"It's a crazy world or maybe it's just the view we have of it, looking through a crack in the door, never being able to see the whole room, the whole picture" (Ordinary People 183). In Judith Guest's novel, Ordinary People, she unravels the truth of a modern family, exposing every crack and secret that lies inside. Ordinary People explores the realistic struggles families' face every day while glossing each page with a distinctive style and inspiring life lessons. Judith Guest topples over every stereotype made against the typical American housewife by letting her words speak through this novel. Her success was not expected, but through her writings came something that the world can hold on to and learn from for generations to come.
Judith Guest began writing the second she was able to pick up a pencil, it was her secret passion. Guest found herself hiding her stories in sock drawers, just to make sure the only person to read her work was herself ("Judith Guest" 63). It is shocking to think that if these habits still existed, Ordinary People could still be nestled under her linens, unable to be read by the world. There would be no movie, no Academy Award, Golden Globe, Writers Guild of America Award, and Judith Guest would still be in Michigan teaching her high school students ("Judith Guest" 101). No one would know her name the way they do today.
Judith Guest is referred to as the Cinderella of literature. Many housewives dream of sitting before a typewriter and having the success Guest did, but it did not come easy. After spending time painting and attending writing seminars to improve her hobby, she came to terms with her next goal. Judith Guest states in her personal biography, "I made the decision that I was going to finish a novel, and then get some outside opinions if it was interesting to anyone other than myself" ("Judith Guest" 102).