Sunday, 30 September 2007
This week I went to The Foundling Museum in Coram Fields, London. http://www.foundlingmuseum.org.uk/ I went with my friend Rosemary Morris, who writes novels set in the reign of Queen Anne http://www.rosemarymorris.co.uk/ . It's great to go to a museum with another writer, because you don't bore each other when you size up every exhibit for potential use in the plot, or exclaim that you had no idea of this or you always suspected that. Writers understand why a half an hour in the bookshop features as a mandatory part of the trip, and why one might want to buy 18 postcards every time - for prompts in future writing 'afternoons' or inspiration for the new hero or the next orphan. I returned with a poster-sized version of Hogarth's 'March of the Guards to Finchley' which hangs in the museum and was presented to it by one of the patrons, the painter William Hogarth. The picture fascinated me because Finchley features in my next chapter, and I had no idea it looked like that in former times. Very salutary. By the way, The Foundling Museum runs the occasional writing course, as well as special days for children and musical evenings. I loved it.