Alphabet of Inspiring Women

Ciao lovelies, if you read my last post: International Women's Day, you know that I've been kind of absent from this blog, purely because I've been busy with work and unable to think of creative blog ideas. That being said, this post is a creative sort and was inspired by the lovely Eilidh. She posted her A-Z (ish) of Inspiring Women and it started me thinking about all of the women that have inspired me throughout my life. I've decided to try and create my own ABC of inspirational women. Obviously, this is a challenge for me because the moment I try to think of something, like inspiring women, my mind goes blank. But, this post is the perfect follow up to my previous one. So, without further ado let's get on with my alphabet of inspiring women.

Amanda Abbington
Anybody that knows me vaguely well, knows that I love Sherlock and it's cast. Before the show, I didn't really know much about Amanda Abbington but in recent years she's become a staple in my life through her twitter feed. Amanda is a beautiful woman that is not afraid to stand up for what she believes in. She is fierce and kind and such an inspiration to me and so many other people. When I was down, she replied to a tweet of mine and it honestly helped me more than I can express in words. To have interacted with her just a little bit makes me incredibly happy and if I'm even a little bit like her, then I know that I'm going to be ok.

Louise Brealey
Another one of the beautiful Sherlock cast. Louise's character in Sherlock is not my favourite (that's an understatement) but Louise herself is an absolute sweetheart. She is a fun and caring individual with so much to say about the world. Following her on twitter is something special and her #dogbothering pictures always make me smile.

Cassandra Claire 
There was a moment between child and teenage fiction when I was lost, I had no idea what to read. But a chance discovery of City of Bones in a bookshop while on holiday with my grandparents pointed me in the right direction. I finished it over the weekend and had my Nan purchase me the following two novels. I'm not sure if it was the supernatural element that captured my attention or the humour but the novel's protagonist was certainly part of it. Clarissa is just your average fourteen years old who is suddenly plunged into the dangerous world of demons, of which she knows nothing and her journey of self-discovery is something beautiful. Also, there are some amazing female characters in this series that are worthy of your attention.

Princess Diana of Themyscira, Daughter of Hippolyta. (Wonderwoman)
This one is self-explanatory, right? Diana is a princess that spends the beginning of her life sheltered from any possible danger before taking her destiny into her own hands and learning how to fight which leads to the biggest decision of her life. This film holds a big place in my heart because of the amazing female characters delivered to us by a female director. It's an incredible watch and seeing a superhero like her is honestly the most satisfying thing. The question she asks before leaving Themyscira always gets me thinking,"if I stay, who will I be?"

Emma Watson
I think this one is pretty much self-explanatory, right? Emma Watson is a shining beacon for feminism, she's a beautiful human being. She fights for important issues, such as education for girls, and the HeForShe campaign. Also, her book recommendations on Instagram are everything.

Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga is more than just the "queen of pop". She uses her platform to advocate others rights, through her music, the born this way foundation and her advocacy for LGBT+. She puts everything into her beliefs and performances and there is nobody quite like her, I love her with every fibre of my being and some time in the future, I hope to have the chance to see her perform live.

Audrey Hepburn 
"The most important thing is to enjoy your life - to be happy - it's all that matters." Audrey Hepburn has become a cultural icon for her beauty and grace during her time as an actress and model but she was so much more than that. She became a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF and spent years travelling around the world helping children while using the media to raise awareness for them also. She wanted a world where all children could be safe and happy and a children's fund in her name still continues to help children. From her, we can learn how to respect ourselves, others and to know how lucky we are while helping others.

Jane Austen (side note: Elizabeth Bennet)
Jane Austen wrote about women. She made issues surrounding women in the 18th century more accessible through her writing which continues to be relevant today. I often think that we can learn a lot from literature and the characters in it, particularly that of Elizabeth Bennet. As a character, she is real and as imperfect as us all. She fights the patriarchy and does not accept her situation - refusing to marry somebody despite it being expected of her. She doesn't alter her behaviour to fit in with society but is always polite in a way that is still relevant today.

