Sunday 5 March 2017

Stories of Inspiration (historical fiction writers trace their journeys from starting point to finished work) - review by Joan Lennon

Stories of Inspiration
(historical fiction writers trace their journeys
from starting point to finished work)
edited by Suzanne Fox

I've been looking forward to receiving this book (whose production was a little delayed by Hurricane Matthew) enormously.  Partly because I have a piece in it - who doesn't look forward to seeing a book they're in?  But also to read the other essays in the collection, which introduces some writers who are new to me, and some I know well.  In particular, three History Girls -

Michelle Lovric, in The Venetian Novels, writes "No matter what I think I'm going to write about, Venice always snatches the lead role in my novels."  She then takes us on an informative and entertaining walk around that most seductive of cities.  

Sue Purkiss tells us about a series of serendipitous encounters and discoveries that lead to her writing the story of Alfred and his daughter Aethelflaed in Warrior King.  

Celia Rees writes about "the deadly spores of fear and superstition" out of which Witch Child and Sorceress grew.

And I find myself being interviewed about Silver Skin by someone who seems to know me quite well.

The back story of novels and their creation is always fascinating, and I would thoroughly recommend this anthology to readers and writers of historical fiction.

(Well, I would, wouldn't I.  But it is extremely interesting!)

Stories of Inspiration is available from here and here.

Joan Lennon's website.
Joan Lennon's blog.


Sue Purkiss said...

As Joan says - well, I would say this, wouldn't I? But it really is very interesting - particularly as the writers are from all over the world, so their work, and their stories, are unfamiliar.

michelle lovric said...

THANK YOU JOAN! As you know, I was delighted to see we were side by side in this excellent book. I think the editor has done a fine piece of curating.

Unknown said...

Brilliant book - I was glued to it from beginning to end. So many different aspects - so many different emphases by contributors to their own creative process. Those entries with a Venetian perspective entranced me, particularly Michelle Lovric's '12-point list' entry (I, too, have walked beneath an open window at night (on the way to an opera in San Giovanni Evangelista) and heard a Chopin prelude float down... what heaven - and what a memory THAT was!)
The whole book has inspired me deeply; maybe this year will be the year that I finally get round to writing my own account of my own Venetian travels. (Does anyone know of any writing courses in Venice where I could hone my skills? (any excuse for another visit...))
Much gratitude to all contributors - you all did an marvellous job! (Now I want to re-read the whole thing over again)
Thanks to all!

Ann Turnbull said...

I've ordered this - looking forward to it.