I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to illustrate this autobiographical piece by my amazingly talented friend John DeVore.
Read The Witches of the Confederacy at Medium.

I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to illustrate this autobiographical piece by my amazingly talented friend John DeVore.

Read The Witches of the Confederacy at Medium.

Mini framed mermaid art just added to my Etsy store! Can be purchased as a pair or individually.

via Etsy

Just added to my Etsy store. A small framed print based on the gorgeous 1994 movie Queen Margot.

Via Etsy

During which Charlie Chaplin has a birthday.
via Society 6

During which Charlie Chaplin has a birthday.

via Society 6

Look. I know I’m very, very behind. But I’m going to get back on track (i.e. desperately catch up on) with my Lent Project. If it kills me.
11. Ali and Nino: A Love Story by Kurban Said (AKA Essad Bey, AKA Lev Nussimbaum, etc.).
A really beautiful novel about a Muslim boy and a Christian girl who fall in love in the last days of Imperial Russia in Baku. The book first came to my attention when I read the extraordinary biography of the author, The Orientalist by Tom Reiss. Kurban Said was actually born Lev Nussimbaum, a Russian Jew, the son of a wealthy oil man in Azerbaijan. His mother was a suicide (and possibly a spy for Stalin, who also - perhaps - occupied the Nussimbaum’s house after the Revolution). He attended high school with the Nabokovs in Germany, converted to Islam (pretending to be a Persian prince). And wrote and wrote and wrote under various pseudonyms and identities.
Ali and Nino was first published in Vienna, in German, in 1937 under the name E.P. Tal Verlag, a pseudonym for a German Countess whose family still claims she is the author (really. you can’t make this stuff up.). Most people, however, believe that Said/Bey/Nussimbaum is the author, as it’s impossible to believe it was written by somebody who hasn’t spent substantial time in Baku. Bey fled to Italy when the Germans occupied Austria and died there in 1942 at the age of 37.
11/40 in my Literary Lent Series

Look. I know I’m very, very behind. But I’m going to get back on track (i.e. desperately catch up on) with my Lent Project. If it kills me.

11. Ali and Nino: A Love Story by Kurban Said (AKA Essad Bey, AKA Lev Nussimbaum, etc.).

A really beautiful novel about a Muslim boy and a Christian girl who fall in love in the last days of Imperial Russia in Baku. The book first came to my attention when I read the extraordinary biography of the author, The Orientalist by Tom Reiss. Kurban Said was actually born Lev Nussimbaum, a Russian Jew, the son of a wealthy oil man in Azerbaijan. His mother was a suicide (and possibly a spy for Stalin, who also - perhaps - occupied the Nussimbaum’s house after the Revolution). He attended high school with the Nabokovs in Germany, converted to Islam (pretending to be a Persian prince). And wrote and wrote and wrote under various pseudonyms and identities.

Ali and Nino was first published in Vienna, in German, in 1937 under the name E.P. Tal Verlag, a pseudonym for a German Countess whose family still claims she is the author (really. you can’t make this stuff up.). Most people, however, believe that Said/Bey/Nussimbaum is the author, as it’s impossible to believe it was written by somebody who hasn’t spent substantial time in Baku. Bey fled to Italy when the Germans occupied Austria and died there in 1942 at the age of 37.

11/40 in my Literary Lent Series

10. The G-String Murders by Gypsy Rose Lee. Here is an excerpt from a blog post I wrote a couple of years ago:  
"Chorus girls, burlesque dancers and aspiring starlets appear in all kinds of hard boiled crime fiction, vintage and modern, from S.S. Van Dine to Raymond Chandler to James Ellroy to Megan Abbott. They appear as shady dames, victims and comic relief, but only in The G-String Murders are they both author and heroine. I actually found it kind of thrilling. She very effectively creates a backstage world that simply no longer exists. The nuts and bolts explanations of how a burlesque house was run in the 1930s are fascinating, her dialogue is funny and gritty. It’s a plot point that she makes her own costumes (oh, the story is told in first person by a burlesque star named "Gypsy Rose Lee"), and in the 1940 New Yorker piece she shows off her thrift store finds that she will be using to make new outfits - something many a modern burlesque performer has done. It’s gritty and bawdy and charming.”
You can read the rest here.
10/40 in my Literary Lent Project.

10. The G-String Murders by Gypsy Rose Lee. Here is an excerpt from a blog post I wrote a couple of years ago:  

"Chorus girls, burlesque dancers and aspiring starlets appear in all kinds of hard boiled crime fiction, vintage and modern, from S.S. Van Dine to Raymond Chandler to James Ellroy to Megan Abbott. They appear as shady dames, victims and comic relief, but only in The G-String Murders are they both author and heroine. I actually found it kind of thrilling. She very effectively creates a backstage world that simply no longer exists. The nuts and bolts explanations of how a burlesque house was run in the 1930s are fascinating, her dialogue is funny and gritty. It’s a plot point that she makes her own costumes (oh, the story is told in first person by a burlesque star named "Gypsy Rose Lee"), and in the 1940 New Yorker piece she shows off her thrift store finds that she will be using to make new outfits - something many a modern burlesque performer has done. It’s gritty and bawdy and charming.”

You can read the rest here.

10/40 in my Literary Lent Project.

