Jul 232018
 

Hello readers! I’m very excited to welcome back one of my long-time favorite authors, Karen M. Cox, to Austenesque Reviews today! If you are unfamiliar with the captivating novels by Karen Cox, her specialty is Austenesque retellings that take place in different time periods, and she is phenomenal at finding inventive ways to tie her story into the unique setting she chooses!

Karen is here to celebrate the re-release of one of my favorite books! Originally published as At the Edge of the Sea, Son of a Preacher Man has received a new title and new cover! And I hope many more Austenesque readers will be picking it up soon (if they haven’t already) because it truly is a sensational and moving story!

Hi Karen! I’m so excited to have you visit my blog and to have this opportunity to finally interview you! I cannot believe in all eight years of book reviews, blog tours, and author visits we’ve never done an interview together! I’ve got to make this is a good one (the pressure’s on!)

Thanks for inviting me, Meredith!

For my first question, I would like to learn a little about your approach to writing. What kind of aspects of your story do you plan in advance? Do your muse or characters ever take you in directions you’d not expect?

I guess you could call my approach to writing a “hybrid” approach—I’m neither a strict plotter nor a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants-er. Usually, I have an idea for setting, time period, characters. My natural inclination is to write character-driven stories, so any major plot points need some extra attention before I start. If the story is Austen-inspired, I puzzle out what things in my chosen setting fit well alongside the novel I’m working with. I also decide what character traits I want to bring forward; for example, when I wrote I Could Write a Book, I wanted to spotlight Emma’s love for her family and friends as motivation for her actions (even though she is sometimes misguided) and her sheltered life, based on the choices she made. Continue reading »

Jul 202018
 

Happy Friday, readers! I am so happy to welcome back author Lona Manning to Austenesque Reviews today! Lona was here last year to celebrate her first release – a Mansfield Park variation titled A Contrary WindWhich I loved (see here)! And now, today, a sequel to that variation is being released! (Woot woot!) Lona is here today to share an excerpt from her new release, A Marriage of Attachment!

This excerpt from A Marriage of Attachment features a flashback to a scene from Mansfield Park, as Edmund falls in love with Mary Crawford while walking through the grounds at Sotherton.

~~~

Edmund Bertram is the clergyman at Thornton Lacey, a village near Mansfield, in his parsonage-house.

Edmund dipped his quill in his ink, and paused, looking up from his blank sheet of paper to gaze out of the window. He recalled when Mary’s brother Henry suggested they build a garden “at what is now the back of the house; which will be giving it the best aspect in the world, sloping to the south-east. The ground seems precisely formed for it.” Henry used to pique himself on his abilities as a landscape designer, and the Crawfords and Bertrams once travelled together to the country home of his sister’s fiancé Mr. Rushworth, so Henry could advise on improvements to his grounds. The visit to the gardens of Sotherton turned out to be anything but innocent for all of the young people hovering on the brink of love or desire. Henry had flirted with Julia all the way there, and, once arrived, had transferred his attentions to Maria. And Mary had discovered that Edmund intended to be a clergyman. Her reaction to this news, ought to have taught Edmund to guard his heart from her. Instead, she had bewitched him. Continue reading »

Jul 162018
 

Happy Monday, readers! I am very excited to welcome author Rosalie Stanton to Austenesque Reviews today! While Rosalie has several books under her belt already, she published her first Pride and Prejudice inspired story a few months ago – A Higher Education. (Which I am currently devouring and reviewing later this week!) Since Rosalie was a new-to-me author I asked her to share a little about herself, her writing, and what inspired A Higher Education. I hope you enjoy learning about her as much as I did!!

I cut my writing teeth on fanfic.

That used to be something no serious author would admit. When I was writing it, it was that shameful, dirty secret I kept to myself. I’d be introduced to new friends as an “avid writer” by those who knew me, and while this was true, it often provoked the uncomfortable question: “What do you write?”

How, exactly, do you announce that you write Buffy fanfic? Specifically, Buffy fanfic in the Spuffy (Spike/Buffy) subfandom, and there is lots and lots of sex?

Answer: you don’t. You smile and say, “Paranormal. With vampires.”

When I say I cut my writing teeth on fanfic, I mean it. I’ve been a writer since I knew how to hold a pencil. In my youth, I’d steal scratchpads from my grandparents’ print shop and doodle flip-book-style stories. I filled countless spiral notebooks with longhand YA stories I was sure would actually be published one day. When my mother broke down and supplied our first computer—a piece of ancient alien technology that was ready to be put to pasture by the time it landed in our home—I taught myself how to type. I learned about spaces after periods. I wrote epic-long Star Wars stories (which I thought I could publish, because the EU was a thing). I wrote a combination of short horror stories, novel-length fantasy, and the occasional piece of lofty Mortal Kombat fanfic (Liu Kang/Kitana were my jam).

When I was fourteen, though, and after our dinosaur computer had been exchanged for something with internet capabilities, I discovered that people actually published stories set in established universes online. Continue reading »