The hardship proved to be a wellspring for Dolly's creativity, inspiring many of her most-loved tunes, including the 1971 hit "Coat Of Many Colors
." She explained in her 2020 book, Songteller
: "All of that environment and lifestyle that I was born into I've been able to use in my songwriting. Because my heart and mind are always open to every feeling. As a songwriter and as a person, I have to leave myself wide open. I suffer a lot, because I am open to so much. I hurt a lot, and when I hurt, I hurt all over. Because I can't harden my heart to protect myself. I always say that I strengthen the muscles around my heart, but I can't harden it."