Saturday, April 28, 2012

Touring Mr. Darcy's Derbyshire with Lynne Robson

Part 2: Touring Derbyshire with Lynne Robson
Hi, Darcyholics!  I am very happy to be back home with a strong wireless connection and the ability to download and upload all of the gorgeous pictures that Lynne has to show us of her beautiful Derbyshire.  Hope you enjoy them as much as I have.  Hopefully Lynne will share with us in comments where each picture was taken.
 
Upcoming Guest Posts Are As Follows:
May 1--Matt Duffy
May 4--Susan Adriani
May 8--Annette W.
May 11--Beth Massey
May 15--Erlynn K.
May 18--Rebecca T.
May 22--Candy M. (So Little Time...)
May 25--Karen Cox
May 29--Jan Ashe
June 1--Kara Louise
June 5--Sharon Lathan
June 8--Gayle Mills
June 12--Shannon Winslow
June 15--Karen Wasylowski
June 19--Krista Bagley
June 22--Stephanie Hamm
June 26--Laurel Ann Nattress
June 29--Pam Dixon
And Many more to come!
&*&*&*&*&*&

Comments on Lynne’s posts, Parts 1 and 2, will be entered into a drawing for two eBook copies of her most recent book, 'Wait Until...'.   Entries will be based on comments on blog posts; but additional chances will be given for joining this site, tweeting this post, Joining this site as a member!, sharing this on Facebook or your blog, Friend me on Facebook, clicking 'like’ on Barbara Tiller Cole, Author's Facebook page, Join Darcyholic Diversions Facebook Page or following BarbTCole on Twitter.
Touring Mr. Darcy's Derbyshire with Lynne Robson

I am thrilled to be able to share with you pictures that Lynne Robson has shared with me (BTCole).  

The photos are all taken in Derbyshire; from Derwent Valley, to Chatsworth, to Bakewell, Monseldale and Linaker Lakes and surrounding areas.
 

I can just imagine Elizabeth on her tour with the Gardiners, driving along this lane.




Or stopping to tour along the way.

With this glimpse of fall, perhaps we will get an invitation to the Fall Festival at Pemberley?



 I love the reflection in the water.






Even on cloudy days, the sites are glorious to witness.  Perhaps Mr. Darcy will stop by to take a dip in the water?




 I can see why Elizabeth loves to romp through the woods.






Perhaps a picnic along the shore?






 Perhaps Mr. and Mrs. Darcy stayed all day along the bank.






Thank you, Lynne, for this beautiful pictorial adventure through the land of Mr. Darcy!  









Thursday, April 26, 2012

Lynne Robson: Darcy's Derbyshire Momma!

Welcome Lynne Robson!
Hi, Darcyholics!  It is my honor to welcome Lynne Robson to Darcyholic Diversions today.  Lynne lives in Derbyshire, home to Mr. Darcy!  So in addition to letting us know a little about her hour journey into her Darcyholism.  I will also be sharing her pictures from Derbyshire soon.   I am at a conference in Texas in a hotel with all but useless internet.  I have not been able to download her VERY lovely pictures, so I will share them in a separate post soon.
 
Upcoming Guest Posts Are As Follows:

April 27--Veronica (Dark Jane Austen Book Club)
May 1--Matt Duffy
May 4--Susan Adriani
May 8--Annette W.
May 11--Beth Massey
May 15--Erlynn K.
May 18--Rebecca T.
May 22--Candy M. (So Little Time...)
May 25--Karen Cox
May 29--Jan Ashe
June 1--Kara Louise
June 5--Sharon Lathan
June 8--Gayle Mills
June 12--Shannon Winslow
June 15--Karen Wasylowski
June 19--Krista Bagley
June 22--Stephanie Hamm
June 26--Laurel Ann Nattress
June 29--Pam Dixon
And Many more to come!
&*&*&*&*&*&

Comments on Lynne’s post will be entered into a drawing for two eBook copies of her most recent book, 'Wait Until...'.   Entries will be based on comments on blog posts; but additional chances will be given for joining this site, tweeting this post, Joining this site as a member!, sharing this on Facebook or your blog, Friend me on Facebook, clicking 'like’ on Barbara Tiller Cole, Author's Facebook page, Join Darcyholic Diversions Facebook Page or following BarbTCole on Twitter.
Lynne R: Darcy's Derbyshire Momma

Lynne,  I thank you for agreeing to do this interview with me today.  Did you grow up in Deryshire?  Do people in Derbyshire grow up KNOWING all about Mr. Darcy?

