Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Oh The Places You'll Go

Inspiration unfortunately isn't tangible, it floats in and out of my head like the wind. I wish I could call upon it at will. Sometimes it comes at night in between dreams, when I'm too tired to write it down. Sometimes it just turns on in my brain like a light bulb.

Part of the inspiration to write my current project came from my Dad's interest in the Civil War. When I was little he would bring my older brothers to battlefields for vacation and we would all tag along (I have 7 siblings). We also visited my cousin who lived in a antebellum home in Georgia. We traveled in an RV ( so much material there). I fell in love with the time period and the South. I didn't realize then what an impact these trips would have on me.

The romantic in me was also inspired from a laptop-sized writing desk that's been in my Dad's side of the family since the Civil War. In the desk is a letter my great-great grandfather wrote to his wife while he was away at war. These people that lived so long ago fascinated me. It's a shame my Dad didn't live to know I was inspired by his interests, I wonder what he would have thought of my novel writing.

All of these thoughts were in the back of my head until the idea to write a novel came to the surface. I have to acknowledge the kids I worked with at school for actually making me want to write. They inspired my creativity. It was amusing to see their different personalities and watching the little ones faces as they were read a story. I posted one of the murals I painted for those kids. Dr. Seuss will always be an inspiration for me. If I could have an ounce of his originality, I'd be content.


  1. Did you paint that mural in your kids play room?

  2. Wow! The mural is spectacular.

    I'm sure your father would be thrilled you are writing a novel inspired by your battlefield visits and family history.

  3. Wo. My Dad is a Civil War freak as well. I went to battlefields and reenactments myself. Great Seuss mural! I love it. Dr. Seuss is a great inspirational figure. He was rejected so many times by publishers. He only got published because his friend started a publishing company. We must persist!

  4. The mural was painted in the LRC of the school where I worked.

  5. who is starting the publishing company?? seriously, that is a way cool history regarding the desk! my dr. seuss analogy for you: you are like horton--and all these little voices are calling to you. Characters that no one else can hear or see until you find a way to make them heard, going above and beyond to sustain these voices and enduring discomfort to do so!

  6. Beautiful mural Ellen!

    "The more places you'll go"

    If you don't write with your eyes shut tight.

    "So that's why I tell you to keep your eyes wide. Keep them wide open. . . at least on one side." -Dr. Seuss.

  7. Horton's always been my favorite.
    We're all going places!