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Word Count: 750
Joyce Carol Oates was born on June 16 1938 in Lockport New York She spent her childhood in a rural town on her parents farm However the area she lived in was hit hard by the Great Depression The few industries the area enjoyed suffered numerous closures and layoffs Farm families worked much harder to keep up small survival Oates enjoyed the normal setting of farm country and displayed a talented interest in books and writing As a child I grew up on a small farm so I did a lot of drawings of animals chickens and people At the bottom of every page I had put a strange scribble I was emulating adult handwriting though I did not actually know how to write From her earliest memory she always wanted to become an author As a child she drew pictures to tell stories later she wrote them out sometimes made written books with up to 200 pages with designing covers I identify very closely with my parents in ways I cannot satisfactorily explain The lives they lived before I was born seem somehow accessible to me Not directly of course but imaginatively In addition at age 14 her grandmother gave Joyce her first typewriter She began willfully preparing herself writing throughout school On the other hand in 1956 Joyce graduated from Williamsville Central High School There she has written for the school newspaper and was entering Syracuse University under a New York State Regents Scholarship I have forced myself to begin writing when Ive been utterly exhausted when Ive felt my soul as thin as a playing card when nothing has seemed worth enduring for another five minutes and somehow the activity of writing changes everything Oates was the first to attend college in
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