No, I actually grew up in Halifax in West Yorkshire and moved to Dronfield just before we got married in the 1980's. It is a lovely place and I really enjoy living hear as it is very quiet and a close community. Mick and I moved here to be closer to his job and to be near some of his family as well.

When did you first read, or leave about Pride and Prejudice?  Did you automatically realize its significance to your homeland?

I read Pride and Prejudice first with my mother when I was about 10 and fell in love with Elizabeth's character. Later when in my late teens I read it again at school in English Literature classes and fell in love with Mr Darcy. I had watched the first film and the first series but not enjoyed it as I did the 1995 series which brought to mind where I was living and I tried to picture various places where Mr Darcy's Pemberley may have been. After visiting Ringwood Hall where my daughter is getting married I tried to imagine it as Mr Bingley's Home and that Chatsworth would be something similar to Pemberley I love Chatsworth as we would go each year and picnic in the grounds or take a barbecue and the kids would go swimming in the lake or play volley ball.

When did you first fall in love with  Darcy?

When I was about 16 I must have fallen in love with Mr Darcy as I had an old copy of Pride and Prejudice which my grandmother bought me which I read and read till it fell apart and begrudgingly I had to buy another copy as it was the last thing she bought me before her death. I used to look round my library to see if anyone had written a sequel to it but no one had done so and to me I just needed to know what their kids would be like how they got on as a couple and if Lady C caused any trouble.

Did you watch the BBC P&P when it first came out?  Or was it later that your obsession grew?

I was in hospital when the 1995 series came out and did not see it until my mother brought the video for me when I came home to watch it, I fell in love with the series straight away especially Collin Firth. Mum and me have gone through nearly 8 video's and I have four different versions both region 1 and region 2 as they have different out takes on the video. I have been to Sudbury Hall where the insides were used for the series but not Lime Park. I must admit that I love such as Chatsworth and Bakewell plus some of the area's in the Peaks I used to imagine Mr Darcy and Elizabeth riding on their horses. I know most think that Lizzy cannot ride but I think she could but because they did not have a saddle horse to do so then she walked for exercise.

What can you tell us about Derbyshire that all Darcyholics would want to know? 

Derbyshire is beautiful in the summertime, there are plenty of places to go for a picnic or a barbecue such as like I mentioned Chatsworth grounds which are immense, Padley Gorge, which is quite and a good place to go billberry picking (billberrys are similar to blueberry's only that blueberry's are a lot bigger). MonsalDale is a wonderful place to go it has a beautiful viaduct where steam trains used to travel now it is not used and is classed as an ancient monument, I try to imagine that Mr Darcy had helped to provide this for us to travel safely instead of in a carriage. In winter it can be very cold were I live as I live on a hill and you can get rather bitter winds or snow but that is all to the charm of the place for me. Dronfield is not far from Chesterfield home of the crooked spire and not far from the carriage museum I went there with a couple of people from the HG boards and really enjoyed looking around. The people there provided the carriages which the Wickham's, Lady Catherine, the Bingley's, and Mr Darcy used in the series they told us how much they had liked Colin and Chrispin Bonham Carter as they were very polite and very sexy. One of them I spoke to said how Collin just oozed sex which had us laughing.

When did you decide you wanted to write stories of your own?

After finding pemberley.com in early 2000, I devoured all the stories there and began to look around for other sites finding DWG, Drool, Firthness, Darcyfiction and HG. I followed Abigail Reynolds to HG and found her story Impulse and Initiative the adult version. I loved this story as well as others there. After some time I decided to try one of the stories I wrote when I was about 17 about Lady Catherine which I had wrote for myself only. My betas tjean and Sue Forgue helped me smooth out some of the mistakes I had made and also encouraged me to write more. After Lady Catherine's story I wrote Wait Until..., then The Diary of Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam and lastly The Journals of Thomas Bennet.

Tell us a little bit about your stories.

My first story Surprises at Rosings, I based Lady Catherine on my grandmother who really gave me the love for Jane Austen books like my mom and aunt.  I wanted to show her as a loving person who even though she had lost her own immediate family she still loved life and her nephews and neices.  So when Elizabeth goes to Rosings she is surprised by the woman she meets there.

Wait Until...  I had always wondered what would have happened if Mr Darcy had stayed and helped Lizzy when she got the letters.  I also wanted him to help in finding Wickham and Lydia so they could be found without too much time being lost.  I also liked the idea of Mr Bennet knowing the Earl and Mr Darcy's father from his school days and made him godfather to Colonel Fitzwilliam.  The help that Mr Darcy gives has the pair found and sent on their way to Newcastle with the support of a few soldiers whom he has caused problems with by seducing their daughters.  Due to this Wickham cannot gamble or chase women as he did or these soldiers will be their to make sure he spends more time on latrine duty (yuck!)  Also because they both are spent thrifts he and Mr Bennet make sure that their money pays for food, servants and accommodation before any little luxuries.

