Marta Pelrine-Bacon writes modern fairy tales and makes art from the printed pages of those tales.
Where Marta grew up - on a long stretch of road in central Florida - her father told her a witch lived in the abandoned house under a cluster of punk trees, and moss and hot air balloons carried Santa's elves overhead. Their own house faced a lake big enough for an island in the middle where blackbirds settled for the sunset. For her, Florida was a perfect place to develop an interest in sharp objects and shadowy places. She says that is why she writes stories with odd twists, turns and edges.
She was born in the Sunshine State. Her maternal grandmother moved there in the 1920s. Her father moved there in 1959. That's hardly any history at all. Except in Florida, that's a lot! But she left home at 17 to study English and writing in Indiana, and she followed that with her Master's Degree from Kent State University. To see something else of the world, she joined the Peace Corps and taught English in Bulgaria for two years. One way or another, she has always written and made art.
According to Marta, she writes because stories well up in her brain. She would go mad if she didn't let them out. While her past inspires her stories, her stories are not her past, and she is not her characters. Characters come to her in images, and she writes to discover why they are doing what they do.
If you take a look at her art, all the words in the pictures you see are from her novels and stories. The images are not representational of the writing but are images she likes and finds compelling, and perhaps the images capture the mood of the words.
The author/artist also works with other people's words. She created a CD cover and insert art for John Zainea and the Mania's album, Summer of One-Thousand Seeds, using the lyrics and notes. She has also used favorite poems or words in other made-to-order pieces and pieces for fundraisers. Her work has been shown three times over three years at Genuine Joe's Coffee House in Austin and two years at Art City Austin. It has appeared in Onomatopoeia Mazagine and has been featured over at 7 Impossible Things Before Breakfast. She also worked as an illustrated for Plum Tree Books/UK.
NPR's series "In Character" selected a short piece on her love of Dorothy Gale, and a fairy tale she wrote appeared in the May 2011 issue of Scheherezade's Bequest. One of her flash fiction pieces appeared in the online journal 50 to 1 and in Flash Fiction Magazine. Another short story appeared in The Austin Review. She is working on another novel.
Art, Marta believes, can be made anywhere by anyone. Make something. She also believes in writing whether or not anyone is reading. But if you are reading, she thanks you!