6 fun facts to know about Amanda Gorman before you pre-order her new books from the Bookworm of Edwards
Amanda Gorman, the first ever National Youth Poet Laureate, also became the youngest inaugural poet in United States history after orally addressing the nation during President Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20.
She wrote the inaugural poem, “The Hill We Climb,” after witnessing pro-Trump rioters attempt to siege the Capitol in the final days of Donald Trump’s presidency.
The Bookworm of Edwards is offering pre-orders on three new books Gorman is publishing this year. Her collection of poems, “The Hill We Climb,” as well as a book of the poem and a children’s book “Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem” are all due to hit shelves in 2021.
Here are six things to know about Amanda Gorman before pre-ordering her titles from the Bookworm.
1. The 22-year-old Los Angeles native also wrote a poem for Harvard University President Larry Bacow’s inauguration.
Though now graduated, when Gorman was studying sociology at Harvard, she wrote a poem for Bacow’s 2018 inauguration. She spent the previous summer reading Nelson Mandela’s letters with his granddaughter, spoke at WE Day, appeared at the BET Black Girls Rock! Awards, and read her poems for Al Gore, Dick Van Dyke and Lin-Manuel Miranda.
2. She’s joined the ranks of other renowned writers who were also inaugural poets.
Some of the previous inaugural poets include Maya Angelou, who spoke at Bill Clinton’s 1993 inauguration, and Robert Frost, who spoke at John F. Kennedy’s inauguration in 1961. Angelou’s recitation was the first time a poet had spoken during the inauguration since Kennedy. President Barack Obama tapped Elizabeth Alexander and Richard Blanco in 2009 and 2013 respectively, and Gorman spoke with each of them prior to her own recitation. Angelou, Alexander and Oprah Winfrey are some of her idols.
3. She has a speech impediment that she battled all the way into college.
Writing became her way to grapple with her voice. She called it “a godsend and a lifeline” in an interview with CBS News. When she hit high school, she started doing spoken word, which really helped her overcome the obstacle. Having support from an English teacher single mother and practice pronouncing difficult “R” sounds by singing “Aaron Burr, Sir” from “Hamilton” helped seal the deal for Gorman.
4. Her plans to run for president in 2036 came long before the national spotlight.
Gorman plans to run the first year she is eligible, in 2036. But while the media attention following her inaugural poem has illuminated this aspect of her personality, she said in a 2018 interview with The Harvard Gazette that she’s already working on social media strategy and hashtags for her campaign.
5. Her achievements are already making waves on a national scale.
She’s spoken at the Obama White House as well as for Hillary Clinton, Malala Yousafzai and more. Her poems have taken her to CBS This Morning, the Library of Congress and Lincoln Center. She was chosen as the Youth Poet Laureate of Los Angeles at 16. At age 19, she became the National Youth Poet Laureate at 19 and performed at the UN’s Social Good Summit as a Youth Delegate. Dr. Jill Biden, First Lady, personally chose her for her husband’s inauguration.
6. Her taste in music, arts and culture ranges from historically-inspired to modern.
While writing, Gorman listens to the soundtracks from “The Crown,” “Hamilton” and “Lincoln.” She has an older brother, Spencer, and a twin, Gabrielle. Gabrielle is an activist and filmmaker, and the two hope to go to Disneyland for a well-deserved break once it’s safe to do so.
For more information about pre-ordering Gorman’s new books, visit bookwormofedwards.com or call the store at 970-926-7323.