The Diary Of Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam This has been written through the eyes of the Colonel starting at Ramsgate where Georgiana is nearly trapped into marrying Wickham, going through to the death of Lady Catherine and Anne where he is left Rosings by Anne. Darcy and Elizabeth are mentioned as are all the Bennet sisters. At the end we see him married and very happy. The second half of this book will be posted at DWG as many people have emailed me for the second half to be written so I will post there.  The title will become The Diaries Of Colonel Richard Fitzwilliam.
Once it is complete like the other books I have written it will be put on the Internet.  I am not removing the ones that are on the website yet as I feel that my friends on the net deserve to have time to read and save it.  It will eventually be removed from the net but when, I don't know. I may just leave it.

The Journals of Thomas Bennet   A satirical view through the eyes of Mr Bennet starting from the birth of Elizabeth to her and Jane's Marriage.  Then the second part which shows married life for Elizabeth and Jane, and later how he comes to father a son David heir to Longbourn.



Friday, April 20, 2012

50 Shades of Darcy

Welcome Elizabeth Aston!
Hi, Darcyholics!  It is my honor to introduce Elizabeth Aston to you today.  I am honored that she has agreed to post with us.  She is, as I type this, at the London Book Festival and I am grateful that she managed to find time to prepared her post for today in between her busy schedule. 

For those of you who have been a part of the 'Authors in Bloom' Blog Tour, my winner here on my site was Margaret!  Congratulations Margaret!  I will be in touch soon!
 
Upcoming Guest Posts Are As Follows:
April 24--Lynn Robson
April 27--Veronica (Dark Jane Austen Book Club)
May 1--Matt Duffy
May 4--Susan Adriani
May 8--Annette W.
May 11--Beth Massey
May 15--Erlynn K.
May 18--Rebecca T.
May 22--Candy M. (So Little Time...)
May 25--Karen Cox
May 29--Jan Ashe
June 1--Kara Louise
June 5--Sharon Lathan
June 8--Gayle Mills
June 12--Shannon Winslow
June 15--Karen Wasylowski
June 19--Krista Bagley
June 22--Stephanie Hamm
June 26--Laurel Ann Nattress
And Many more to come!
&*&*&*&*&*&

Comments on Elizabeth’s post will be the monthly drawings here on Darcyholic Diversions.   Entries will be based on comments on blog posts; but additional chances will be given for joining this site, tweeting this post, Joining this site as a member!, sharing this on Facebook or your blog, Friend me on Facebook, clicking 'like’ on Barbara Tiller Cole, Author's Facebook page, Join Darcyholic Diversions Facebook Page or following BarbTCole on Twitter.
Fifty Shades of Darcy


Ha, that got your attention!

Mr Darcy with curled lip and whip behind his back? Mr Darcy…?

Calm down, this blog isn’t going to be full of wicked scenes and suggestions that Darcy was into sado-masochism, bondage or entered into a relationship with a deeply submissive Elizabeth. You may see him that way, and indeed, I feel sure that someone out there is at this very moment writing a book that will indeed be 50 Shades of Mr Darcy. Just to set the record straight, I don’t see him like that, not at all.

So maybe not fifty shades of anything, but Darcy has certainly become a multi-faceted hero in the minds of his readers. Only consider the many – and contradictory - ways Darcy is reinterpreted in films, in fan fic, in sequels and on blog sites like this one. Even so, as a writer of books set in the world of Jane Austen and particularly the world of Pride and Prejudice, one has to take an angle on Darcy, otherwise one would end up trying to write about a man with multiple personality disorder.

Let’s begin with Darcy’s creator and attend to what the author says about her character. We know his age, we know he is an only son with one sister, that he owns Pemberley, which he inherited from his late father, that he is has more than his fair share of pride in his family and his position in society. He’s the son of a great landowner, possesses an income of at least £10,000 a year, and is the grandson of an earl.

He’s rich, handsome, well-connected and has a terrific house. Is Elizabeth impressed? She is not. Did Jane Austen admire handsome, clever men with large fortunes? You bet she did, but you can also bet that she saw straight through the Mr Darcys of her world and out the other side. That’s why we find him so interesting.

Right, that’s Mr D before he’s been humanised by his love for Elizabeth. The book ends happily with a wiser couple, a wedding and the author’s assurance of their future happiness.

Finished. The End. Story over.

