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Mary Shelley The Gothic Queen It is commonplace for famous authors to write about things that they know about and have experienced in their own lives Many of the situations and characters in Mary Shelleys works can be traced back to things that happened in and people that had an influence on her own life Shelleys writings were influenced by her parents as well as the nineteenth century into which she was born Several critical and influential people in Shelleys life had achieved fame Her mother Mary Wollstonecraft was a famous feminist writer Her father William Godwin was a famous philosopher and novelist Shelleys own husband Percey Bysshe Shelley was also a successful writer These people became her inspiration to write Through the merging of her life experiences and her inspirations Shelley formulated many of the plots characters and story lines in her novels There is a direct relationship between Mary Shelleys works and her childhood environment and close experiences with death and tragedy Like many other authors Mary Shelleys childhood years had a major effect and influence upon her literary works Mary Shelley had a very lonely and detached childhood Her childhood was hardly unhappy but she was frequently lonely and lacked a feeling of family identity Todd Dictionary of British Women Writers 605-606 The strained relationships between Mary and her family caused her to feel great loneliness Shelley detested her stepmother idolized her dead mother and sought love from her reserved and distant father Shatlock The Oxford Guide to British Women Writers 568 At the age of fifteen Shelleys father shipped her off to Scotland to ease tensions in the family Schlueter An Encyclopedia of British Women Wrtiers 568 This increased her innermost feelings of isolation and her desire for love from her father It also gave definition to many of her characters In turn Shelley made her characters suffer the horrible loneliness and isolation that she experienced herself as a
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