Female authors heralded on International Women's Day

Female authors heralded on International Women's Day

Inspiring books by and about women are being hailed for International Women's Day, as J K Rowling and Germaine Greer are named among 17 authors on the Guardian's Top 100 Inspirational Women list.

Female novelists are holding events to mark the occasion and authors are being celebrated today [8th March], the day the initiative reaches its centenary year.

International Women's Day is celebrated in 25 countries around the globe, celebrating the economic, political, and social achievements of women past, present, and future.

No less than 17 authors are being celebrated in the Guardian's Top 100 Inspirational Women list, from J K Rowling to Germaine Greer, Carol Ann Duffy to Margaret Atwood, as well as feminist sex researcher Shere Hite and blogger Jessica Valenti.

Events held today include writers Sophie Kinsella, Gemma Malley and Jennifer Cox hosting from Jane Austen to Lady Gaga: Finding Your Voice with sixth form girls at Ursuline High School, Wimbledon, as part of Wimbledon Bookfest.

And as part of the charity Women for Women's Join Me On The Bridge Campaign to mark the day, book lovers Rebecca Lynch and Sarah Marsh are calling on readers to leave their favourite books highlighting women characters on bridges around the world.

On her way to leave some of her favourite books on London Bridge, Lynch told The Bookseller: "The first book was left on a bridge in Saudi Arabia this morning. We have people in Sri Lanka, Ireland, Wales and England, among more taking part. We are asking people to leave a book on a bridge with a message in it explaining why the book is important to them for someone else to find, then we are asking the book finders to post on our Facebook page when and where they found the book."

Inviting authors around the globe to film a short message reflecting on the question: "100 years of women's rights – what does this mean to you?" this year, Women for Women is calling on urgent action in Afghanistan, describing the country as "one of the worst countries in the world to be a woman."