No way. We aren’t going to take her word for it. We long to know what happened next and so the shelves are sagging with the weight of books showing Mr Darcy living in various degrees of marital harmony or disharmony at Pemberley with Elizabeth.
How realistic is this?
Would this able, well-educated man really be content to live the life of a country gentleman? To us, it might seem idyllic: plenty of money, an estate to take an interest in, hunting, shooting and fishing in season – and then the comforts of his family and library for his leisure hours. 

 For my part, I never felt a man as clever and energetic as Darcy would be satisfied with this life. When I wrote Mr Darcy's Daughters, I packed Darcy and Elizabeth off to Constantinople on a diplomatic mission. I had my reasons: I didn't want to write about them as main characters, I felt that Jane Austen and said what she wanted to say about them, and their roles centre stage ended with their marriage.

That’s an artistic choice. But there is more to it than that, because I knew a man of Darcy's background would have a strong sense of service bred into him, and I could see him choosing to play an active part in the affairs of the state.

 I decided to set the date of the marriage of Elizabeth and Darcy in 1797, the probable date of First Impressions. In which case their courtship and marriage would have taken place against a background of war. England in 1797 was at war with France, had been at war for many years and, with a brief break for the Peace of Amiens, would continue to be so for many more years until Napoleon was finally defeated at Waterloo in 1815.

Given his background, it's most likely that Darcy was a Conservative and not a Whig. The Whigs had influence and bags of style, not to mention notoriously loose morals, but what they didn’t have was power because during this time they were in office only very briefly. So the plums and the posts and the positions would have been within the gift of Conservative administrations, and so might well have gone to a man like Darcy.

People have commented that Darcy was too grand to be a diplomat. Far from it, have a quick look at the men sent to serve as ambassadors in Paris at this time – aristocrats every one of them. 

 Mr Darcy in Constantinople in 1817 would have had a delicious title:  Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary. And I can see Elizabeth following in the footsteps of Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, wearing a turban and venturing into the weird and wonderful world of the harem.

That I leave to the reader’s imagination.

For myself, I’d rather think of Mr Darcy scheming among the Ottomans than sitting with his feet up on a sofa at Pemberley. Let him earn his country pleasures – after he has paid his rightful dues to king and country.
 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Susan Mason-Milks: Who is Fitzwilliam Darcy?

Welcome Susan Mason-Milks--Post and Give Away!

Hi, Darcyholics!  I am very happy to welcome Susan Mason-Milks to Darcyholic Diversions today.  I am looking forward to getting to know more about her and I hope you are as well.

In addition, I am honored to be a part of the 'Authors in Bloom' Blog Tour.  I invite you to read MY post 'Take That Leap of Faith'.  There are 70 other blogs that are a part of the give- aways.  All links are available on the left side of this blog. For instructions on how to win the Grand Prize, see my blog post.
 
Upcoming Guest Posts Are As Follows:

April 20--Elizabeth Ashton
April 24--Lynn Robson
April 27--Veronica (Dark Jane Austen Book Club)
May 1--Matt Duffy
May 4--Susan Adriani
May 8--Annette W.
May 11--Beth Massey
May 15--Erlynn K.
May 18--Rebecca T.
May 22--Candy M. (So Little Time...)
May 25--Karen Cox
May 29--Jan Ashe
June 1--Kara Louise
June 5--Sharon Lathan
June 8--Gayle Mills
June 12--Shannon Winslow
June 15--Karen Wasylowski
June 19--Krista Bagley
June 22--Stephanie Hamm
June 26--Laurel Ann Nattress
And Many more to come!
&*&*&*&*&*&

Comments on Susan’s post will be entered to win a copy of her book, Mr. Darcy's Proposal.  An eBook to an international winner, and a soft cover copy to a winner from the US or Canada.   Entries will be based on comments on blog posts; but additional chances will be given for joining this site, tweeting this post, Joining this site as a member!, sharing this on Facebook or your blog, Friend me on Facebook, clicking 'like’ on Barbara Tiller Cole, Author's Facebook page, Join Darcyholic Diversions Facebook Page or following BarbTCole on Twitter.


Who Is Fitzwilliam Darcy?
True confession—when I read Pride and Prejudice in the eighth grade, I didn’t like it. As a matter of fact, I have a vague recollection of specifically disliking Darcy. Ironically, my opinion of him must have coincided with Elizabeth’s initial view, but just as she did, I gave him a second chance and discovered there was more to him than my first impression.

 My Darcy obsession began in 1995 when I watched the Pride and Prejudice mini-series. I was in love! It wasn’t Colin Firth I fell for (although he’s gorgeous); it was the enigmatic Mr. Darcy. Before the series was even over, I had read P&P, and shortly after that, all the rest of Austen’s novels.

