A blog about how paintings, photographs, and prints have helped me visualize my fiction—both Where the Light Falls and works-in-progress—with a hope that they will stimulate other writers and readers, too.
A small sample of the images that inspired me appears below. Click on these or any images in the posts to see enlargements. In the text, click on colored words to activate links.
As we sail toward a new year, I have just hit this gorgeous illumination in a medieval manuscript, Egerton 10 f 33, at the British Library. Won’t someone please tell me a story to go with it?!? Best wishes to all for an imaginative new year.
Born in 1867, artist Helen Stratton would be a near contemporary of my new heroine Mattie, who is employed in the children’s book publishing industry and would therefore know her illustrations. With no more relevance than that to my own work, I’m posting (more…)
I’ve just learned what to read tonight: “The Adventure of the Bruce-Partington Plans” by A. Conan Doyle. It ran in this December 12, 1908, edition of Colliers. And what fun—Maxfield Parrish! Surely, Mattie is a fan of Sherlock Holmes and probably of Parrish, too.
Mattie Palmer, my new heroine, is Jeanette’s younger sister. Since Where the Light Falls is set in 1878–1880 and ANONYMITY in 1908, this magazine cover comes halfway between the chronologically. It’s sort of like a Rorschach test: Would Jeanette’s art be leading her this direction? Would Mattie like it? The fact (more…)
As we enter the season of parties, parties, parties, we can either rejoice or regret that the era of the lady’s maid in the cloak closet is long past. In 1922, Emily Post could still write, “Fifteen minutes before the dinner hour, Mrs. Worldly is already standing in her drawing-room.… She knows without (more…)