I am really excited to share the publication of my short story “Esther on eBay” in Open: Journal of Arts & Letters. First, the presentation of the story in the magazine is just beautiful. Esther really gets the star treatment: https://web.archive.org/web/20190801232527/http://ojalart.com/literary-arts/fiction/short-story/short-story-elizabeth-gauffreaus-esther-ebay/. (Update 1/27/22: Or she did until she ended up in the Wayback Machine!)
Second, the story was inspired by the post “Rogue Gallery” on Katherine Griffith’s blog Photobooth Journal: A Life in a Photobooth. Kate’s blog chronicles her life in a series of photographs, beginning in 1973. I encourage you to spend some time on Photobooth Journal. It’s a fascinating way to chronicle a life.
In addition to her own photobooth images, Kate also posts other people’s photobooth images. And this is where Esther comes in:
I bought this page from an old photo album on Ebay recently. The seller’s description was none too flattering to the subject, which was what attracted me to look at the listing in the first instance. From notes on the back of the page (which has two dilapidated box brownie snaps still attached), I know this lady’s name is Esther, she had a sister or friend called Ethel and that these photos were taken around 1936, possibly in West Michigan USA.
I love Esther. She may not be a classical beauty but she has style, poise and a serene dignity that I find very appealing. She obviously had a thing for photobooths, another reason to admire her!1
To meet Esther, click on the following link, then click on the image to enlarge it and see it more clearly: Rogue Gallery.
I hope you enjoy your time with Esther as much as I did!
1Katherine Griffths, “Rogue Gallery,” Photobooth Journal: A Life in a Photobooth, last modified September 22, 2011, accessed August 6, 2019, https://photoboothjournal.com/2011/09/22/rogue-gallery/.