July 13 - RiverArts Salon: How Does Research Inspire or Inform Your Fiction? With writer Jennifer N. Shannon

RiverArts Salons

A RiverArts Salon is a place to learn something new, share ideas, explore interesting topics, see and be seen, and have fun.

Tuesdays from 5 - 5:45 -- usually on Zoom, but this summer we're hitting the road to some in-person outdoor locations!

Tuesday, July 13: How does research inform or inspire your fiction writing? With Jennifer N. Shannon

Jennifer N. Shannon joined the Salon to lead a lively discussion about the role of research in fiction writing. Beginning with a short video clip featuring Toni Morrison answering a question about the inspiration for her classic novel, Beloved, which began with a 19th century newspaper clipping and Morrison's exploration of the "compulsion to nurture and protect," Jennifer shared a beautiful passage from the novel she is currently writing, and posed these questions:

  • How do you do your research, and how is it important in building your fictional world?
  • Does research give the author or writer permission to appropriate another culture?
  • Is it limiting to work under the constraints of research within fiction?

Jennifer N. Shannon has written and published three books and has had short stories and poems published in several literary magazines such as Deep SouthThe Auburn Avenue, and an essay forthcoming in North Dakota Quarterly. Three of her poems were published in the anthology, tender, a literary anthology and book of spells: evidence and Jennifer’s work is featured in the Maryland State Arts Council 2021 Virtual Exhibition titled Identity. Recently, Jennifer was awarded a fellowship from The Martha’s Vineyard Institute of Creative Writing and was selected and served as a panelist for the 2021 Maryland Heritage Awards. Visit Jennifer’s website to preview her work and follow her @writerjns on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.