Saturday, August 15, 2009

Maud and Me

I started ( but like most of my writing ideas abruptly abandoned) a project wherein I was determined to re-read all of LM Montgomery's novels and document the experience. This still might happen. For now, since some people still find this blog, I thought I would re-post them here.

From October 2008:

LM Montgomery has a funny way of creeping up on you. She can attune your ear to a phantom whistle you're dead certain you hear from a path nearby; she can make you believe there is magic in your backyard; make rain seem harrowing and deliciously ominous rather than dour and depressing; make you believe that you are validated by a circle of interconnected readers and imaginative spirits who share your same kindred passion for that which lies beyond the veil of sodden reality.

She makes you see a fairyland just a step beyond the borders of your complacent normalcy.

I had an idea today. What if I were to primarily read all of LM Montgomery's books in a sequence of my choice and document how they effect my mood, routine, my every-day life.

I just finished reading the Magic of Wings : an excellent new biography by Montgomery scholar, Mary Rubio. It left me with Montgomery on the brain. In this state, I could not help but reflect on years of reading and imagining. So many formative kernels of thought have been planted by my literary love-affair with the dreamiest writer of them all.

Montgomery's work fascinates me in part because it is a key to understanding a complex woman. Like any other author who seemingly steals the words from your mind and imrpints them on the page ,my connection with Montgomery is deeply rooted; our thought processes, conceptualizations of romance and books and general world view are so similar.

She is my mental and imaginative doppleganger. Her books have a profound and tantalizing power on me. And, needless to say, on millions of readers. But, do the books have the power to sway a difference in my ordinary life?

What would one's moods be like if completely absorbed in Montgomery's fairyworlds for weeks on end?

This heavily student-loan indebted, 27-year old young professional in the Educational Publishing business is about to find out.

I have a long and academic history with LM Montgomery's canon, her journals, criticism, and life. I mean to shelve this as much as possible ( it will undoubtedly creep in ) to save room for literary experience.

Many of her novels have eluded me for years. I will touch upon the favourites I read perennially, but still make room for those oft shelved in dusty corners.

My setting finds me in Toronto, Ontario where my meagre budget allots me a relatively posh basement dwelling in Forest Hill.

Misplaced, imaginative, social and a consommate dreamer, I have all of the makings of a Montgomery heroine.

Can I transpose her sense of imagination, the purple fields of love and butterflies, into my own daily existence?

What will I sound like, feel like, talk like? I will not have russet red dirt beneath my feed nor the melodic strain of a whistle spiriting a nearby boy to my side.

I'll begin, then, reading and reflecting and communicating a hodge podge of thoughts intertwining my adventures in Montgomery's lands with my own musings and my own seemingly ordinary life.

But ordinary is relative, is it not, and Montgomery has made immeasurable readers strip back the veil to find a completely revitalized world of romance and possibility beyond.

To begin Kilmeny of the Orchard (1910)projects aprubtly abandoned ---if somewhat temporarily) a blog project wherein I was determined to re-read all of LM Montgomery's fiction.

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