I can’t believe it’s been over a month since my story “The Beauty of Wynona” appeared in Lacuna. This is the longest story I’ve ever published (it’s technically a novelette), and it was one of the most fun to write, even though it has dark overtones.
This story had its roots in a variety of inspirations which all seemed to simply come together—right place, right time, I guess. These include: (1) an article on an obscure portraitist in The New York Review of Books, (2) the BBC show “Jeeves and Wooster” (with Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie) based on the stories by P. G. Wodehouse, and (3) Connie Willis’ novel “To Say Nothing of the Dog.” Now this might seem an odd collection of inspirations, but if you’ve read “The Beauty of Wynona” I think it’ll be obvious how they all influenced my story. If you haven’t read my story, hopefully this list piques your curiosity.
What strikes me as odd as I look at these inspirations, is that two of them are comedies (and very funny ones at that), whereas the story I wrote, while it has some light moments, is fairly dark. Things like his make me wonder how the mind works.