This ongoing research and book project looks at the life and writing of Lucy Maud Montgomery in the ten years before the publication of Anne of Green Gables. During this time Montgomery made a living as a writer, publishing several hundred stories and poems in newspapers and magazines throughout Canada and the United States.
Principal researcher, Dr. Holly Pike, uses historical and literary research techniques to look at writing as a professional career for women in the 19th and early 20th centuries. In order to explore the ways that Montgomery wrote for specific markets, the research explores the cultural context of the professional writing world at the time. This includes a study of the memoirs of publishers and editors working at the time and an investigation into the content and style of the publications that Montgomery’s work is featured in. It takes into consideration the remote Canadian location that Montgomery chose to work in and also looks at how she manages her public profile as she begins to build notoriety.
Examples of this research can be found in:
“The Commodification of Health and Nature in The Blue Castle” in L.M. Montgomery’s Rainbow Valleys: The Ontario Years. MQUP, 2015.
“L.M. Montgomery and Literary Professionalism,” in One Hundred Years of Anne with an E: The Centennial Study of Anne of Green Gables, ed. Holly Blackford, Calgary, University of Calgary Press, 2009.
“Tempest in a Teapot: Domestic Service and Class Conflict in L.M. Montgomery’s Journals and Fiction,” in Storm and Dissonance: L.M. Montgomery and Conflict, ed. Jean Mitchell, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2008.