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Showing posts from October, 2010

Jane Austen's Fiction Manuscripts

Here are a couple of interesting links to news about Jane Austen on the net which discuss Jane's books being heavily edited and there is even a suggestion that she was a bad speller. How can they say such a thing?!

Here's one from the Guardian which does at least try to defend our Jane! There are also some interesting comments below the article where the general public have added their three penny worth!

If you'd like to judge for yourself, head on over to Jane Austen's Fiction Manuscripts where you can see some 1100 pages of fiction written in Jane's own hand. It is indeed wonderful to see that she too had messy jottings, which surely as a toiling writer is the only way to work. I have to say I find it extremely heartening to see that she didn't write it all down perfectly. Can you imagine how thrilled she would have been if she'd had access to our modern technology where it is so easy to delete mistakes and write new drafts, not to mention having built-in …

Jane Austen's House Museum - part two!

Recently Amanda Grange and I had a lovely day out at Jane Austen's House Museum - don't you think we look very much at home? Jane Austen moved to Chawton, a large cottage on her brother Edward's estate in July 1809. It was possibly a former coaching inn at one time and in Jane's day was a busier place as coaches rumbled past the windows day and night. One of Jane's nieces remembered how comforting it was 'to have the awful stillness of night frequently broken by the sound of many passing carriages, which seemed sometimes even to shake the bed' - perhaps not a sentiment that would be enjoyed by many today. Jane Austen looked forward to the move. After her father's death in Bath, their circumstances had been greatly reduced and eventually they had moved to Southampton to live with one of the sailor brothers. An opportunity for a home of their own for the Austen women was not a chance to be passed up, and Jane looked forward to buying a piano again instead…

A Day Out At Jane Austen's House Museum, Chawton

I had such a busy week last week packed full of exciting things. I have to tell you my life is usually a very ordinary one spent writing and looking after my family. But last week was full of magical days and even a larger than life evening or two. It started off when I met Monica Fairview and Victoria Connelly in London before we went off to a dinner given by our wonderful publisher Dominique Raccah of Sourcebooks.
I met Monica and Victoria in St. James's in the afternoon so we could have a wander round, soak up some Regency history, and look at the shops. You can see a photo of Monica and I standing with a statue of Beau Brummel in Jermyn Street at the end of the Piccadilly arcade. Further along is the wonderful Floris perfume shop which is celebrating its 280 year anniversary this year. There were some gorgeous examples of old perfume bottles and packaging displayed in the shop, and the very kind assistant told us that some of the popular perfumes of the day were Jasmine, Steph…

Regency Parade - Part Two!

I thought you might like to see some more of the photos from the Regency Promenade at the start of the Jane Austen Festival. The costumes were incredible! I can't make a mention of Bath without thinking of Northanger Abbey or Persuasion. So many of the girls looked as excited as Catherine Morland that I have to include this extract. This first photo shows a view of Great Pulteney Street where Catherine lodged with Mrs Allen. 

They arrived at Bath. Catherine was all eager delight — her eyes were here, there, everywhere, as they approached its fine and striking environs, and afterwards drove through those streets which conducted them to the hotel. She was come to be happy, and she felt happy already.

They were soon settled in comfortable lodgings in Pulteney Street.

...our heroine’s entree into life could not take place till after three or four days had been spent in learning what was mostly worn, and her chaperone was provided with a dress of the newest fashion. Catherine too made som…

A Regency Promenade in Bath at the Jane Austen Festival

I thought you might like to see some photos that were taken of the Jane Austen Festival in Bath. At the start of the festival there is a grand Regency parade where huge numbers of people turn out in their favourite period dress. There were some spectacular outfits, gorgeous bonnets and hats, not to mention accessories. I met fellow author Victoria Connelly at the Pump Rooms for the start of the parade, and it was also lovely to meet up with Isa from Malaga who often stops by to visit my blog. Poor Isa discovered she had mumps when she got home - I hope you're on the mend now!
What made it extra special was to see so many gentleman attired, and didn't they all look splendid! The promenaders take a tour through the town walking up Milsom Street, George Street, and onto Gay Street, which leads to the Circus, and the Royal Crescent beyond. If you'd like to see more photos and some more about my day with Victoria Connelly, head on over to Austen Authors.Here we are at the end of…