Many have asked, and few can define her….so who is the Literary Jersey Girl?

She is sassy, intelligent, and well-read. She can speak at length on any number of topics, but she refuses to abolish her South Jersey native accent and inflection. She has opinions and thoughts, and expresses herself assertively if needed. She’s lived in other places, but New Jersey always beckons her to return to her home. She loves the beach and the Pine Barrens with equal passion, and can tell stories of The Jersey Devil and the ’62 storm…even though she’s never seen either of them. To the Literary Jersey Girl, few things compare with the smell of funnel cake on the Boardwalk, the sound of the Atlantic Ocean breaking over the jetties, the sight of acres upon acres of Garden State crops, the feel of a brand-new book, and the taste of pork roll from the diner. She’s all Jersey and proud of it.

She has a book wherever she goes, so whether she is sitting on one of South Jersey’s beaches, or stuck in traffic on the Parkway, she is reading. She can quote Shakespeare and Byron…not to mention New Jersey’s literary greats-Judy Blume, Walt Whitman, Toni Morrison, and William Carlos Williams; to name just a few. While she is endlessly loyal to other native New Jerseyans, she is smart enough to know that great things and awesome people come from other places, too.

Despite growing up in a small, rather homogenous New Jersey town, the Literary Jersey Girl is open-minded and curious. She welcomes new experiences, and enjoys meeting people. She thinks outside the box, and isn’t afraid to have new experiences. Sometimes she can be found in a local dive bar-with her book, of course-chatting with someone over a beer or two. Sometimes she can be found wandering the beach or the woods alone with her thoughts (and her ever-present reading material). She is an outgoing introvert who needs her downtime just as much as she needs intellectual stimulation from others.

In short, the Literary Jersey Girl is a paradox and a bit of an enigma. If you’ve earned her loyalty, you have a friend for life.