form of a stern sentence and a strong word. Jane Austen created an outstanding character in Elizabeth Bennett, on that encouraged me to understand the impact our words can have. 

Anne Shirley (Anne of Green Gables – L.M. Montgomery) – “People laugh at me because I use big words. But if you have big ideas, you have to use big words to express them, haven’t you?”

Anne’s imagination sets my heart on fire. Her ideas are endless. She always views the world with awe. Inspired by the smallest, faintest spark of life. The character created by L.M. Montgomery stimulates me a to view the world in a new way and in turn to be creative and generate unique ideas. 

Who inspires you to write? 

Matthew Kelly says, “we become the books we read”, and I’m so grateful for all the women who’ve become a part of me. Fictional or real, they’ve all helped shape the writer I want to be and the writer I’m becoming. 

What type of writer do you want to be? What books have helped you dream bigger and write more?

Women and the Oakwood Literature Festival 

This year, the Oakwood literature festival has some amazing women writers on various panels and hosting different elements of the event. These women have taken up the call to create literature and protagonists that people can enjoy today. 

The line up includes:

Sarah Ward, Derbyshire author of crime fiction featuring DC Childs

Claire Lyons, debut novelist and eco warrior on a mission to practice what she preaches

Wendy H. Jones, author of DCI Shona McKenzie crime thrillers

Jo Jakeman, author of psychological thrillers with relatable female protagonists 

Clare Harvey, author of WWII fiction featuring strong female leads

Dawn Brookes, author of the popular Hurry up Nurse series and the Rachel Prince Mysteries

This International Women’s Day let’s support creative women and book a ticket to this wonderful event. 


Laura Stroud is a writer. Working across non-fiction through her travel and lifestyle blog, Laura is the Chief Storyteller at – storiesfromabackpack.com, where she writes for an audience of young women who want to live a life a of adventure. Supporting her readers to ‘live a life worth writing about’ through her new line of travel reflection products. 

Laura is studying a full time MA in Creative Writing at the University of Derby and is writing her first series of fiction novels based on her years of backpacking and travelling through South East Asia and Australia. 

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