Being a writer means I have to find little bits and pieces to spark inspiration within me. Sometimes, I am granted this through the tiny gestures of others, the environment around me or the world’s history. A lot of the time my inspiration is drawn from within my heart, and I relate a lot of my life experiences with the ones I encounter in story.
Lately I have found my appreciation for classical English literature a lot stronger in my mind than usual. Being a contemporary writer, I usually find myself distant from historical worlds, despite them usually being the classics that my fellow students rave about. That being said, if I could sit down and read Byron , Fiske or even Shakespeare, without having to stop and ask myself whether I am actually taking any of the words in, then I would happily do so. Unfortunately, I have an eye for modern writing: Harry Potter, Twilight (don’t cringe), The Tomorrow Series, and my current favourites from Ellen Hopkins (Impulse).
However, last year I became infatuated by Virginia Woolf, her writings and her tragic life story. After reading Mrs. Dalloway , I was shocked at how much I had been drawn to it. I found the stream-of-conciousness language, the flow and the narrative completely compelling and simply something that no other writer can do like Woolf can. Doing an assignment the other day, I had obliviously written in a similar style to her own and ended up connecting my own narrative to that of Clarissa Dalloway.
In celebration of my appreciation and respect for her writing (and other authors’), I have taken the challenge upon me to collect my thoughts and opinions of books and record them on my blog. Watch out for my upcoming posts on what’s new on my bookshelves. I promise, no more Twilight.
How ironic, though, that Virginia Woolf’s masterpiece is so embedded into my mind, that it physically affects (for the better) my own writings. I applaud her, wherever she is now, for her ability to make me want to visit her writing place, homestead and her 1920s London; most of which have been preserved (those that are property of Woolf) since the day she so tragically ended her life.
I wonder now, what exactly it was that inspired Virginia Woolf. Her writing was melancholy and nostalgic–was something in her life able to give her those words? Was that what held her so miserable?
I sit here thinking whether, in the future, someone will be sitting on their own bed (as I am), asking themselves, “What gave Cassandra McBlane inspiration?”.