Female Authors Who Made History - Celebrating International Women’s Day

Female Authors Who Made History - Celebrating International Women’s Day - Juniper Custom

Modernist writer Katherine Mansfield attended her own wedding wearing a mourning dress, and Jane Austen never married at all. Emily Dickinson was a recluse and rarely left her house. Maya Angelou preferred to write in hotel rooms. Women writers are anything but boring, both in their real lives and in their novels. Against all odds, women like Jane Austen, Louisa May Alcott, Maya Angelou, and Virginia Woolf have majorly impacted the literary world and now act as an inspiration for all modern writers. International Women’s Day simply cannot be celebrated without acknowledging all the female authors who have made history with their words. 

Jane Austen

Jane Austen published four novels in her lifetime, and two more were published after her death along with an unfinished manuscript. Her full collection includes Pride & Prejudice, Sense & Sensibility, Emma, Persuasion, Mansfield Park, Northanger Abbey, and Sanditon & Other Stories. Each of these stories are held in high regard by readers to this day, and have been adapted to countless on screen renditions. The most recent on screen adaptation came out in 2022, when Netflix remade Persuasion starring the witty Dakota Johnson, who often broke the fourth wall by looking directly at the camera. We think Jane would have enjoyed her sense of humor.


Jane published her first novels anonymously, simply saying they were written “by a lady”. This phrase may seem mundane now, but it was an act of crucial feminism. While other female authors would publish anonymously - or even under a male pseudonym - Austen made it clear from the beginning that her books were written by a woman. She, along with other influential writers of her time, paved the way for all women to proudly stand behind their writing.

Jane Austen Juniper Custom Book Set Custom Book Jackets

Maya Angelou 

Maya Angelou was a world famous author and poet known for her unique autobiographical writing style. She has published 11 autobiographies and 17 poetry volumes along with many other creative works. Her earliest autobiography titled I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings became the first of a seven volume series detailing how love of literature can help overcome racial adversity. Along with being a historically influential female writer, Maya Angelou was a powerful civil rights activist. 


In 2016, just two years after Maya Angelo passed, a historical documentary titled Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise was released. This film starring Cicely Tyson, Oprah Winfrey, and Alfre Woodard weaves Maya Angelo’s written words with photographs and videos of her life. She is truly an inspiration to all writers and activists around the world. You can read all about how we began our collaborations with a Denver artist named Detour, ultimately leading to the creation of colorful cover designs for our Maya Angelou and Toni Morrison sets. See Behind the Design: Collaboration with Detour.

Maya Angelou Juniper Custom Book Set Custom Book Jackets

Joan Didion 

Joan Didion began her career as a journalist, and never intended to write novels. However, in 1963 Didion published her first novel, Run River, and began her path of becoming one of the most influential female writers. The National Book Foundation called her “an incisive observer of American politics and culture for more than forty-five years”. Her depictions of social unrest shed light on matters that needed to be addressed, and her writing was powerful enough to capture everyone’s attention. Didion spoke on why she started writing, and said "I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means.”

Joan Didion Juniper Custom Books Special Edition Book Jackets

We celebrate women writers everyday here at Juniper Custom, and we couldn’t be more proud to highlight these women on International Women’s Day. From our Influential Women Writers Book Set, Great American Women Writers Book Set, We Write, We Rise Book Set, and beyond. Today we extend an enormous thank you to all the women who are brave enough to write what they see, and as a result change our world for the better.