Posts with the category ‘Nora’s Story’


What’s in a Book Title?

While promoting my novel Searching for Nora last week, I got an interesting question: how did I come up with the title? Ah, the title. It seems like that should be the easiest part of the book to write. In the movie version of a writer’s life, you see the author slip a piece of paper into a typewriter, roll it into place and, click clack, type in the title. Then they start writing. Or, if they are going to be ambushed by writer’s block, they stop after the title. The title should be obvious. The title should be easy…. 


Creating the “Nora’s Journey” Photo Essay

While I was writing Searching for Nora, I often ran the story through my head like a movie, tinkering with scenes and enjoying the extended dream of the novel. When my husband and I talked about the book, he liked to imagine which actress would play Nora in the movie version, or where it might be shot. The entire time I worked on the book, Nora’s and Solvi’s worlds lived in my head, images at every turn. But when you write, you have to rely on words to convey the rich texture of the world you see in your mind’s… 


Who Is Solvi Lange?

My new novel, Searching for Nora, braids together two tales. The primary story is set in Norway and Minnesota in the 1880’s, and traces what happens to Nora Helmer, the heroine of Henrik Ibsen’s iconic play A Doll’s House. The secondary story is set in Norway as well, but in 1919, and features a young university student named Solvi Lange. She’s a lonely girl with a rebellious spirit and a fierce yen for the truth. She sprang to life so I could view Nora through the prism of time and turn-of-the-century social change. Solvi and her friend Rikka are some… 


Finding Nora in Norway

What does Nora Helmer look like? If you’ve seen Henrik Ibsen’s play A Doll’s House, you may have an image in mind. But what was Ibsen’s vision of her? He tells us through Nora’s own words, and how men respond to her. She jokes about her “ravishing appeal” and uses her beauty to get what she wants. She’s clearly very attractive, vivacious and dynamic. She’s a woman men notice and women envy. To develop Nora’s character in my novel, however, I needed concrete details. While researching in Norway, I looked for a woman who could serve as a model, because…


Why Write About Nora Helmer?

Photo of the door of an historic apartment in Oslo, like the one Nora Helmer slammed at the end of Ibsen play A Doll's House.

I wrote Searching for Nora because I couldn’t stop wondering what Nora Helmer – heroine of Henrik Ibsen’s play A Doll’s House – might have done after slamming the door on her family and bourgeois life. Would she set up house-keeping in a garret and send for her children? Flee to Denmark to become a bohemian and pose for painters? Or walk to the harbor and buy a ticket to America?


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