So what is it about Mr. Darcy that makes so many of us swoon? Andrew Davies, who wrote the script for the 1995 series, had this to say: “Darcy is the perfect romantic hero because he’s mysterious enough, standoffish enough and arrogant enough to give women a little bit of a tremor of fear as well as attraction. In a strange way, I think that’s important. I also think he’s a very misunderstood character.”

 In order to write about Darcy, I’ve tried to understand him better. First of all, in spite of Elizabeth’s angry accusation, Darcy is a gentleman in the best sense of the word. As such, he is a loving brother, a loyal friend, and concerned landlord. He’s also honest. Darcy says of himself, “…disguise of any kind is my abhorrence.” In terms of his personality, he is an introvert. He sees things logically and literally and is a bit of a control freak.

As textbook example of an introvert, Darcy tends to be more an observer than a talker, which can make him seem a little mysterious. Don’t be fooled, however, into thinking that just because he doesn’t talk much there’s nothing going on inside. There’s a lot happening in his head. Before he gives an opinion, he has to think it through and/or rehearse his response. When Darcy had something important to say to Elizabeth, especially something as emotionally charged as answering her accusations against him, he felt more comfortable saying it in a letter because he could think it through before putting pen to paper. Writing his response gave him both time to think and more control. 

 To Darcy, a conversation must have a purpose. He’s not the kind of guy who’ll stand around talking about the weather, or heaven forbid, about himself. Mrs. Reynolds says of him, “Some people call him proud, but I never saw anything of it. To my fancy, it is only because he does not rattle away like so many young men.” Also, like most introverts, being around people tires him, and he needs a significant amount of time alone to recharge. Maybe that’s why he likes the library so much!

Darcy tends to give people the impression he’s arrogant, but I suspect at least some of that stern, serious look of his is to scare away mothers and daughters who vie for his attention—plus anyone else he doesn’t want to talk to. Part of his discomfort around strangers, which can come off as aloofness or arrogance, stems from the fact it isn’t easy for him to read people. In his conversation with Elizabeth and Fitzwilliam over the pianoforte at Rosings, he says, “I certainly have not the talent which some people possess of conversing easily with those I have never seen before. I cannot catch their tone of conversation or appear interested in their concerns, as I often see done.” This is clearly a foreshadowing of how badly he misreads and misunderstands Elizabeth’s opinion of him. 

Darcy’s aware he can be little too serious. To balance his more somber side, he enjoys the company of those who have the liveliness he lacks. Look at his closest friends—his cousin Colonel Fitzwilliam and Charles Bingley. Everyone considers both of them very amiable. I also think that’s why Darcy finds Elizabeth’s bright eyes and teasing manner so irresistible. His verbal battles with her spark something in him he’s never felt before.

When I wrote Mr. Darcy’s Proposal, I wanted to show that as Darcy gets to know Elizabeth better, he begins to develop a more teasing and playful side. Immediately, I thought of my husband, who shares some of his personality traits. Like Darcy, my husband has a dry sense of humor, and he’s very literal. For example, if I say, “Pass the salt, please.” I might just get a handful of salt rather than the saltshaker. When I protest, he says, “But you said salt, not the salt shaker!”

Here’s a peek at a scene from the last chapter of Mr. Darcy’s Proposal that illustrates what I mean. It takes place when Mr. and Mrs. Darcy are alone, relaxing after a long, tiring day of dealing with family. They are in London and begin to talk about returning home to Pemberley.

“When we return home, I have a special present waiting for you,” he said, breaking the silence.
“You do? What is it?” she asked, sitting forward in her chair.
“I am not sure I should say. It might be better if you were surprised.”
“But, my love, if you did not want me to know, you should not have mentioned it at all,” said Elizabeth, her lips forming a sweet little pout.
“Perhaps I might be convinced to tell you,” he teased.
“You do know how relentless I can be once I make up my mind about something.”
“Very well, I will tell you if you come here,” he said, patting his knee.
She threw him a look, which he answered by patting his knee again. Elizabeth sighed, knowing that the only way she would get more information was to cooperate. Of course, sitting on his lap was really no hardship to her. When he pulled her closer, she laid her head on his shoulder. Darcy kissed the top of her head and then began working his way down her neck tantalizing her with more sweet gentle kisses in all the places he knew would increase her pleasure. Elizabeth could feel the heat building inside her.
As she began to relax, he started to pull at the ribbons on her dressing gown. At first, her mind was occupied with the sensations his kisses were invoking in her. Then suddenly, she realized what he was doing and she tried to sit up.
“Wait just a moment. You promised to tell me about my present if I came over and joined you,” she protested.
“Yes, but I did not say when I would tell you.”
As Elizabeth tried to push herself away in protest, he held her all the more tightly to him. “You are a most infuriating man!” 

