Featured Dear Literary Ladies

Should writers draw characters and plots from real life?

Dear Literary Ladies,
How much should real life supply a writer with characters and plots? Should we be looking for people to base our fictional characters on, and stories upon which to model our plots?

“I think that actual life supplies a writer with characters much less than is thought. Of course there must be a beginning to every conception, but so much change seems to take place in it at once, that almost anything comes to serve the purpose — a face of a stranger, a face in a portrait, almost a face in the fire.

And people in life hardly seem to be define enough to appear in print They are not good or bad enough or clever or stupid enough, or come or pitiful enough. They would have to be presented by means of detailed description, and would not come through in talk. I think that the reason why a person is often angered by a supposed portrait of himself, is that the author leaves in some recognizable attributes, while the conception has altered so much that the subject is justified in thinking there is no resemblance. Read More→


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