Friday, December 03, 2010
Those of you who loved the "volcano stuff" in FIRE MAIDEN, won't be surprised to know I'm fascinated by all things volcanic.
As a child,I saw photographs of people and animals (especially dogs, most horses were ridden out of town at a gallop)in Pompeii, a city buried by ash, pumice and lava and couldn't stop wondering why people stayed in the city when they knew they were in mortal danger.
If you're asking yourself how there could be photos of something that happened in A.D. 79,it's because archeologists who excavated Pompeii found tha the ash and pumice which fell on the dead HARDENED into a shell which preserved the shape of everything -- folds in togas, filigree decorating necklaces, bread and fruit arranged on plates and political posters on city walls.
Below you can see a Pompeii man with his dog.
I've been thinking about this because I've just finished reading POMPEII, by Robert Harris. The suspense in the book isn't in the ending any more than it was in TITANIC. Still, it creates a vivid picture of the city before the eruption. The main character is a water engineer, and it makes me want to write a book which takes place from a Pompeii teen's viewpoint and tries to answer my childhood question.
And that's the magic of books, I guess. We can safely put ourselves in a town on the verge of destruction and enjoy being there!
Have a good weekend, all.
Labels: FIRE MAIDEN, Pompeii, volcanoes
Permalink to this blog post
Terri Farley @ 3:45 AM
wow Ms Farley, you have a lot of good ideas for stories! =). So that really is a molten ash preserved figure of a dog and man? The man looks real but the dog looks like a clay figure.
Pompeii is a wonderful subject for a story (and Robert Harris' book is fabulous, are his other Roman novels Imperium, et. al.). I hope you get the chance to write your story--in the mean time, check out Pliny the Younger's letter on the eruption (he was a teen who stayed home and did his homework rather than investigate with his uncle) and Caroline Lawrence's series "The Roman Mysteries", particularly the second book The Secrets of Vesuvius. As a Classics student at university, lover of horses, and fan of yours, if you could combine the three in a book, I would be so excited. Good luck!
... but they didn't know it would erupt when it did, the eruption took place happened while they were sleeping (example in your picture of the sleeping man and his dog). They didn't have sisemic activity intstruments or anything back then.
Its a neat Idea for a story though!