The Small Press

Books Glorious Books

Weekly Writing Prompt

Our recent travels have got us thinking about travel writing… We’ve been traveling to learn more about writers, but what about writers who travel?

Write about your next journey, whether it’s trekking across Nepal, sightseeing in Rome, or simply catching the train to work - write about it. Explore the characters you meet, the things you see, and all of your surroundings.

Let us know how you go!

Daffodils

           

              


I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed—and gazed—but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils. 


- William Wordsworth

William Wordsworth & the Lake District

         image

The breathtaking nature of the Lake District offered William Wordsworth ample inspiration for his poetry, and in turn, Wordsworth, along with Beatrix Potter and the Lakes Poets, helped conserve the glorious lands that we see today.

Read More »

Charlotte Bronte, Elizabeth Gaskell & the Lake District

Though The Small Press only got so much as a peek at Briery Close, where the Bronte Sisters holidayed in the Lake District, its significance to the literary world is too great not to note.


Briery Close

Charlotte Bronte became interested in the Lake District after exchanging letters with William Wordsworth, Robert Southey and Samuel Coleridge.

Southey invited Charlotte Bronte to Briery Close, insisting that she meet the writer, Elizabeth Gaskell. The two female authors subsequently met at Briery Close, introduced to each other by the Kay-Shuttleworth family, Bronte, nervous and Gaskell, enthusiastic. In 1857, Smith, Elder & Company published The Life of Charlotte Bronte by Elizabeth Gaskell at the request of Patrick Bronte, Charlotte’s father.

The quaint setting of Briery Close and its impressive surroundings overlooking Lake Windermere, played host to the introduction of two of the most influential and well known female authors of the 19th century.

image

(View from Briery Close today, overlooking Lake Windermere)

With its dipping fells, vast and green open spaces, foreboding mountains and thousands of miles of dry stonewalls, it’s no wonder why The Lake District has played inspiration to some of the literary greats. On our journey here, we’ve discovered the estates of Beatrix Potter, sat by the lake that moved Wordsworth to write Daffodils, we’ve seen the holiday home of the Bronte Sisters and where John Ruskin lived. From Lake Windermere and Wray Castle to Near Sawrey, from Hawkeshead and Briery Close to Ullswater and Grasmere, we’ve covered a lot of ground in the last few days.

The next few posts from us will be special Lake District editions. We’ve been utterly inspired by the romantic and foreboding scenery as well as the accomplishments the authors who lived here achieved. We hope you are just as blown away and as motivated as we are.

With its dipping fells, vast and green open spaces, foreboding mountains and thousands of miles of dry stonewalls, it’s no wonder why The Lake District has played inspiration to some of the literary greats. On our journey here, we’ve discovered the estates of Beatrix Potter, sat by the lake that moved Wordsworth to write Daffodils, we’ve seen the holiday home of the Bronte Sisters and where John Ruskin lived. From Lake Windermere and Wray Castle to Near Sawrey, from Hawkeshead and Briery Close to Ullswater and Grasmere, we’ve covered a lot of ground in the last few days.

The next few posts from us will be special Lake District editions. We’ve been utterly inspired by the romantic and foreboding scenery as well as the accomplishments the authors who lived here achieved. We hope you are just as blown away and as motivated as we are.

“Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint can manage to escape the madness, melancholia, the panic and fear which is inherent in a human situation.”

– Graham Greene

“Write with the door closed. Rewrite with the door open.”

– Stephen King