Florence Scovel Shinn
, Camden, New Jersey - October 17
) was an American artist and book illustrator who turned New Thought
spiritual teacher, and metaphysical writer in her middle years. In New Thought circles, she is best known for her first book "The Game of Life and how to Play it"
Born Florence Scovel in New Jersey , she was the daughter of a lawyer, Alden Cortland Scovel. She was educated in Philadelphia where she attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
and there met her future husband, the artist Everett Shinn
(1876-1953). After marriage they moved to 112 Waverly place, near Washington Square, New York and pursued their separate artistic careers. She and Everett were divorced in 1912.
Writings and New Thought
Her metaphysical works began with her self-published "The Game of Life and how to Play it"
in 1925. "Your Word is Your Wand" was published in 1928 and " The Secret Door to Success" in 1940. "The Game of Life and how to Play it"
includes quotes from the Bible and allegedly real-life anecdotes to explain the author's understanding of God and man. Her philosophy centers around the power of positive thought and usually includes instructions for verbal or physical affirmation. For example, a typical Scovel Schinn piece of advice would be to "spend money like you have lots of it and you will always find more". Her advice is usually accompanied by a "real life" anecdote involving someone following her advice and finding success.
Shinn is considered part of the New Thought movement, as her writings follow in the tradition of Phineas Quimby (1802 - 1866), Emma Curtis Hopkins (1849-1925), and both Charles Fillmore (1854 - 1948) and Myrtle Fillmore (1845 - 1931), co-founders of the Unity Church.
Motivational author Louise Hay acknowledges her as an early influence.
Her philosophy has been summarised as "the invisible forces are ever working for man who is always ‘pulling the strings’ himself, though he does not know it. Owing to the vibratory power of words, whatever man voices, he begins to attract" (1925, p. 21).
- Shinn, F. S. (1925). The Game of Life. In The writings of Florence Scovel Shinn (1988, pp.1 – 92). Marina del Rey, CA: DeVorss & Company.
- Your Word is Your Wand 1928
- The Secret Door to Success 1940.
- Collected works: F.S. Shinn, The Wisdom of Florence Scovel Shinn: Four complete books, Fireside Books, New York, 1989.
- Promoting Authentic Learning through a Peaceful and Positive Perspective L Gatlin, R Edwards - Journal of Authentic Learning, Volume 4, Number 1, Pages 1-8, June 2007, 2007 oswego.edu
- MARK OPPENHEIMER "The Queen of the New Age". New York Times. Retrieved on 2008-08-10., Mark Oppenheimer, New York Times Magazine, May 4, 2008. Accessed May 2008.]
- Butler-Bowdon, Tom 50 Success Classics: Winning Wisdom for Work and Life from 50 Landmark Books Published 2004 Nicholas Brealey Publishing, page 235 on - Florence Scovel Shinn. ISBN 1857883330 Accessed May 2008.
- Haanel, Charles F. Master Key Arcana Published 2004, Kallisti Publishing. Page 148. ISBN 0967851440
The Cornish Colony:
- Virginia Reed Colby, James B. Atkinson, Footprints of the Past, Images of Cornish, New Hampshire and the Cornish Colony. New Hampshire Historical Society, Concord, New Hampshire, 1996.