Monday, April 21, 2014

R is for Rowan Oak: A Writer's Road Trip Series

     The Writer's Road Trip Series is brought to you by the Blogging from A-to-Z April Challenge. This month I'm blogging daily about ideal places for an afternoon, weekend or longer stay to focus on your writing. Need a retreat to finish that manuscript? Or maybe a virtual trip to inspire a scene? Take a minute, read, imagine. And thanks for stopping by!
     As Southern writers go, William Faulkner rates as one of my favorites. Aside from winning a Nobel Prize for Literature, he was also an outdoorsman, a horse lover, and he did plot outlines on his walls! When we visited his home, Rowan Oak, in Oxford, MS,  a year ago December, I was shocked at this. It was nothing new, writers making notations on the surfaces in their homes (I'd also seen Louisa May Alcott's writings near her bedroom windows). But Faulkner's were done on such a grand scale, covering two walls in graphite and red grease pencil (I believe it was The Fable that he was plotting).
      The town itself is home to the University of Mississippi. Its town square is charming, with plenty of local shopping and restaurants to choose from. Oxford also has not only one independent bookstore, but THREE! My favorite was the children's bookstore, Square Books Junior. They had many books by regional authors, on display and signed (that is why I love independents!). So of course, I had to help support the local bookstore. 
Part of his plot outline for The Fable



7 comments:

  1. I wonder if he did that for every novel and then painted over them when it was done and started again??? I would love to see that...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hey you... found you through Robin up there... so it's her fault... ;o)

    Oxford is just a stone's throw from where I live... It is beautiful...as you say, and I have visited Faulkner's grave site. During his Life, Faulkner wasn't so celebrated... he was referred to by the locals as 'Count No-Count'...

    I do love Square Books...

    Central Illinois? Where, if I may ask?? Mom was from Mascoutah, and Dad was from Carmi... one in the Southwest part of the state... the other in the southeast...

    ~shoes~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know where Mascoutah is; I needed to look at a map for Carmi. We're near Bloomington.
      Interesting about Faulkner. I wasn't familiar with his personal life until we visited Oxford. What a beautiful place that was...

      Delete
    2. Thank you for the wonderful comment... I replied there...

      Carmi is East/SouthEast of Mascoutah... in the Southern part of the State... not far from New Harmony, IN...

      Speaking of 'working on walls.' are you familiar with Walter Anderson, a Mississippi artist? He was somewhat of a... hmmm... the term escapes me... so, goofball will have to do... Oh.. eccentric.... he had one room at his house where no one was permitted in... and no one saw the inside of that room until he died...

      He had these wonderful murals painted all over the room... I wrote about it here... I don't know how to post a link...

      http://redshoeschronicles.blogspot.com/2010/11/arty-stuff.html

      All in all, I like creative people... we are somewhat unpredictable, but make the world more interesting... ;o)

      ~shoes~

      Delete
  3. The ultimate luxury would be such a writer's retreat and traveling to these places (a long distance for me). Faulkner had such a unique style, but I don't think I could stomach writing on the walls. Too much work to repaint....but apparently it was the writer's fashion back then. Shells–Tales–Sails
    Shells–Tales–Sails

    ReplyDelete
  4. Beautiful home. And how cool that his notes are preserved on the wall for all to see! I doubt many writers have left that type of legacy behind.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...