Eudora Welty

10 Evocative Writers of Place

Today is famed Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez’s 84th birthday. Known for his importance in developing the genre of magical realism as well as his lush descriptions of an often only slightly shifted Colombia, Márquez has created some of the most beautiful worlds of any writer living today. In the introduction to the Everyman’s Library edition of One Hundred Years of Solitude, author Carlos Fuentes writes, “[Márquez] creates a place. A mythical locale: Macondo. García Márquez, story-teller, knows that presence dissolves without a place (a base of resistance) that can be all places: a place that will hold everyone, that will hold all of us: the seat of time, she enshrinement of all times, the meeting ground of memory and desire, a common present where everything can begin again: a temple, a book.”

Indeed, place can be one of the most important ingredients in a novel or story, and since we associate Márquez so deeply with the Colombia he has created for us, we decided to take a look at more authors who are tied to a specific place, and whose work relies on a strong evocation of that land, whether foreign or domestic. Click through to take a look at our ten favorite writers of place, and let us know if we’ve missed your favorite in the comments. … Read More

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Weird Writing Habits of Famous Authors

[Editor’s note: While your Flavorwire editors take a much-needed holiday break, we’ll spend the next two weekends revisiting some of our most popular features of the year. This post was originally published July 13, 2011.] It’s an old topic but it always manages to be interesting — what did the authors we love do in order to write what they did? Beyond the jobs they held, what habits did they have that made writing possible? We take a look at 10 modern authors who had unusual approaches to writing; some due to the limits they would impose on themselves, others due to what they would wear or how they would attempt to channel greatness. Regardless of their methods, they have all produced work of lasting value. We might learn a thing or two from them if we’re willing to get out of our comfort zone and see the craft as just that — a skill to be exercised, not a bolt of ideas that comes if you wait long enough. So read on, dear readers, and tell us in the comments section who we missed. … Read More

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A Peek Inside the Libraries of Famous Writers

There’s nothing like a well-stocked library to enhance a home. Especially when that library has been outfitted with books chosen by some of the choosiest readers of all — the authors themselves. We recently caught a peek at the literary collections of a few contemporary novelists in Leah Price’s excellent and newly released Unpacking My Library: Writers and Their Books, but we admit that our library-lust wasn’t quite sated, and we had to go hunting for more. We’ve already shown you a choice selection of the libraries of the rich and famous, but here, inspired by Price’s book, we’re focusing on the libraries, studies, and carefully organized bookshelves of the authors themselves. Click through to see a few snapshots of the libraries of famous authors, and let us know which ones inspire you to curl up and read in the comments. … Read More

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The Literary Baby Name Dictionary

The world of celebrity baby-naming is an odd and occasionally alarming one. But we have to say, the latest trend is one we can get down with: Both Neil Patrick Harris and the Beckhams named their baby daughters Harper, after the author of To Kill a Mockingbird. And it got us thinking about other literature-inspired names that might be sweeping the ranks soon. Maybe Eudora will make a comeback in homage to Miss Welty? Perhaps Huck will sweep the naming registers? After all, the current number one names — Isabella and Jacob — have the Twilight series to thank. Below, our abridged list of literary baby names and what they mean. … Read More

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Children’s Books by Famous Authors of Adult Literature

Can authors write for both kids and adults? The Guardian doesn’t seem to think so, but with this list we beg to differ. Sure, there’s some crossover in genre — as we all know, a lot of adults love Harry Potter with all the strength in their muggle bodies — but the books we’ve picked were written expressly for children, regardless of whether or not grown ups like them too, and written by authors who are primarily famous for their adult literature. You may be surprised by who has made the foray into kiddie lit — it turns out that some of the most serious authors we can think of have a warm, nougat center full of laughter and sunshine. Or something like that. Click through to see our list of children’s book written by famous “adult” authors and let us know which of your favorites we’ve missed in the comments! … Read More

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