I have been reading some each afternoon from A Little Better Than Plumb–The Biography of a House by Kentucky authors Henry and Janice Holt Giles. This is the story of a couple of writers who built a log house in Kentucky in the 1950s. They used logs from a number of existing log structures in the area. Janice Holt Giles insisted on having a house near the water. Her dream home became a reality after lots of looking and then building the house. The home, pictured above, is now a tourist site in Kentucky.
Janice Holt Giles was a prolific writer. I have not read her novels, but from the descriptions, I think she is a writer I would enjoy.
With winter approaching soon and with many good memories of the log house in the woods I used to have, I was quite moved by this passage:
Normally Mister G. and I can settle into November and December and January and February quite cozily. For the unfriendly outdoors there is the friendly compensation of a fire, drawn curtains, endless pots of coffee, dozens of books to be read and, for me, the best time of the year to work. It is naturally a time of hibernation that I can sink into the writing of a book, withdraw from time and man, and do it more easily than at any other time of the year. There is a long silence and a long peace and if I’m lucky enough to keep both unbroken I can do prodigious amounts of good work. (page 153)
The whole image of cold weather outside, hot coffee, a fire, and dozens of books inside sounds like the ideal life. I still dream of a home like my old log cabin or like the Giles’ log house.