A Few Thoughts and a Giveaway!

A Few Thoughts and a Giveaway!

There are a couple of things which have been on my mind of late which I thought I would share. Incidentally, as a side note, I’ve noticed in looking at my past posts, that I typically post information about myself, updates, book excerpts, and the like. Not sure if people find that more or less interesting than informational posts, but it is what it is, I suppose.

The first thing I have been considering is the genre of romance, specifically with respect to Jane Austen, and my small corner within it. I think the other male authors might echo my experiences when I say that I often get criticized for my writing being less romance based than most of the ladies. In fact, I had a reviewer say early on in my career that it was indicative of almost all male writers. (I’m not even going to discuss the reviewer who constantly complains about the names I assign to characters. Do other authors get that?)

But I’ve been thinking of this a lot lately, and while this ties into the other thoughts I wanted to share, I was wondering if I truly write less romance than Jane Austen did. Let’s consider the novel on which most of my works are based.

Pride and Prejudice is mostly from Elizabeth’s point of view, and she spends the first half of the story hating Darcy and the next quarter realizing that she misjudged him. It’s not until they meet at Pemberley that she really begins to realize that they might be suited for each other. Even then, there aren’t a lot of what I would call “romantic” types of scenes between them. In fact, I would argue that the various screen productions play up that aspect for their viewers. I’m thinking of the specific scene in the 1995 version at Pemberley where Darcy is looking at Elizabeth while she’s turning the pages for Georgiana, and does a great job of looking like a smitten man! In my opinion, the romance was not the main focus of Jane Austen’s writing. It was the story and the setting which was more important, that and the growth of the characters, some for the better, some not.

These are only my thoughts off the cuff—many who read this might have a completely different opinion. I would submit that my writing actually mirrors Jane Austen’s to a certain degree, though I am not arrogant to believe that I could ever mimic her. The story is the most important part of my narrative, that and the circumstances into which I contort the characters in order to bring them together. Feel free to disagree and let me know in the comments!

The other thought which has been running through my mind lately has come about because of the new audiobook. I’ve posted a number of times, but for those who were not aware, In the Wilds of Derbyshire was recently made into an audiobook and is scheduled for release on July 3. I obtained a copy of the audiobook so I could listen to it and see how it was portrayed. Suffice to say that Mary Sarah, the narrator, is awesome! I really enjoyed her performance!

I think a certain level of introspection and honesty about the work I have done is entirely healthy, and the audiobook provided me with perspective on that particular book, contrasting with my work since then. I think there are some things that I’ve learned to do better in the year since I published Derbyshire, but I think there are some other things I have gotten away from, things which made that particular novel such a success. I hope to be able to take what I’ve learned and inject it into my writing going forward. I firmly believe that if I’m not improving, I’m likely going the other direction!

Anyway, thank you for sticking out through my rambling, if you’ve made it this far. For all I know, people aren’t really interested in these “author information” posts. If you’d prefer more of the other kind, let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to oblige!

Now for the giveaway. I have a copy of my latest audiobook, In the Wilds of Derbyshire for one of those who comment below. The giveaway ends at midnight on Thursday, July 5. A winner’s announcement will appear on this blog on Sunday, July 8. Good luck!

Finally, I’ve got a new project in the works, and it’s scheduled to be released next month. It’s a bit of a departure from anything I’ve done before. Does anyone like mysteries?

18 Responses to A Few Thoughts and a Giveaway!

  1. Jann, if I’m not mistaken the audiobook cover is different from the e-book and paperback editions. Will you be changing the e-book cover to be the same as audiobook cover?

    I love a bit of mystery added to a book so I look forward to your new release. I enjoy both informative posts or author updates/excerpts. As long as the storyline is good and piques my interest, I don’t mind reading books with less romance in them. So please keep on writing good stuff.

  2. Congratulations on the new audio book. The thing I love about JAFF is that there are so many different approaches to writing these stories and it gives us a never ending variety to choose from. Best Wishes!

  3. I believe we should have more male writers in this genre. The male perspective gives a different viewpoint and at times doesn’t seem too ridiculous. Don’t get me wrong, I am enjoying other P&P variations, but at times things seem absurd and I can picture JA reading these and rolling her eyes. Thanks for the different avenue of thought. Hope that makes since, think my brain was working faster than my fingers.

  4. I have only read 2 of your books plus I bought 3 others but I haven’t read yet. For the 2 that I have read, I think it had plenty of romance that the story warranted (i.e A Summer in Brighton). I don’t know what I prefer in a story but really don’t like those stories with too much lovey-dovey.. a meaningful, clean moment even tough no spoken words from the characters is enough to complete the emotions conveyed and to complete the story. I do like informational posts, also knowing upcoming releases. Have only read very few mystery stories and I had enjoyed them (they were short however. I seem to forget and lose track of what happened and who did what and who was where) Anyway, looking forward to your upcoming book

  5. Reading the book was delightful, as all of your books have been for me. Listening to this one would undoubtedly be also. Thank you.

  6. Looking forward to your new audiobook release. I also enjoy reading your personal thoughts, please keep it up!

  7. Congratulations on your audiobook! I don’t find male writers less romantic at all. I enjoy the different perspective. It would be interesting to publish something under an obviously female name to see what kind of reviews you get then.

  8. Congratulations ? on your book being made into an audio book and thank you for the chance to win a copy! I love to listen to audio books and frequently share audio books with my mum so we can share and discuss the book as we listen since we share some genres including a love of Austenesque Books.

  9. I agree with you Jann, Jane Austen didn’t write mushy novels. Romance was there, but the characters were more important. Mind you, I love all fluffy, pure romance JAFF as well, but I prefer character based stories. And your portrayal of Elizabeth is one of my favorite. You write her as a compassionate, strong, intelligent woman, maybe sometimes even too perfect. 😉 I always appreciate a male writer, who can create a full fleshed female character.
    Congratulations on your first audiobook release, I hope it is only the beginning. Hint, hint. I’m looking forward to listening to it.

  10. I enjoy reading the male perspective as Austen only wrote from the female mindset. Don’t include me in the give-a-way as I haven’t branched into audio books yet. Congratulations on the audio launch and your mystery next month. I also love that scene in the ’95 P&P. Not only can you read his emotions on his face… Elizabeth’s expression also gave him hope. Yep… that was one beautiful scene.

  11. I enjoy these sort of posts as it makes me feel like I am getting to “know” the author. I do like mysteries so I am intrigued about your new project. Congrats on the audiobook release!

  12. It certainly hasn’t come up in my reading that men write differently in the romance category. It could be that I’m less into the “passion” than I used to be. A hint of romance is all I’m generally looking for, which I think Jane Austin provides in her novels. I enjoy your books, keep up the good work!

  13. Aaaww yes a new book. Thanks for sharing this. The cover looks romantic and feels like spring! I love to read this kind of books. Good luck with your work! Regards and love.

  14. I enjoy a light mystery. I’m not into dark reads.

    That moment in the movie you described is what I tell my husband is the most romantic moment in the movie. Such pure adoration on his face. My husband doesn’t get it even though he likes Austen movies. 🙂 I’m currently rereading Austen’s works. I shall pay attention to how much romance is written on the page but I think you are right. There isn’t much.

  15. Congratulations on your audiobook and upcoming mystery!
    Thank you for sharing some of your writing journey. It is always interesting to hear about fellow authors.
    Our skills (hopefully) improve with every work we produce. 🙂

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