The Author: Eager Aspirant
"In our family," said Claire, "if you cannot write an epic poem or novel, that by its originality knocks all other novels on the head, you are a despicable creature, not worth acknowledging." It was indeed a writing family: Mary Wollstonecraft, Godwin, Mary, Claire, young William all had the itch; only the second Mrs. Godwin and her elder son were without it. It is not surprising that Mary, brought up in such an atmosphere and marrying into a circle of poets, became an author.
When things were going well and her imagination was active, Mary enjoyed writing. She also enjoyed it when she could use it as a vehicle for her own emotions. She thought of herself then as an author, linked by her art to human experience. In Lionel Verney's romantic attitude toward his writing she has expressed her own:
As my authorship increased, I acquired new sympathies and pleasures. I found another and a valuable link to enchain me to my fellow-creatures; my point of sight was extended, and the inclinations and capacities of all human beings became deeply interesting to me. Kings have been called the fathers of their people. Suddenly I became as it were the father of all mankind. Posterity became my heirs.