Sigh! Darcy is definitely complicated, but that’s part of what makes him so fascinating and irresistible. Our desire to know more about him draws us in and keeps us coming back to read Pride and Prejudice over and over. I’m sure it’s also why so many people enjoy the P&P sequels, prequels, variations, and mash-ups. Personally, I love to write about Darcy and Elizabeth because it allows me to spend more time with them. What could be better than that for a Darcyholic!

 Thank you, Barbara, for inviting me to join you at Darcyholic Diversions. I always love talking about Mr. Darcy! Please visit me at my website: www.austen-whatif-stories.com. As part of Austen Authors, a group of authors who write Jane Austen-related stories, you’ll often find me blogging at www.austenauthors.net. Follow me on Twitter: @SusanMasonMilks




Monday, April 16, 2012

10,000 Visitors in less than 3 months!

Darcyholic Diversions Surpassed
10,000 visitors today!
 Less Than 3 Months After the First Post!
Thanks to all of you who have been a part of it!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Regina Jeffers: The First Time Mr. Darcy Spoke To Me

Welcome Regina Jeffers--Post and Give Away!
Hi, Darcyholics!  I am blessed to be able to have Regina Jeffers with us here at Darcyholic Diversions today, and to be a part of her 'Blog Tour' for The Disappearance of Georgiana Darcy. To be honest, I was a bit intimated to ask her to post here originally as I have so many of her books on my shelf.  What a delight it has been to discover that she is a warm and genuine Southerner at heart.  I know that I will continue to be blessed to have her in my life. 

In addition, I am honored to be a part of the 'Authors in Bloom' Blog Tour.  I invite you to read MY post 'Take That Leap of Faith'.  There are 70 other blogs that are a part of the give- aways.  All links are available on the left side of this blog. For instructions on how to win the Grand Prize, see my blog post.
 
Upcoming Guest Posts Are As Follows:
April 10--Bonnie Carlsen
April 13--Regina Jeffers
April 17--Elizabeth Ashton
April 20--Susan Mason-Milks
April 24--Lynn Robson
April 27--Veronica (Dark Jane Austen Book Club)
May 1--Matt Duffy
May 4--Susan Adriani
May 8--Annette W.
May 11--Beth Massey
May 15--Erlynn K.
May 18--Rebecca T.
May 22--Candy M. (So Little Time...)
May 25--Karen Cox
May 29--Jan Ashe
June 1--Kara Louise
June 5--Sharon Lathan
June 8--Gayle Mills
June 12--Shannon Winslow
June 15--Karen Wasylowski
June 19--Krista Bagley
June 22--Stephanie Hamm
And Many more to come!
&*&*&*&*&*&

Comments on Regina’s post will be entered to win a copy of her most recent book, The Disappearance of Georgiana Darcy.  Ms. Jeffers is opening that contest to include International winners.   Entries will be based on comments on blog posts; but additional chances will be given for joining this site, tweeting this post, Joining this site as a member!, sharing this on Facebook or your blog, Friend me on Facebook, clicking 'like’ on Barbara Tiller Cole, Author's Facebook page, Join Darcyholic Diversions Facebook Page or following BarbTCole on Twitter.


The First Time Mr. Darcy Spoke to Me
When I was twelve, I read Pride and Prejudice for the first time. My mother, may she rest in peace, was a great reader, and like the character of Marti in Love Comes Softly, Peggie Jeffers was a firm believer that books held great adventures. Because of her model, I have always read voraciously. Therefore, Pride and Prejudice was just the latest in a long line of classic novels in my reading repertoire. Or so I thought at the time. Little did I know that this novel would speak to me of how personal conduct can be seen as a bridge between private moral order and social order.

As a girl, head and shoulders taller than many of the boys in her junior high, I discovered a time when women were prided on their sense and men on their reasoning abilities. As I devoured each page, Mr. Darcy spoke to me.

He said,

“I cannot comprehend the neglect of a family library in such days as these.” (I totally agreed with this idea. I have on more than one occasion said that I could live in a library or a bookstore and never feel the want of anything more than food and water and the occasional ray of sunshine.)

