Anne Frank starts writing in her diary on her 13th birthday. She has no truly close friends to confide in, so in her diary she writes detailed letters to an imaginary girlfriend named Kitty.
“I know I can write. A few of my stories are good, my descriptions of the Secret Annex are humorous, much of my diary is vivid and alive, but… it remains to be seen whether I really have talent.”
Anne Frank’s diary is published
Otto reads in Anne’s diary that she intended to publish a book after the war about her time in the secret annexe.
Reactions to the diary
Otto received many letters after the publication of Anne’s diary.
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The last time she commits her feelings to paper is on August 1, 1944. Two years have passed and much has changed in her life. Those first few weeks after her birthday were “normal”: she went to school, worried about her report card, gossiped about her classmates… But by July 6 she has gone into hiding and is living in the Secret Annex with her parents and sister. A week later the Van Pels family arrives, and Fritz Pfeffer joins them all in November 1942.
The long letters addressed to Kitty, the name she gave to her diary, are part of Anne’s diary from the very beginning. The diary becomes even more imporant to Anne during the hiding period, because she can entrust it with her innermost thoughts. On March 16, 1944, she realizes: The nicest part is being able to write down all my thoughts and feelings, otherwise I’d absolutely suffocate.”
During the hiding period, Anne does not only write in her diary. She also writes short stories. “A few weeks ago I started writing a story, something I made up from beginning to end, and I’ve enjoyed it so much that the products of my pen are piling up.” Some of her “Tales” she reads aloud to the people in hiding.
Besides her diary and the stories, Anne also writes her “favorite quotes” in a separate notebook. If she reads a sentence in a book and it makes an impression on her, she then copies it into that notebook. She gets the idea for doing this from her father. Sometimes, she reflects further about one of these “favorite quotes” by writing about it in her diary.