Category Archives: Uncategorized

Takin’ a Break From Love

I first published this in October of 2011. Wow, how time does fly. And things do change.

The relentless romance of Valentine’s Day has me a little weary today so I thought I’d bring back this wonderful photograph.

I call her Joy. I call the camel Fred.

matchless joy

Look at those precious little fingers!!

Photo credit: sueswink.tumblr.com

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Prezzies on the BIG Day

Next Wednesday is Valentine’s Day and I’m sure, like me, you’re being inundated with ads for gifts to give your beloved.

If you believe the day is being prostituted by the flower and card cabal, I’m sure you do your best to ignore it all. I think it’s funny that we’ve taken a day dedicated to a saint, who died a gruesome death, and made it over as a day for lovers.

We won’t even talk about the massacre that took place in Chicago in 1929.

Leading up to the big day I thought it would be interesting to take a quiz.

You can view the poll results by clicking on the link right above.

And what do I want? I’m big on kitchen gadgets and lunch at my favorite Mexican restaurant, Lupe’s Escape.

A Very Austen Christmas

Book Launch Tomorrow!

A Very Austen Christmas - 3DIn early June, Laura and I broached the idea of an anthology to include all the authors of Jane Started It, along with our lovely friend, JAFF author Wendi Sotis. Susan Kaye, Pamela Aiden, and Gayle Mills originally intended to be a part of the project, but real life threw several hitches in their plans. Laura Hile, Barbara Cornthwaite, Wendi Sotis, and I kept the dream alive.

Tomorrow, that dream will be realized with the book launch of A Very Austen Christmas, hosted by Claudine Pepe at JustJane1813.  We are very much looking forward to reading Claudine’s review (our first one!), as well as chatting with our readers.

The kindle version is already available for pre-order (to be delivered tomorrow) on Amazon, and the print copy is live, though they are not yet linked together.

Does this sound tempting, lovely readers?

Four favorite authors, four heartwarming stories set in Jane Austen’s Regency world.

Robin Helm, Laura Hile, Wendi Sotis, and Barbara Cornthwaite revisit Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Mansfield Park to deliver the uplifting holiday storytelling you’re looking for.

Her Christmas Gift by Robin Helm
Elizabeth Bennet finds herself snowbound at Rosings with two rejected, but highly eligible, suitors. Does either man have a chance? Will her childhood friend, Meryton’s golden boy, win her affection, or will she accept the master of Pemberley? Perhaps she will refuse them both a second time. Her Christmas Gift deftly combines tension and emotion with humor and romance.

The Christmas Matchmaker by Laura Hile
It’s raining; it’s pouring – and what could be better than a little Christmas matchmaking? So says Emma Woodhouse who is unexpectedly stranded at Netherfield Park. Mr. Darcy disagrees, for she has someone else in mind for adorable Elizabeth Bennet. Amid meddling, misunderstanding, and an unwelcome proposal or two, will True Love find a way?

No Better Gift by Wendi Sotis
On his way to Derbyshire to spend Christmas with his family, Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy plans to retrieve an item he left behind during his rushed escape from Netherfield—and the country miss who touched his heart. Finding Meryton practically deserted, he fears the worst. What fate could have fallen upon this once-thriving village in only three weeks? More importantly, was Miss Elizabeth Bennet in danger?

Mistletoe at Thornton Lacey by Barbara Cornthwaite
When Edmund Bertram realizes that Fanny is the perfect wife for him, he wants to propose without delay. What better time than at Christmas? Ah, but the course of true love never does run smooth …

A Very Austen Christmas - jpeg

The stories are arranged according to length. Mine is really a novella of 30K words, and Laura’s is 24K words. We have decided that we can’t write short stories (insert laugh). Wendi’s is 17K words and Barbara’s is 7K words. Curl up in your PJs with a mug of hot cocoa and enjoy the writing of four friends with quite different styles and story lines.

We hope that Sue, Pamela, and Gayle will be able to join us in our next anthology. (Yes, I just said next anthology!)

Oops, Jane did it again!

I was busy with RL last week and didn’t see the story that Jane Austen took pen to the pages of her local marriage register and signed up, first with  Henry Frederic Howard Fitzwilliam of London and then again with Edmund Arthur William Mortimer of Liverpool.

There are lots of sources, The Daily Mail and Times of India were my primaries. And they seem to be nearly the same story. They all mention this will be Hampshire’s time to shine with Jane Austen 200th, a celebration of all things Jane. (Jane Austen lived much of her writing life in Hampshire so they get the honor.)

It’s an interesting story, one of the world’s most celebrated spinsters faking, not once but twice, marriage announcements. Very naughty and very modern. However, I am always skeptical when information, readily available for, in this case, well over a century suddenly comes to light. Especially when you consider how many genealogy fans there are all over the world combing the dusty pages of family histories.

Maybe it’s just the mystery fan in me rebelling. Maybe someone stumbled on this tidbit a long time ago and has been saving it. I don’t know.

I’m wearing my wary face on this one.

Someone I Know is Dying

I know, we’re all dying. That’s a given. This person is not close to me, but someone who comes up in conversation and their death will affect my daughter and her children. A lot. This person has been chronically ill for years, but it only now that they and the immediate family have been talking about the end of things.

All I can do is to pray about the situation. Comfort and peace is all I can think about. Not being close there isn’t a place for me in the process. Standing outside looking in I can see why people become advocates of causes when someone dies particularly of a self-induced illness. Anger and busyness can put aside the sadness and pain. For a while I suppose.

The saddest juxtaposition is that spring is coming. That means my house is coming alive with ladybugs and bulbs are blooming. The seasons and time move onward. That’s the only solution for sadness.

 

 

Writing Revolution

Yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks.

I’m in the very final stage of publishing my newest book, Understanding Elizabeth. Because it’s my seventh indie publishing effort, some steps are easier for me, but others have become more complicated.

understanding-elizabeth-09

My earliest writing (the Guardian Trilogy) consisted of outlining the basic plot, writing the chapters, sending my work to my betas, taking their corrections, posting on Beyond Austen (as well as Derbyshire Writer’s Guild, Darcy & Lizzy, Fanfiction, and Austen Underground), formatting, one final edit, and publishing.

I now understand that it is much easier to format as I write, so that isn’t the huge headache it used to be, but I have become much pickier (real word?) about my writing.

I rushed to publish my first six books, but with this latest one, I have taken six months between completing the writing of the story and publishing it. In addition to all the steps listed above (minus posting on all those forums except Beyond Austen), I have gone through six edits and rewrites. I finished the final rewrite yesterday, and I’m nearly ready to release my child to make her way in the world.

Today, I hope to put the book in the print template so I’ll have a page count for the cover designer. I also want to finish the formatting of the ebook version and send it to my very talented friend, author Wendi Sotis. She’s a wizard at all things tech, and she has the final look at my formatting.

With a little luck, I may publish the ebook Saturday. 

Exciting times!