One of my longtime writer friends has honored me by sharing her views about creativity and imagery. Margie Miklas and I met several years ago, in person, in New York City, after having had a virtual friendship for some time. I appreciate Margie’s friendship and LOVE her creative mind, and her fabulous Italian travel imagery! (All her contact links are below so you can see more about her travels to Italy.)
Do pictures inspire your creative writing endeavors? If yes, how so?
I am very visual and enjoy photography. Sometimes in my blog I only post one photo and some musings about it, inviting others to comment with their own thoughts. In my latest book, Colors of Naples and the Amalfi Coast, which is a photo book with accompanying text, I decided to use creative writing for some of the photos and a true story or interesting details about other images. Here is one example.
The photo is a majolica tile in an ancient church in Naples. The accompanying creative writing is:
Beautiful and old, the majolica tile floor in the seventeenth-century Baroque church of St Teresa a Chiaia inspires me to wonder.
In faded hues of cornflower blue and pale yellow, with a black and white maze-like geometric border, these tiles conceal a story, one that will never be known. Yet I wonder.
I wonder, how many months, or perhaps years, of painstaking work by skilled artisans does it take to create handcrafted tiles?
I wonder, are these accomplished artisans inspired by family traditions?
I wonder, how many have families who wait for them to return home at the end of the day?
I wonder, do they ever imagine that their works of art might exist for centuries?
I wonder, how many people might walk on this tiling to worship during times of war and times of peace?
Have you always found a link between imagery and your writing?
Yes, I have found images to inspire my writing more often than not. I can feel the splendor of a cathedral or the magic of a sunset in the moment, and photograph it to keep the memory forever. I can visualize it in my mind and recall my feelings which I try to incorporate into my writing. I have often returned to the photo as I write to trigger the feelings I had when I first saw that landmark or scene. This has come in handy for my travel memoirs, but also for creative writing.
In a recent blog post, I used an image of a crumbling building in Verona, Italy, and these were my words:
In this particular image, which to me is so classically Italian, I am drawn to the wrought iron balconies which of course are adorned with flowers and green plants in flower boxes – a sure sign that someone lives here and cares for these plants in a loving way.
The crumbling facade would look like it belongs in a ghetto in some American neighborhoods; hereit seems to exude charm. If it were freshly painted, this structure would appear sterile and not belonging to this community.
The lower level seems to be a shop of some type, but I can’t tell what exactly.
What do you see here?
Do you find you have any imagery ‘triggers’ that especially move you to write &/or create?
Well, yes, I must admit that I am always drawn to the beach. The image of water, especially the ocean with its gentle rolling waves, is soothing to me and inspires me to write. Even when others are around, the sounds of the waves drown out distracting conversations. So, even though I live in Florida, twenty minutes from the Atlantic Ocean, where I do often go with a notebook and a pen, this fall, I am going to Positano on the beautiful Amalfi Coast in Italy, for the sheer purpose of writing. I am staying at the same beachfront hotel where I spent five days last summer and thought I was in Paradise. So in a few months I will find my inspiration at the sea to hopefully complete the first draft of my current work in progress, my first novel, entitled Critical Cover-Up. I may not have too much time to blog from Italy, since I will be staying focused on the manuscript, but stay tuned to see how inspired I was.
Any other thoughts on this topic you would like to share?
Thank you, Rochelle, for this opportunity. What a great idea and you always find ways to collaborate with other writers. Kudos to you and may your writing success continue to soar.
– Margie Miklas
How to find out more about MARGIE MIKLAS: