Austen Authors is proud to announce the winners of the April Giveaways. If your name is below, please contact Regina Jeffers at either firstname.lastname@example.org (or) email@example.com to claim your prize. In the email, please include your name and mailing address.
Now, for the winners…
From Sharon Lathan‘s launch celebration of The Passions of Dr. Darcy, Patricia Finnegan received an autographed copy of the book, while Angela Smith and Wendy Norris Roberts, each received eBook versions.
Mary Simonsen has awarded two lucky winners with an eBook version of her latest release When They Fall in Love. Those winners are Karana and Maria.
From the Guest Post from Kathleen Anderson and Susan Jones’s Jane Austen’s Guide to Thrift, the Tea Temptress was named the winner.
Pride and Prejudice and Kitties by Pamela James and Deborah Guyol was won by Luthien84.
Charlene Davis will be the lucky recipient of an autographed copy of Nina Benneton‘s Compulsively Mr. Darcy.
Kathy will receive an autographed copy of Colette Saucier‘s Pulse and Prejudice.
Welcome to the twelth installment of The Bennet Brother, the interactive group writing project from Austen Authors! At the end of this segment, you’ll have a chance to vote on what happens next. There are also extra details on Twitter, where this story has taken on a life of its own. Mr. Edward Bennet (@edwbennet) already has a notable presence and regularly interacts with readers, including this interview with Miss Leatherberry on Leatherbound Reviews:
Full details on Pride & Prejudice Reader’s Choice can be read by clicking to the page via the menu above or the icon to the left.
Voting for today’s installment will end at 6am tomorrow – Thursday, May 2nd. Next week, the story continues with a new addition by Sharon Lathan. The previous ten installments can be read in order on The Writers Block.
And now, here is Scene #12 by Colette Saucier~~
Elizabeth had tarried, she knew, too long in the Pemberley library, grazing her fingers over the bindings, aligning yet another shelf, as she had done whenever left to her own amusement. Reminded yet again of the superiority of the Darcy’s upbringing, she could not but feel somewhat embarrassed for her affectionate praise of her father’s eclectic taste in books – even if it might have saved Mr. Darcy’s life. Had she read every book at her disposal at Longbourn, which she was in a fair way of doing, she would not have touched upon but a mere fraction of the delights of the library of Pemberley. Before she gave way to the reflections of what being the mistress of such an estate might mean, of having such a library as one’s own, she recollected herself. Mr. Darcy had invited her here to be a companion to his sister and thought of her with nothing beyond gratitude for having played nursemaid, as he had said little to her at all since leaving his sick bed; and she could not forget he had found her not handsome enough to tempt him even to dance.
After making her selection, Elizabeth returned to the drawing-room where Mr. and Mrs. Hurst were at quadrille with Miss de Bourgh and her companion Mrs. Jenkinson, Miss Darcy played at the pianoforte as Mrs. Annesley turned the pages, and Mr. Darcy was writing a letter with Miss Bingley sitting nearby, commending him on his handwriting and the evenness of his lines.
“You write uncommonly fast,” said she.
“You are mistaken. I write rather slowly.”
“How many letters you must have occasion to write in the course of a year! Letters of business, too! How odious I should think them!”
“It is fortunate, then, that they fall to my lot instead of yours.”
Elizabeth turned away to hide a smile, and her gaze fell upon Mr. Bingley and Jane, in quiet conversation near the fire. Elizabeth had noted with great delight that whenever possible, Mr. Bingley – full of joy and attention – would sit near her sister and spoke scarcely to anyone else. Continue reading →
Austen Authors is pleased to announce the Giveaways for May. To enter the giveaway, leave a comment on any of our daily posts. The more often one comments, the greater the opportunity to win. Use the Rafflecopter option to Social Media for additional opportunities to win.
And now for the prizes…
Jack Caldwell launched his latest title, Mr. Darcy Came to Dinner, on April 30, but this month, two lucky winners will receive autographed copies of the book.
Regina Jeffers will launch the fifth book in her Regency romance series on May 14. A Touch of Mercy is the latest in her highly popular Realm Series. One of our visitors will receive an autographed copy of Regina’s book, while two others will earn eBook versions.
Abigail Reynolds will release her next Austen-inspired novel, Mr. Darcy’s Noble Connections, at the end of the month. As part of Abigail’s launch, two of our visitors will receive eBook versions of the novel.
Marilyn Brant is feeling especially benevolent this month. One of her winners will receive an According to Jane tote bag, while another will receive a PDF version of Marilyn’s extremely popular Double Dipping.
Finally, Jack Caldwell is back with a triple giveaway. Three different winners will receive an autographed copy of one of Jack’s fabulous books. Up for grabs is a copy of Pemberley Ranch, another of The Three Colonels, and a third of Mr. Darcy Came to Dinner.
It is with a great deal of pride and satisfaction that I announce the official release of my third novel, Mr. Darcy Came to Dinner: a Pride & Prejudice farce. It is also my first release through our own imprint, White Soup Press.
Y’know, several years ago, when Abigail Reynolds talked me into sending one of my manuscripts to a publisher, I never dreamed that I would be publishing my third book, with ambitions to publish many more. So much of the praise or blame (take your pick) goes to her.
As long as I’m handing out thanks, most of mine must go to my wonderful team of editors, my own Beta Babes: Debbie Styne, Ellen Pickles, Mary Anne Mushatt, and my lovely wife and muse, Barbara. Ellen also gets a pat on the back for the cover.
Some of you are familiar with this work, as it had been posted online previously. Have I changed anything with the story? No. Do I still request that you buy it? Oh my goodness, yes!
For those who have not read this before, let me briefly describe the plot. This is my take on a Pride & Prejudice variation, something that my Austen Author friends do so well.
The story picks up at my point of departure from Jane Austen’s plot. After Jane Bennet recovered from her illness at Netherfield, Mr. Darcy and the Bingley party are invited to dinner at Longbourn. There are new arrivals in town: the Bennets’ cousin, Mr. Collins, and another gentleman from Derbyshire, Mr. Wickham.
When Darcy and Bingley come upon the Bennet ladies and Mr. Collins meeting Mr. Wickham for the first time in Meryton, Collins announces that Darcy is engaged to Anne de Bourgh. Darcy, instead of correcting him, rides off in a huff.
Later, Elizabeth Bennet is pondering Mr. Darcy’s rude behavior while walking near the road in front of Longbourn. In her arms is the family cat, Cassandra. So lost in thought, Elizabeth does not hear Darcy galloping down the road until he is almost upon her. For his part, Darcy is angry and distracted. Cassandra the cat takes fright, startles Darcy’s rented horse, and the master of Pemberley is thrown from the saddle. Darcy’s leg is broken and forehead is gashed.
The Bennet family offers aid to the stricken man just as the Bingley carriage arrives. A distraught Miss Bingley faints at the sight of blood on Darcy’s face.
We pick up the story after the local apothecary, Mr. Jones, has attended to the injured Darcy:
The soup was taken away, and just as the party began to partake of the next course, Mr. Jones came into the room. Mr. Bennet immediately invited the apothecary to join them to dine. This earned a comment from Mr. Collins about inappropriate condescension of a country squire—what was perhaps acceptable in Hertfordshire would not be tolerated in Kent. Mr. Bennet allowed this insult to pass without comment, and a red-face Mr. Jones took his seat—in Mr. Darcy’s chair, Elizabeth noticed. Continue reading →
Over the past year, I seem to have an inordinate number of family and friends – both those I know in person, as well as in cyberspace – who have have experienced serious health issues. For some, it’s their own personal health or that of one or more family members. The reasons vary. It could be due to disease (strokes, heart problems, cancer, etc.) or an injury (back pain, knee or hip replacements, broken bones due to falls). Sadly, many people I know have suffered the loss of one or more family members.
All of this made me recall a scene in a movie called “Just Between Friends” in which the husband of one of the characters (Holly, played by Mary Tyler Moore) dies in a terrible accident. Many friends, co-workers, and family gather at Holly’s house after the funeral to share food and memories. As one of the couples is leaving, they say to Holly, “Just let us know if there’s anything we can do for you.” Holly looks around the room – and being a bit of a neat freak – starts thinking about how much work it’s going to be to clean up after everyone leaves and how little physical and emotional energy she has for such activities. Half-jokingly, she says something like, “How about vacuuming the living room?” The couple is completely taken aback. Of course, Holly makes a joke about it, pretending she was just kidding when I’m sure she would have loved it if they’d taken her up on it. If that couple had truly understood what she was going through, they would have gone back inside and pitched in with the clean up – but of course, they didn’t. I’ve never forgotten that scene in the movie.
In the past, families generally lived closer together making it easier for them to rally around in a crisis. With the way we live now, we often find ourselves on our own with only a small support group as back up – and the sad truth is, it’s not easy to ask for help. Continue reading →
‘Oh, the lamps of a night! her rich goldsmiths, print-shops, toy-shops, mercers, hardware men, pastry-cooks, St Paul’s churchyard, the Strand, Exeter Change, Charing Cross, with a man upon a black horse! These are thy gods, O London!’
Most shopkeepers lived with their families above or behind their premises. They were usually specialists in the goods they sold, and very often the craftsman who made them – whether a shoemaker, tailor, hatter, fan-maker, umbrella-maker or jeweller – often there was no distinction between retailer and wholesaler. There were no regular shopping hours – the shopkeeper opened his shop before breakfast and closed it before he retired for the night.
Sophie von la Roche, a German novelist, wrote about Oxford Street to her daughters in 1785:
We strolled up and down lovely Oxford Street this evening, for some goods look more attractive by artificial light. Just imagine, dear children, a street taking half an hour to cover from end to end, with double rows of brightly shining lamps, in the middle of which stands an equally long row of beautifully lacquered coaches, …
First one passes a watchmaker’s, then a silk or fan store, now a silversmith’s, a china or glass shop. The spirit booths are particularly tempting, for the English are in any case fond of strong drink. Here crystal flasks of every shape and form are exhibited: each one has a light behind it which makes all the different coloured spirits sparkle. … Just as alluring are the confectioners and fruiterers, where, behind the handsome glass windows, pyramids of pineapples, figs, grapes, oranges and all manner of fruits are on show … Most of all, we admired a stall with Argand and other lamps … forming a really dazzling spectacle … Continue reading →
As writers of Jane Austen fiction, those of us who write historically set our novels somewhere during the first two decades of the 1800s when Jane lived and set her books. That era is roughly referred to as the “Regency” due to the nine-year rule of the Prince of Wales as Regent while his father King George III was incapacitated from mental illness. Technically the Regency Era began in 1811 and ended in 1820 when George III died and the Prince Regent became King George IV, and was a mere sliver in the broader Georgian Period spanning 1714 to 1830. Taking the looser interpretation of the Regency, the era refers more to the tone, style, and philosophy of those early decades, all of which were starkly different than the decades before 1800.
My latest novel, The Passions of Dr. Darcy, opens in 1789 and although George Darcy spends the bulk of his time in India rather than England, the influences were from a period well before the Regency. So what was different? A ton! But since fashion is the most fun, let’s talk about that today.
I am going to focus on men’s clothing. Images of period portraits or preserved garments from the day are the best way to get the visual across. What I share in this post are a mere handful of what I have in my Regency and Georgian fashion albums in my Portrait Gallery, and on boards in Pinterest, for both men and women.
The man chosen to grace the cover of The Passions of Dr. Darcy is not only a near-perfect vision of George Darcy, he is an excellent example of 1818 style. A little off-the-mark for a young George in late-1780s, but a fine contrast in men’s fashion for this post. Continue reading →
Welcome to the eleventh installment of The Bennet Brother, the interactive group writing project from Austen Authors! At the end of this segment, you’ll have a chance to vote on what happens next. There are also extra details on Twitter, where this story has taken on a life of its own. Mr. Edward Bennet (@edwbennet) already has a notable presence and regularly interacts with readers, including this interview with Miss Leatherberry on Leatherbound Reviews:
Full details on Pride & Prejudice Reader’s Choice can be read by clicking to the page via the menu above or the icon to the left.
Voting for today’s installment will end at 6am tomorrow – Thursday, April 25th. Next week, the story continues with a new addition by Colette Saucier. The previous ten installments can be read in order on The Writers Block.
And, now, here is Scene #11 by Shannon Winslow~~
Wickham struck a jaunty pose of unconcern whilst the others discussed what was to be done with their captive. They were an improbable band of magistrates to decide the case, and, with not one able-bodied man to their credit, seemed still less likely to effectively enact any plan of action against the miscreant. Suddenly, a violent shout ringing out from away off suggested a definite course of action.
“Apprehend that thief!”
All eyes turned toward the noise, which seemed to emanate from the direction of the knoll (the very same knoll where Elizabeth and Mrs. Reynolds had so recently stood). Mr. Darcy’s valiant figure could clearly be distinguished there, pausing only briefly to observe the effect of his command before hurrying on toward the scene.
Elizabeth, feeling a tug at the reins, which were still wrapped tightly about her hand, turned in time to see Mr. Wickham making another try for Charlemange. That failing, he next attempted to throw himself aboard Georgiana’s mount. Instead of riding off down the path and out of danger, however, Wickham let out a loud groan and slid helplessly to the earth, the side of his face ultimately coming to rest on a pillow of the fragrant, aforementioned Derbyshire’s Best.
“What happened?” asked Georgiana in some distress. “Has he been shot? Is he dying?”
“No, Miss Darcy,” answered Edward, grimacing. “Nothing quite so grievous. I predict that Mr. Wickham will recover in due course. It was not a lead ball that was his undoing. I believe it was the unfortunate placement of the sidesaddle’s pommels that did the damage – painful, but temporary.” Continue reading →
On Sunday, April 14 we were fortunate to welcome Drs. Kathleen Anderson and Susan Jones to our blog. They are the collaborative authors of Jane Austen’s Guide to Thrift, available everywhere NOW! In a very fun, informative post they took readers through a possible typical day with Jane Austen. In case you missed it, the post can be read by clicking the link below–
Berkley/NAL, publishers of Jane Austen’s Guide to Thrift, graciously offered a copy to one lucky winner, the only stipulation commenting on the post. Easy way to win!
AKA “Tea Temptress”
Julia, the Tea Temptress, is the owner of Bingley’s Teas, by the way. We have hosted Julia on our blog in the past and many of us are big fans of her product. You should check it out!
About Bingley’s Teas~~
Bingley’s Teas is a small tea business. Run by a Tea Temptress obsessed with camellia sinensis in all its forms. Learning from tea masters and traveling to origin when possible, the study of tea never ends. Unfortunately, there are some teas that can be a little disappointing. Julia Matson, Tea Temptress and certified tea specialist, has been in love with tea and tea culture for over 15 years. She created Bingley’s Teas in 2008 in order to share quality teas that she enjoyed and to help others explore loose leaf tea and more traditional style teas. In 2010 the Tea Temptress, who is also very attached to Jane Austen’s novels and Regency world for as many years, brought the tea and Jane obsessions together to pair the characteristics of tea flavors to personalities in Jane Austen novels. Bingley’s Teas, is an online business while occasionally available at festivals in various parts of the country. Julia Matson is a speaker on tea and is available to do tea tastings for private groups.
I was browsing on Pinterest, trying to come up with a topic for my blog rotation here on Austen Authors, and voila, I was inspired by a collection of images that didn’t seem to fit with the search term, “Jane Austen.” I decided to tackle the subject of Jane Austen and her corruption by a Fifty Shades of Grey mentality. First let me say, I have not read the Fifty Shades of Grey novels, and I don’t have anything in particular against them—everyone’s reading tastes are distinctively different. What I am against—not in a ranting, lynch mob sort of way, more in a tsk, tsk sort of way—is dragging Jane into those sorts of books.
I can see the allure. Mr. Darcy is the ultimate, romantic fantasy for many women. And there is naturally a wide spectrum of fantasies–from the completely chaste, to the racy, to the scorching, and beyond. It’s the ‘beyond’ (the BDSM, multiple partners, etc) that seems out of place for Darcy and Elizabeth, and admittedly, leaves me feeling like an overprotective spinster aunt, trying to chaperone my lovely young charge with an iron fist. Not to mention a little hypocritical.
Because for the most part, I have NOTHING against the creative license taken by authors of Jane Austen fan fiction. I love the imagination and creativity, as we all do. There’s plenty of room for new characters, new settings, new romances, and even sex. My point is that the sex shouldn’t eclipse the story itself, and the characters should behave, for the most part, in character, because otherwise, what makes it JA fan fiction and not simply a story with a Mr. Darcy fantasy? Whereas most adaptations feel like homages to our literary darling, the Fifty Shades sort seem more like they’re merely capitalizing on Jane’s popularity. And corrupting it. Continue reading →