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You're the Voice: Heidi on where inspiration lies

Jan 01,2013
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Hello fellow book lovers and connoisseurs! Happy New Year!

As the New Year is soon to be underway, it’s only natural that we can expect a new wave of 2013 books to once again wash up in our libraries and thrill us readers with their fresh ideas, glossy sea-swept covers, and juicy plots. But, in this blog I won’t be discussing these very exciting, young books (no insult to new or debut novels here, I just mean that they’re books that are only just starting out in the very ancient and very glorious world of literature), instead I will explore the very roots of the story realm…

File 12649I’m in Europe right now, France to be precise, and well, I was just thinking, Europe is predominantly the place for the beginnings of all great books, isn’t it?

In English class this year we touched on fairytales, analyzing their format and relating them to novels of interest in this modern age. In doing this I realised just how much the basis of each and every novel originates from your European fairytale.

Two days ago I arrived in Paris and now I’m in ‘Les Juras’ (a mountain region towards the east of France), everything is just soo beautiful and sooo rich in history. The scenery is absolutely inspiring, and I can really understand why so many of the greats, like Shakespeare for instance, based the majority of their novels/plays/poems/short stories/memoirs etc. in parts of Europe. Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is a great example of this, being set in Verona, Italy. Although it is said that William Shakespeare never ventured out of Great Britain, he very much took inspiration from the magical tales and pictures of Europe he encountered throughout his short life.

Back to France however… everything from the littered, frosty ‘autoroutes’ (highways/freeways) to the magnificently warm and inviting ‘pain au chocolats’ simply rouses your inner writer to heave a long sigh in satisfaction as life and intrigue is occurring in its own little majestic way right before you here in France.

Let me give you an example…

File 12646I’m writing this blog in a beautiful two storey home library packed to the rafters with encyclopedias, French plays, maps and what must be hundreds of old, hard cover books varying in colour and quality. The house is cozy; it’s made of stone with wooden beams holding up the structure. There is a provincial looking window fitted with white shutters, it overlooks a small grove of frostbitten trees and an expansive green paddock…

Travelling in from another room I can hear the rich sound of a grand piano: scales, then List, then some Chopin, then other jazzier pieces…

I am also composing this blog on a typewriter… haha, OK, the whole typewriter thing might have been a bit of an exaggeration, but the rest is true! I promise.

Anyway, the whole point is that, yes, being inspired by your surroundings can greatly impact the quality of your story, but, I think, like with Shakespeare, reading and listening to other peoples’ tales are the factors that will most develop your writing skills despite all the allure of the part time author/part time adventurer lifestyle. That’s what I’ve concluded anyhow.

Thank you for reading my blogs everyone! I hope I wasn’t too disagreeable!!

Have a great holiday, and I wish you all the best of luck with all your future writing and reading endeavors.



Thank you, Heidi, for sharing your world and your words as The Voice for December!
You can read Heidi's other posts here:

Jan 08,2013
anonymous's picture
I went to France last year, so I know what you mean about the sense of history you can feel. Plenty of room for inspiration looking at all those gorgeous old buildings. I'm very jealous that you're there at the moment, and hope it's not too cold for you (my French pen pal says it is about six degrees, warm for winter) Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip!
Jan 05,2013
Wow, that room looks so beautiful. I kinda find it funny to think that Willam Shakespeare took inspiration from magical fairytales, considering how depressing many of his plays are. xD Have an awesome holiday too, and all the best in the new year. ^^
Jan 03,2013
anonymous's picture
That library looks absolutely gorgeous! Sounds like a bookaholic/writer's dream :O I envy your holiday - but I also hope you continue to have a fantastic time. I've never been to Europe myself, and if I travel, I'd rather go somewhere... dangerous (because I'm a loony tune like that), but to sit and write in a serene setting - Europe sounds perfect (: It's been great having you as the Voice, may you have a wonderful year ^^

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