Luccia Gray, author of All Hallows at Eyre Hall and mistress of the blog Rewriting Jane Eyre (http://lucciagray.com/) has nominated me for the Liebster Award. The award has German origins – the word “liebster” has several definitions: dearest, sweetest, kindest, nicest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, welcome – and it follows similar principles as a chain letter, in the sense that it should be passed forward to bloggers whom you’d like to recognize and promote. Thank you, Luccia, for the nomination!
In her blog today, Luccia is offering a free copy of her book to anyone who would like to read it. I have, and it was a great read. I hope all the Jane Eyre aficionados out there will go to her blog. Luccia has asked me to answer the following questions:
- What motivates you to blog?
I’ll be perfectly honest and admit I was told, as a writer, I should have a blog. For a year, it went nowhere; I posted only occasionally, had maybe 5 followers, and couldn’t see the purpose of it. Then I enrolled in the A-Z Challenge, had a good time doing my first every-day blogs on odors. Few more followers. I started following a bunch of bloggers and suddenly I discovered I was enjoying reading others’ blogs more than mine. A short story by Kate Loveton and a cup of coffee is a wonderful break; pictures and memoir from Australia by Irene Waters, history and pictures from Luccia Gray; a book review by Rosie Amber. Plus I’ve gotten a lot of support, some reviews of my book, and met an amazing group of women.
- A post you’d like us to reread.
I re-posted it last week. It’s one I wrote on friendship, which my blogging sisters remind me about every day.
3. What do you feel strongly enough to discuss for hours?
Politics. But it will never be part of my blog. It’s currently too divisive a topic. Alexander de Toqueville, a French politician and historian best known for his two volumes, Democracy in America, and who traveled widely in our young country after 1831, wrote that politics was the one topic about which each American he met was passionate!
- Write the first line of a novel:
When the Jeep was finally tugged and pushed from the gripping goo of the mud flat, an arm, fingers pointing to the overcast sky, emerged from the muck.
And yes, I’ll probably use this!
- Write the last line of a poem:
They arrived, wondering and weary, with dreams in their pockets and the clothes on their back.
It would be dedicated to my grandmother, who came through Ellis Island in 1885, and my father’s ancestors, who apparently came to Maine from Ireland during the Potato Famine.
- Where would you live if you could live anywhere?
While I have found many places that stir my soul and fill my heart – Maine, San Francisco, Boston, Prague, London, Hawaii, the Bahamas – I think I’d live right here in Chapel Hill. My roots run deep in the clay soil, and it’s where my family grew up around me. Plus it’s relatively close to both the Crystal Coast and the Appalachian Mountains!
- Which book(s) would you take with you to a desert island?
How big could the suitcase be? It would have to be books that I’ve never grown tired of re-reading: The Ring Trilogy by Tolkien, Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett, the plays of William Shakespeare, the poems of Robert Frost, and yes, the Bible. It never fails to amaze.
- What historical person would you like to have lunch with?
Since I am an anatomist, hands down, Leonardo da Vinci. Not only an extraordinary mind, a painter extraordinaire, and a mechanical engineer of the future, but the first real anatomist. Although artists earlier than he had dissected human bodies, he was the first to do perfect anatomical drawings of much of what he observed. He also annotated his drawings, did them from several perspectives, and in some was brave enough to discount the anatomical knowledge of Galen (130-200 AD). Galen’s anatomy, incorrect in so many aspects, was still being cited as late as the 18th century by members of the London College of Surgeons. If he had succeeded in publishing an anatomical atlas, he, rather than Vesalius, would be the father of modern anatomy.
- Which book would you have liked to write?
That’s a tough one. I think Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath. Steinbeck is not only a powerful writer, but the subject of the book – the Great Depression and the Dustbowl migrants from Oklahoma – has always fascinated me. The characters are magnificent and Steinbeck is unflinching in his depiction of tragedy, but also of the incredible strength of the human spirit.
10. What is the next book you are planning to read?
Good grief, there are so many on my TBR list! Probably The Goldfinch, since I’ve read so many positive and negative comments about it from reviewers. I want to make my own decision.
Here are the fellow bloggers I am nominating in turn, because I am never bored by what they write.
Trisha Sugarek, Writer at Play, http://www.writeratplay.com/
Tara Ford, Tara Ford-Author, http://taraford.weebly.com/
Stephenie Forgue Houghtlin, http://stephenyhoughtlin.com/
Irene Waters, Reflections and Nightmares, http://irenewaters19.com/
Bob Byrd, Birdwords’ Blog, http://byrdwords.wordpress.com/
Here are the five questions I would like to them to answer:
1. What is the goal of your blog?
2. Do you have other creative outlets besides writing?
3. How and from where do you get your inspiration to write?
4. If you could be any well-known, published author, who would that be and why?
5. What is the one story, or artistic endeavor, that you yearn to complete but have yet to do so?
Thanks again, Luccia!