So I’m on vacation in Los Angeles which, frankly, is my favorite city on the planet. Every time we come here, we run into celebrities galore and who doesn’t love that? Besides, Los Angeles has a perfect day every day and that means hanging out on the beach, listening to the waves, and re-reading my favorite books.
That is a vacation that I think we can all agree is…simply…perfect!
Anyway, while I was out here, I received a wonderful phone call. Apparently there will be a meeting in New York City of Austenites on September 12th! The topic of discussion? Emma.
Now, who wouldn’t want to sit in a room and talk about Emma??? I simply cannot wait to attend this meeting and become acquainted with other women (and men, perhaps) who adore Jane Austen.
One of the things that I love about Jane Austen is her uncanny ability to read people. She knows the inner workings of the mind and can describe them in her characters in such a way that you know…literally know…those people.
When I wrote my book, The Matchmaker (published 2015 by Realms, an imprint of Charisma House), I fell in love with Emma. I call her my spirit animal (a phrase my 13-year-old uses and, frankly, I like it so I’m stealing it from her!). Of all Jane Austen’s characters, I feel a strong kinship with Emma…more so than any of the others!
Let’s face it. Jane Austen creates amazing female protagonist! Elizabeth is wonderful, Eleanor intelligent, Marianne innocent, and Fanny sweet. But there is something about Emma that just speaks to me.
Perhaps it is because she real. Very real. She’s not overly intelligent and witty like Elizabeth nor is she overly responsible and practical like Eleanor. Frankly, Emma is blind to the obvious which frequently gets her in trouble. Sounds about right, don’t you think?
How often do we overlook the obvious? We see or hear things that we don’t quite understand or like. So we believe what we want to believe rather than do soul searching to comprehend the obvious.
It happens to me a lot. I over-commit and stress myself out. I observe this trait in other people, believing what they want to believe after seeing what they want to see. The truth shall set you free…but only if you can humble yourself enough to accept it.
Of course, in Jane Austen’s book, things always work out in the end.
In publishing my Amish retelling of Emma, The Matchmaker, I hope I did justice to Jane Austen’s story in creating the Austenite world in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. You see, whether Jane Austen is in England, New York, or even Pennsylvania, her astute ability to create characters that we believe in transcends time and location.
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