09. Kindred by Octavia Butler.
Kindred gets my vote for my favorite American novel about slavery, a category in which the competition is shockingly thin on the ground (in a facebook conversation on the subject we are basically talking about four novels: Kindred, Beloved, The Known World, Uncle Tom’s Cabin). Considering, it was the centuries long institution that is our nation’s greatest shame and the thing that influences, basically, everything.
Butler is the iciest and smartest of sci fi authors (though, truth be told, it’s not really my genre). For non-genre readers, I don’t think this book would ever be defined as “sci fi” if it had been written by somebody else. There is a time travel element, which I usually loathe, but here, it works. It gives the modern reader a devastating entry point into a brutal past.
(and I know I’m behind. I’ll be posting more later.)
9/40 in my Literary Lent Series.

09. Kindred by Octavia Butler.

Kindred gets my vote for my favorite American novel about slavery, a category in which the competition is shockingly thin on the ground (in a facebook conversation on the subject we are basically talking about four novels: Kindred, Beloved, The Known World, Uncle Tom’s Cabin). Considering, it was the centuries long institution that is our nation’s greatest shame and the thing that influences, basically, everything.

Butler is the iciest and smartest of sci fi authors (though, truth be told, it’s not really my genre). For non-genre readers, I don’t think this book would ever be defined as “sci fi” if it had been written by somebody else. There is a time travel element, which I usually loathe, but here, it works. It gives the modern reader a devastating entry point into a brutal past.

(and I know I’m behind. I’ll be posting more later.)

9/40 in my Literary Lent Series.

08. Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe
Here I will share the full title: “The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders, &c. Who was Born in Newgate, and during a Life of continu’d Variety for Threescore Years, besides her Childhood, was Twelve Year a Whore, five times a Wife (whereof once to her own Brother), Twelve Year a Thief, Eight Year a Transported Felon in Virginia, at last grew Rich, liv’d Honest, and died a Penitent. Written from her own Memorandums.”
Awesome.
8/40 in my Literary Lent Project.

08. Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe

Here I will share the full title: “The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders, &c. Who was Born in Newgate, and during a Life of continu’d Variety for Threescore Years, besides her Childhood, was Twelve Year a Whore, five times a Wife (whereof once to her own Brother), Twelve Year a Thief, Eight Year a Transported Felon in Virginia, at last grew Rich, liv’d Honest, and died a Penitent. Written from her own Memorandums.”

Awesome.

8/40 in my Literary Lent Project.

07. The Vagabond by Colette. 
Released just over a hundred years ago, he autobiographical novel of a thirtyish divorcee supporting herself in the music halls is well worth reading if you haven’t already.
7/40 in my Literary Lent Project.

07. The Vagabond by Colette.

Released just over a hundred years ago, he autobiographical novel of a thirtyish divorcee supporting herself in the music halls is well worth reading if you haven’t already.

7/40 in my Literary Lent Project.

I just added an array of Zombie Mermaid products to my Society 6 store! 

I just added an array of Zombie Mermaid products to my Society 6 store

06. Claudine At School by Colette. 
If someone was willing to pay me for it, I could probably spend my life quite happily drawing Colette fan art for the rest of my days. She’s a criminally underrated writer, much in the way Truman Capote is - someone whose gigantic persona and public life overshadowed an enormous, rare talent.
I first read the Claudine books (Claudine At School, Claudine In Paris, Claudine Married, Claudine and Annie) in high school and loved them. If you read my journals from 11th grade (you will never read my journals from 11th grade) you can see I did my embarrassing best to ape her style. Written when she was very young at the behest of her then husband Willy, who then published them under his own name, her talent already seems almost fully formed.
6/40 in my Literary Lent Series.

06. Claudine At School by Colette.

If someone was willing to pay me for it, I could probably spend my life quite happily drawing Colette fan art for the rest of my days. She’s a criminally underrated writer, much in the way Truman Capote is - someone whose gigantic persona and public life overshadowed an enormous, rare talent.

I first read the Claudine books (Claudine At School, Claudine In Paris, Claudine Married, Claudine and Annie) in high school and loved them. If you read my journals from 11th grade (you will never read my journals from 11th grade) you can see I did my embarrassing best to ape her style. Written when she was very young at the behest of her then husband Willy, who then published them under his own name, her talent already seems almost fully formed.

6/40 in my Literary Lent Series.

05. Jane Eyre (or Wide Sargasso Sea). Whichever.
BTW - has anyone else watched the most recent film version? I really, really liked it. It’s in no way as radical as the recent Wuthering Heights (which I highly recommend), but it does feel as if they threw all the other film versions away and went straight back to the book and made their own ideas about how to tell this story.
5/40 in my Literary Lent Series.

05. Jane Eyre (or Wide Sargasso Sea). Whichever.

BTW - has anyone else watched the most recent film version? I really, really liked it. It’s in no way as radical as the recent Wuthering Heights (which I highly recommend), but it does feel as if they threw all the other film versions away and went straight back to the book and made their own ideas about how to tell this story.

5/40 in my Literary Lent Series.

cavigliascabinet:

More pages from my sketchbook. Two winged girls.

I added both of these original drawings to me Etsy page. Lots more to come!

cavigliascabinet:

This would have been the greatest sister act of all time!

I just posted this to society 6!

cavigliascabinet:

This would have been the greatest sister act of all time!

I just posted this to society 6!

This would have been the greatest sister act of all time!

This would have been the greatest sister act of all time!