Sunday, May 09, 2021

Q&A with Mary Sharratt

From my Q&A with Mary Sharratt, author of Revelations:
How much work does your title do to take readers into the story?

My title Revelations was drawn directly from Julian of Norwich’s luminous masterpiece, Revelations of Divine Love, the first book written in English by a woman. Revelations also ties in thematically with my 2012 novel, Illuminations, about Hildegard of Bingen, another great medieval female visionary. In many ways, Revelations is a companion book to Illuminations; I wanted to have similar titles to connect the two books. Finally, the title evokes Margery Kempe’s mission to secretly carry Julian’s controversial manuscript, Revelations of Divine Love, with her on her pilgrimage through Europe and the Near East.

What's in a name?

In writing biographical fiction drawn from real historical characters, you don’t get to make up names. Margery Kempe, nee Brunham, was a real person. Julian of Norwich was also a historical figure, but more mysterious. We don’t know what her actual birthname was. As an anchoress bricked into a cell built on to the back of Saint Julian’s church in Norwich, she...[read on]
Visit Mary Sharratt's website.

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Writers Read: Mary Sharratt (June 2007).

The Page 69 Test: Revelations.

Q&A with Mary Sharratt.

--Marshal Zeringue