“Your list of the common extent of accomplishments has too much truth. The word is applied to many a woman who deserves it not otherwise than by netting a purse or covering a screen; but I am very far from agreeing with you in your estimation of ladies in general. I cannot boast of knowing more than half a dozen, in the whole range of my acquaintance, that are really accomplished.” (I admit to having no artistic inclinations. If Mr. Darcy detested those who feign artistic skills when none exist, he and I would do well together.)

“And to all this she must yet add something more substantial in the improvement of her mind by extensive reading.” (Caroline Bingley had described a woman who could sing well, who walked with grace, and who spoke with elegance. I did none of those. I was a gangly seventh grader, but I was a READER. Mr. Darcy recognized my great advantage.)

“There is a meanness in all the arts which ladies sometimes condescend to employ for captivation. Whatever bears affinity to cunning is despicable.” (Woohoo! At last, a man who did not fall for a woman who batted her eyes and spoke in a syrupy tone. At age 12, I had had my heart broken several times because some idiot could not discern my true worth.)

Miss Bingley said, “I can guess the subject of your reverie.” To which, Mr. Darcy says, “I should imagine not.” (My goodness! I do so love the man’s tongue-in-cheek attitude. I often cannot resist delivering a deadpan response to someone who does not see what I do.)

“This is no very striking resemblance of your own character, I am sure. How near it may be to mine, I cannot pretend to say. You think it a faithful portrait, undoubtedly.” (Good! The man is no namby-pamby. He can be a bit testy when someone pushes him. That means he will forgive my sometimes very snarky remarks.)

“I have no such pretension. I have faults enough, but they are not, I hope of understanding. My temper I dare not vouch for. It is, I believe too little yielding; certainly too little for the convenience of the world. I cannot forget the follies and vices of others so soon as I ought, nor their offenses against myself. My feelings are not puffed about with every attempt to move them. My temper would perhaps be called resentful. My good opinion once lost is lost forever.” (I am from West Virginia. Did you ever hear of the Hatfields and the McCoys? Resentful natures are part of the makeup. LOL!!!)

“A man who felt less might.” (Enough said! Mr. Darcy’s passions run deep.)

“What do I not owe you! You taught me a lesson hard indeed at first, but most advantageous. By you I was properly humbled. I came to you without a doubt of my reception. You showed me how insufficient were all my pretensions to please a woman worthy of being pleased.” (Mr. Darcy would not permit his pride to stand in the way of finding true love. *Sighs Deeply*)

“If you will thank me, let it be for yourself alone. That the wish of giving happiness to you might add force to the other inducements, which led me on I shall not attempt to deny. But your family owes me nothing. Much as I respect them, I believe I thought only of you.” (AT LAST!!!! Although it was fiction that I read, I bought into the idea that a man would put the woman he loved first.)

“When I wrote that letter, I believed myself perfectly calm and cool; but I am since convinced that it was written in a dreadful bitterness of spirit.” (I have always been of the persuasion that placing one’s angry thoughts on paper is very therapeutic. I have also written more than one letter that I thought to be reasonable, but later realized they oozed contempt.)

And so my list could go on and on. Pride and Prejudice and Mr. Darcy has been a part of my psyche for over fifty years. I hear the story’s lines in my head when I discuss politics or religion or romance. So, tell me, dear Readers. When has Mr. Darcy spoken to you?
Book Blurb:

Shackled in the dungeon of a macabre castle with no recollection of her past, a young woman finds herself falling in love with her captor – the estate’s master. Yet, placing her trust in him before she regains her memory and unravels the castle’s wicked truths would be a catastrophe.

Far away at Pemberley, the Darcys happily gather to celebrate the marriage of Kitty Bennet. But a dark cloud sweeps through the festivities: Georgiana Darcy has disappeared without a trace. Upon receiving word of his sister’s likely demise, Darcy and wife, Elizabeth, set off across the English countryside, seeking answers in the unfamiliar and menacing Scottish moors.

How can Darcy keep his sister safe from the most sinister threat she has ever faced when he doesn’t even know if she’s alive? True to Austen’s style and rife with malicious villains, dramatic revelations and heroic gestures, this suspense-packed mystery places Darcy and Elizabeth in the most harrowing situation they have ever faced – finding Georgiana before it is too late.

Website – www.rjeffers.com
Twitter - @reginajeffers
Publisher – Ulysses Press http://ulyssespress.com/

Bio

Regina Jeffers, an English teacher for thirty-nine years, considers herself a Jane Austen enthusiast. She is the author of 13 novels, including Darcy’s Passions, Darcy’s Temptation, The Phantom of Pemberley, Christmas at Pemberley, The Scandal of Lady Eleanor, A Touch of Velvet, and A Touch of CashĂ©mere. A Time Warner Star Teacher and Martha Holden Jennings Scholar, as well as a Smithsonian presenter, Jeffers often serves as a media literacy consultant. She resides outside of Charlotte, NC, where she spends time teaching her new grandson the joys of being a child.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Journalist Becomes a Darcyholic School Teacher

Welcome Bonnie Carlson!

