Once Upon a Time, I was studying for a test on English literature. All of English literature. I started thinking about the scope of material I could be tested on versus the number of books and authors I had actually read. Having a four-year degree in English does not mean that you have read every single significant work by every well-known author.
I took a class on Chaucer instead of Milton. I have read the majority of Nabokov’s books, but I have never read a full-length Hemingway or Faulkner novel. So, I decided to fill in the gaps in my literary knowledge. I used Norton and other anthologies to cobble together a list of important plays, poems and novels that I hadn’t yet read and started in on them.
I found reading the canon in chronological order incredibly satisfying. I learned so much about the evolution of literature, especially the novel. Often, authors write books in response to another writer. For example, Tom Jones is a reaction to Clarissa. A host of writers wrote responses to Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Reading in order helps me understand these reactions. Also, I have a better understanding of why an innovative book is innovative. I frequently tell my friends “a character in literature has never done this before!”
Actually, there weren’t enough interested ears to receive all my thoughts about the books I was reading. So, I decided to start this blog. I just jot down my thoughts on each book I read. This way I won’t forget anything. I needed pictures for each post to make them more interesting and pics of book covers are dull. Just goofing around one day, I tried to make myself look like a bloodless Pilgrim—absent of all worldly desire—for the Pilgrim’s Progress post. Since then I have been dressing as the characters for every book.
Making this blog is absolutely my favorite thing to do. Reading and writing about these books is intellectually satisfying. Coming up with outfits engages my creativity. Getting my friends involved in the photo shoots is fun and gives us something silly and productive to do with our time.
Thanks to everyone who has taken a picture, been in a picture, read the blog, commented on the blog or listened to my incessant literary prattle. Also, costuming gets pretty expensive. So, send me all your old Halloween costumes or that LARP outfit that you never wear anymore, because you made a better one.
Oh, I’m 31. I live in Bangor, Maine.
I’m writing a bachelor’s thesis on Literary Tourism, in particular focusing on children’s books. As part of my research I am interviewing amatuer bloggers and tourists who have visited locations where popular children’s books were written or set. I found your post about Anne of Green gables and enjoyed it very much.
Please, if you would not mind and could find the time to do so, would you be willing to let me interview you about your feelings toward Anne, L.M. Montgomery, and all the attractions dedicated to them that you have been to?
I apologize for asking this of you in a comment, but I sorry to say I could not find a way to contact you directly. I hope this is okay with you.
Please, let me know as soon as you can.
Thank you very much, I appreciate it greatly.
Thanks, Jennifer. I’d be happy to help. I sent you an e-mail.
I liked your kitty, s/he looks just like our Aragorn!
Thanks. He’s a sweetie, if somewhat crazy.
HI! Just found your blog, and I love it. May I ask what you do for a living?
Thank you. Sorry it took me so long to respond to this. I just started a new job as a reading teacher. I am so glad you like the blog!
these are great fun to read and interesting too ! 🙂
Thank you. I’m glad you enjoy them.
Sydney! I sent you a blurb about our next trip via your mom. Did you get it?
I have not received it. I’ll ask her about it. Thanks for letting me know!
Just send me an email if you wish.
Stumbled over your blog via Instagram. So, so good. I faved it on Bloglovin and will indulge more this weekend.
Thank you so much! I followed you on instagram and your knitting is so beautiful! It looks like we love the same colors: blue, green, gray and any combination of those three. Thanks for reading!
Just wanted to drop you a line and say how much I loved your concept. I’m a PhD student at Florida State and glad that someone understands how much magic there is out there among the stacks and pages. My best to you always.
Thank you so much! I really appreciate it. My grandmother used to teach at FSU. I love Tallahassee. Best wishes.
Tuning in years late. Enjoying your blog, grew up near Bangor.
Thank you so much!
Hi Sydney! I just found your blog as I was researching Franny Fern. I am from South Texas and I just want to let you know I am loving your blog.
Thank you so much! That means a lot.