Why Iowa
Monday, April 25, 2011 at 6:54AM
Anne Ylvisaker in Grant Wood, Iowa, Marvin Cone, The Luck of the Buttons, Why Iowa, Why Iowa, Writing Process

When I moved away from the Midwest, I was surprised at how many people confuse Iowa with Ohio and Idaho. It’s true that the vowel-laden names sound similar to ears that don’t hear them frequently, and all three are land-locked states, so what sets Iowa apart?

Today I’ll share why I set The Luck of the Buttons in Iowa. Learn more about Iowa by checking back in the following days as several authors, artists, and others answer the question, Why Iowa?

Young Corn - Grant WoodI was living in Cedar Rapids, Iowa when I got the inspiration for The Luck of the Buttons. (Read about Tugs Button here.) But the reason for setting the fictional town of Goodhue in Iowa goes deeper than that.

Iowa has at once a wideness of space and a closeness of community that is enticing.

New Road - Grant Wood
Waiting for the Parade - Marvin ConeThe paintings of Cedar Rapids natives Grant Wood and Marvin Cone illustrate the sense of wideness and closeness of landscape and people that captivated me. I visited their work at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art as I settled my imagination into the atmosphere of Iowa, 1929. I could see Tugs, Ned, and the rest here.

Stone City - Grant Wood

Do you have a Why Iowa thought you’d like to share? Add a comment below. If you’d like to write a guest post or share an image on this topic, email me here.

Article originally appeared on Anne Ylvisaker (http://www.anneylvisaker.com/).
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