Hi, Darcyholics!  The world of Darcyholism has introduced me to many charming characters and helped me make many new friends.  Bonnie, I discovered on Twitter!  So how did a 'Beatrice' loving journalist become a school teacher indoctrinating the next generation into her Darcyholic ways?  Read today's post to find out why!

In addition, I am honored to be a part of the 'Authors in Bloom' Blog Tour.  I invite you to read MY post 'Take That Leap of Faith'.  For other blogs a part of the give aways see the links on the left side of my blog.
 
Upcoming Guest Posts Are As Follows:
April 10--Bonnie Carlsen
April 13--Regina Jeffers
April 17--Elizabeth Ashton
April 20--Susan Mason-Milks
April 24--Lynn Robson
April 27--Veronica (Dark Jane Austen Book Club)
May 1--Matt Duffy
May 4--Susan Adriani
May 8--Annette W.
May 11--Beth Massey
May 15--Erlynn K.
May 18--Rebecca T.
May 22--Candy M. (So Little Time...)
May 25--Karen Cox
May 29--Jan Ashe
June 1--Kara Louise
June 5--Sharon Lathan
June 8--Gayle Mills
June 12--Shannon Winslow
June 15--Karen Wasylowski
June 19--Krista Bagley
June 22--Stephanie Hamm
And Many more to come!
&*&*&*&*&*&

Comments on Bonnie’s post will be entered into our April monthly drawings.   Entries will be based on comments on blog posts; but additional chances will be given for joining this site, tweeting this post, Joining this site as a member!, sharing this on Facebook or your blog, Friend me on Facebook, clicking 'like’ on Barbara Tiller Cole, Author's Facebook page, Join Darcyholic Diversions Facebook Page or following BarbTCole on Twitter.

 Journalist Becomes a Darcyholic School Teacher


Pride And Prejudice.  Every time I hear those words I am overcome with the same feeling of delight I experienced the first time I read the book.  I swoon over Darcy and relish Elizabeth’s witticisms, laugh at Mr. Bennet’s sarcasm and groan over Mrs. Bennet’s nonsensical rants. I even named my favorite pomeranian Mr. Darcy despite the fact that he was obviously a Bingley. And as a lover of irony, I have to appreciate that my own pride and prejudice for years kept me from enjoying Jane Austen’s masterpiece. 

You see, when I was a teenager it was my sister’s favorite book.  Although only 13 months separated us, we did not then share a relationship anything like that of Jane and Elizabeth. Always competitive, we were eager to establish our characters as very much distinct from one another.  If she liked P&P, it obviously was not for me!  Thus, like Caroline Bingley, I pursued a course that hurt no one but myself by carefully avoiding Jane Austen.

 When my sister was 15 her heroine and role model was Elizabeth Bennet.  Mine was Beatrice from Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.  While my sister basked in the admiration and adoration of teenage boys, I scared them senseless. 

For another 15 years I avoided Austen, finally breaking down and reading P&P in 1995 when I saw an advertisement for the BBC/A&E mini-series.  Needless to say, the combination of reading the book and watching what I still considered the quintessential film version of P&P had me hooked.

In quick succession I read each of her novels, then her letters, then her juvenilia, followed by every biography I could find and every non-fiction volume available that covered Regency England.  I now have a collection that takes up several bookcases in my home and includes multiple copies of Austen’s works as well as numerous biographies and scores of sequels and adaptations. I even have the Jane Austen action figure complete with writing desk and her very own miniature copy of P&P.

 Countless times I have returned to her stories, but P&P with its feisty heroine and stoic hero remains by far my favorite. Darcy never loses his appeal nor does the clever irony lose any of its brilliance.

When I left my career as a journalist to teach high school English, I decided my students should not wait until the ripe old age of 30 to enjoy Austen’s irony and rich characters. It has become such a stock part of my curriculum that I have students at the younger grade levels come to me saying they can’t wait to be in my class and read Pride And Prejudice.
 
 Meanwhile, age and wisdom have worn the edges of the Beatrice-like wit I honed since high school, and I find myself more and more resembling her more mellow literary counterpart, Elizabeth Bennet.  If only I’d known then what I know now, many a high school boy would have left their teen years behind unscathed by the rapier wit and ridicule of Beatrice, and I may have found my Darcy much sooner!