Fresh Gleanings marked the beginning of Marvel's long career in writing and journalism that would last until his death in 1908. Much of his life was spent at a house he purchased and named Edgewood; that area in Connecticut is now named for his home. Two books were inspired by his agrarian lifestyle at Edgewood, My Farm of Edgewood (1863) and Wet Days at Edgewood (1865). He also started his own weekly journal, The Lorgnette, which was mostly satirical, also later published as a book. Perhaps better known was his series of "semi-humorous sketches" titled Reveries of a Bachelor, which went through several editions.
In that collection, which he described as "those floating Reveries which have, from time to time, drifted across my brain," he included a sketch titled "Evening." In it, he imagines the Future as a place presided over by Pride and Ambition where "Fame beckons, sitting high in the heavens." He goes on:
The Future is a great land ; a man cannot go round it in a day; he cannot measure it with a bound; he cannot bind its harvests into a single sheaf. It is wider than the vision, and has no end.
Yet always, day by day, hour by hour, second by second, the hard Present is elbowing us off into that great land of the Future. Our souls indeed, wander to it, as to a home-land; they run beyond time and space, beyond planets and suns, beyond far-off suns and comets, until like blind flies, they are lost in the blaze of immensity, and can only grope their way back to our earth, and our time, by the cunning of instinct.
Cut out the Future—even that little Future, which is the Evening of our life, and what a fall into vacuity! Forbid those earnest forays over the borders of Now, and on what spoils would the soul live?
Richard Watson Gilder later said that Ik Marvel was someone that younger authors looked up to. "His literature was not powerful, but serene and delightful," according to Gilder.