Hayley Kiyoko
The lesbian Jesus of our generation. Hayley Kiyoko is a fabulous musician and confidently expresses her sexuality through her music and music videos. Her song curious is simply stunning and the video is an expression of desire through the female lesbian gaze and not that of a man. It's refreshing and different and Hayley Kiyoko is exactly the kind of musician we need today.

Amanda Lovelace
I first read her book The Princess Saves Herself in this One last year and it opened my eyes. I've always loved poetry but sometimes I forget about it - I know, I'm awful. This book is simply stunning, it's a journey of saving oneself as opposed to waiting for a knight in shining armour. I would suggest thing book to anybody that likes poetry or wants to dabble in it.

Margaret Atwood
I first read The Handmaid's Tale when I was in school and it's one of those books that you read and know that it's changed your life. I had no idea how much until now, six years later, I still remember this book vividly. The dystopian novel explores a society where women are slaves to men. Offred is a woman that belongs to one man and is there to reproduce with a member of the ruling class in a society where infertility has increased. It's a novel that raises many questions about our own society. I've only read one other Atwood novel which explores gendered and national identity - this one I read on a woman's writing module while at Uni. I've been ahcing to read more Atwood and I'm going to find the time because she truly is a wonderful author.

Emmeline Pankhurst
She did so much for women's rights that it would be a crime itself not to mention her in the post. She fought for women's rights and helped to pave the way for us all.

Queen Elizabeth 
Some of you may be rolling your eyes at this one but this post wouldn't be complete without mentioning our monarch. She served as a mechanic during world war two. I believe she is an icon purely because she has never let her gender define her.

There are a few Disney characters that I think deserve a mention. Rapunzel is young and adventurous despite her circumstances. She has a dream which she follows through sheer determination and changes her circumstances. She is a princess without knowing it, always polite and kind.

Una Stubbs
For me, the heart of any decent TV show is it's female characters. Una Stubb's plays the beautiful Mrs Hudson in Sherlock. Her role goes beyond the mere 'housekeeper' that her character had previously been allotted, she becomes something far more - a mother figure. But she is also badass. Una herself is something of a legend within film and TV. There isn't a lot that she hasn't done and honestly, she's the cutest thing in the world.

Virginia Woolf 
Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf? I was. I'd never attempted to read one of her novels until I was at University and had a upcoming lecture on her. Honestly, I didn't finish the the first one I attempted Mrs Dalloway. This is something of a personal failure for me because the lecture was very interesting. The next year, another Woolf novel appeared on the syllabus Orlando. I persevered with this one and it was so worth it. It's quite revolutionary in my eyes, a tale of a young nobleman who lives some three hundred years before he turns, surprisingly, into a woman. It was inspired by her lover Vita. It explores and celebrates gender and sexuality within a beautiful narrative. The character if Orlando is both a man and a woman, which is what makes this novel fascinating. If you've been thinking about trying out Virginia Woolf, I would recommend starting with Orlando. It worked for me and it might for you too.

Jacqueline Wilson
I spent a large part of my childhood reading Jacqueline Wilson. Her books were something of a staple point in my life and it's not until now I'm realising how important they are. Her stories are fun, exciting and full of raw experiences. Each book has something beyond realistic like abusive parents, a girl in care, bullies and a boy struggling with his sexuality. These novels were the starting point for me and I can never thank her enough for it, without her I might not be where I am. Also, I think that it's worth mentioning her novel My Sister Jodie was the first book that made me cry.


And that's it, my almost complete alphabet of inspiring women in honour of International Women's Day. There are so many people that inspire me daily that mentioning them all would be impossible. I've really enjoyed making a list of the women that inspire me and mentioning why, I hope you enjoy this post as much as I have.

Thank you so much for visiting my blog.

Tiffani x


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