It’s a Wide, Wide, Wide, Wide World

The following is a conversation I had with my family not long ago as we were driving back home from a family dinner. I was telling them about an upcoming Jane Austen event and we got to discussing the many JAFF variations that are out there. None of my family members are Jane Austen fans, although they certainly appreciate the wonderful experiences that JAFF has added to our lives!

Hubby: Could you ever write something about Pride and Prejudice and wolverines?

Me: Already been done.

Hubby: What about vampires?

Me: Yep, that too.

Hubby: The supernatural?

Me: There’s an entire series called The Witches of Longbourn

 

At this point my sixteen year old son, in the back seat, groaned audibly.

 

Daughter: Hey, mom, what about Darcy and Elizabeth time traveling?

Me: I’ve seen that before.

Daughter: Darcy and Elizabeth in the old west?

Me: Yep

Daughter: Darcy and Elizabeth in Nazi Germany!

Me: Well, I haven’t actually seen a JAFF set there, but I have seen Pride and Prejudice set in 1940’s America.

Son: (groaning even louder than before) I question your mental sanity!

Daughter: What about Darcy and Elizabeth in outer space?

Me: I haven’t actually seen one of those, but I did come up with a silly idea for a Darcy and Elizabeth story like that called, “Heavenly Bodies.”

Son: Mom, you did NOT just say that!!!!

Daughter (who loves all things Asian and oriental): Why not have Darcy and Elizabeth go to Japan?

Me: Well, in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Elizabeth and her sisters trained at the Shaolin temple in China, while Darcy got his training in Japan. So that’s been done too.

Son: (Still hung up on Heavenly Bodies.) That’s the corniest title ever!!!!!

Me: I’ve seen Pride and Prejudice stories set in the old west, on deserted islands, and in modern times. I’ve seen people from Pride and Prejudice transported into our times, and people from our times transported into their time.

Son: I’m not sure I can handle any of this.

Daughter: What about a Pride and Prejudice murder mystery?

Me: It’s been done. In fact there’s an entire series on it.

Son: You all need help!

Me: I’ve also seen stories where characters from totally different Jane Austen novels get thrown together into one setting. It’s a lot of fun!

Son: (Holds head and moans quietly)

 

Yes, it’s a wide, wide, wide, wide world of Jane Austen fan fiction out there! There’s definitely a story for everyone, no matter what their interest or taste. My son may think that we hard core Jane Austen fans need help, but that’s just because he hasn’t become a Jane Austen fan himself . . . . yet. 🙂

I’ll end this post with a plot bunny proposed by a good friend of mine. Feel free to run with it:

Darcy and Elizabeth, accidentally traveling from England to America together (after the first proposal, of course), are kidnapped from their ship by the dread pirate Wickham, who forces them into slavery. Darcy escapes and creates his own band of pirates to rescue Elizabeth, then travels the high seas to punish those who ruined their lives. Meanwhile, aliens.

Happy writing!

27 Responses to It’s a Wide, Wide, Wide, Wide World

  1. What a fun family conversation! My mom just kind of shakes her head when she looks at my JAFF bookcase. I haven’t told her how many are on my kindle, probably because I have no idea. I love exploring all the different fanfic plots out there and it’s cool when you come across something you’ve not seen before. I don’t have any in-person JAFF friends, either, though I did get one of my bookworm coworkers to go see P&P&Zombies with me when it came out. I think I liked it alot more than she did!

  2. Thanks for such a fun post Elaine. It struck a real chord with me, too.

    I’m a sci-fi/fantasy geek as well as being a Janeite, so anything that combines the two will only ever get a big thumbs up from me. Our son has only inherited the sci-fi/fantasy gene, so when I told him about P&P&Z, his reaction was pretty much the same as your family’s, Elaine. He and his girlfriend have borrowed my Blu-Ray copy, found it totally bizarre and of course they missed every single nod to P&P and other Austen works. I actually enjoy it more every time I watch it and zombies aren’t usually my thing. I also introduced him to Anne McCaffrey’s Pern novels when he was in his early teens and he totally loves them. Then I told him that someone was writing the equivalent of P&P and Dragons – well, you could actually HEAR his eyes rolling!

    Like Glynis, I have few people I know outside the virtual world who share my “addiction”. One of those few just happens to be someone I introduced to our world in the first place. Two others are people I met online first before meeting them in person. So I too am grateful for all the authors who’ll spend time to chat to us readers and for the friendships I now have with them and other readers.

    I love the Princess Bride-style reference at the end, referring to the Dread Pirate Wickham. Can’t imagine he’d be anything like Cary Elwes’ Dread Pirate Roberts, though.

    • Come to think of it, I don’t have anyone IRL who is also a Janeite. All of my Janeite friends are online, but that’s fine. I’ve made a ton of new friends through this experience!

      And I, too, really enjoyed PP&Z, which was a total surprise. Zombies? Really???

      • Don’t you just love the Hunsford “proposal scene”? And Matt Smith was so wonderful as Parson Collins that he’s replaced Nitin Ganatra from Bride and Prejudice as my favourite Collins.

        • I agree with you on both points. The proposal scene in particular is highly entertaining. And as a martial artist I definitely enjoy all the fighting in that movie.

  3. Thanks for sharing this conversation, so cute! It’s amazing how much exists for Jaff, we are so fortunate. I am also a Dickens fan and haven’t been able to find any variations for the stories I love. I think it’s a testament to how loved Jane Austen is that for her there is such variety!

  4. Loved the comments with your son… what a hoot. I think a fun story would be to reach back to Darcy’s Norman connections. There should be a winery involved somehow. I can just see the landscape and someone would need to travel to France to research for the story,,, of course. Yeah, a trip to France would just be marvelous. It is a wide, wide world after all. Thanks for taking us there in each and every JAFF that you write.

    • I’ve got it! I’ve got it! Fitzwilliam D’Arcy and the Benet family of France, circa 1400’s. Like Romeo and Juliet, only it’s ODC.

      And thank you so much for the compliment! It’s great to hear that positive feedback.

  5. That was very funny, Elaine. I’ve always wanted to do a pirate JAFF, actually, but I don’t know that much about ships and sailing, and all that must go with it. Maybe someday! Any excuse for more sword fighting 🙂

  6. I too have no friends or relatives who share my love of JAFF so I am very happy that many authors like you are prepared to chat to their readers. I myself can’t think of any new situations for ODC but as long as they love each other and end up together (preferably before the very end of the book) then I will happily read it. Thanks for this fun post Elaine and I am glad your family try to be so helpful??

    • Thanks Glynis! I’m curious what you mean about having our ODC end up together “preferably before the very end of the book”. Do you mean that you prefer to see stories where there’s a little at the end showing them together as a happy couple?

  7. I enjoyed your post.

    When I first started reading JAFF, I had no idea of how creative people could be writing it, and how much variety there would be in the stories.

    I have only one family member who reads my JAFF, a sister-in-law. She also found she was a source for an incident in one of my earlier stories. To explain why Elizabeth didn’t ride, I had her having fallen off a horse when she was young and break both arms. This happened to my sister-in-law.

    • I was stunned when I found all the variations as well. Some of them are definitely more to my taste than others. Their versatility is a tribute to Austen’s talent for creating believable personalities.

  8. What a conversation to eavesdrop on!!!
    I think your son has grave concerns about you,Elaine! However should he realise that we are all equally as besotted with these beloved characters,then in sure he’d cart us all off to Bedlam where we could enjoy each other’s company and speak of Austen’s characters all day long!

    • Thanks Mary! The best part about this conversation is that there was NO editing! I wrote it down here almost word for word as soon as we got home and that was that!

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