Recently, a few authors joined in a historical group to complain about the proliferation of Regency England dukes. Now why they did this wasn’t clear to me immediately…until they mentioned that authors could join their blog and discuss it. Clearly their aim was to shore up commentary for their blog. With tongue firmly planted in cheek, I wish to announce that all of the real Regency dukes are sadly no longer a part of our earthly presence. 😉
I will leave you with some interesting information about dukedoms. The first dukedom was created in 1337, when Edward III made his son the Black Prince of Cornwall. Not long afterward, the dukedome of Lancaster also merged with the throne. The title of duke is not indigenous in England. In the Roman Empire there had been the dux, a leader or general and derives from the French duc. The Norman Kings were Dukes of Normandy and Aquitaine in France. Here are the Dukes of England:
Norfolk (1483), Somerset (1547), Richmond (1675), Grafton (1675), Beaufort (1682) St. albans (1684), Bedford (1694), Devonshire (1694), Marlborough (1702_ Rutland (1703), Dukes of the United Kingdom Wellington (1814) during the Regency era.
Stay tuned for the next Dukedom blog entitled: Bright Sons of Sublime Prostitution! I’m not making this up – I swear!
While doing research for WHAT A DEVILISH DUKE DESIRES, I learned that dancing in Regency England was not just for fun. Courtships took place at balls and assemblies in Jane Austen’s time. Here are some fun facts about dancing and courtship in Regency England.
Dancing was an extremely important social accomplishment, and any gentleman with two left feet was sure to embarrass himself and others. It’s little wonder that the Bennet girls were horrified by their cousin’s bumbling on the dance floor.
Balls and assemblies were one of the few activities that men and women could enjoy together.
Learning to dance properly was de riguer and considered one of the genteel and polite accomplishments.
Fashionable schools sprang up to ensure ladies and gentlemen did not make a faux pas.
The wealthy such as lady Catherine de bourgh hired private dance masters.
A family like the Bennets might well have shared a dance master. Such a scheme made it more affordable and it also assured sufficient partners, which was necessary for teaching.
Interestingly, children as young as ten years were sometimes taken to balls, but their families made sure such children learned the right etiquette.
The Duchess of Devonshire organized morning classes so that young ladies who lived near Chatsworth could practice and master the dance steps.Now for your entertainment, here is a video of the Hampshire Regency dancers!
Since we have to wait until February 24, 2015 for WHAT A DEVILISH DUKE DESIRES, I thought you might enjoy an excerpt from Harry and Lucy’s book. Yes, Lucy is a new character, one you’ll meet soon. I love all of my characters, but Harry and Lucy touched me more than I could have imagined.
I”m so excited to share their story with you soon. There’s no better month than February for romance. I’ll keep you all posted on news about the book. Also if you haven’t signed up for my newsletter yet, you’ll find a link on the home page of my website. Also, you can always reach me by email: email@example.com.
If you’re new to my books, check out the printable book list and sign up for my newsletter to get even more exciting news!
At the recent RWA national conference, I joined my fellow historical writers Grace Burrowes, Katharine Ashe, Kieran Kramer and Tessa Dare on a panel called The Do Over. In this conference workshop, we spoke about lessons learned. I thought I would share my part of the workshop here with all of you.
When I began speaking, I gave advice to unpublished writers. The truth is it’s hard to keep your behind in the chair if you don’t have some sort of accountability. I suggested that they might commit to writing at least 100 words a day for 100 days. It may not be the best 100 words you’ll ever write, and you most certainly have to write far more than that once you’re published and on deadline. So what is the point of 100 words a day for 100 days? Habit. That’s right, you develop the habit of writing every day using this simple tool. I did this while writing my first book HOW TO MARRY A DUKE–and I sold it. Now on to the rest of my speech. ~
First, forget the regrets. What you need in this business is:
A healthy sense of humor
Fabulous writer friends who understand in a way non-writers can’t
A damn good agent
In the words of Eleanor Roosevelt: “You must do the things you think you cannot do.”
Promote your first book while packing for a move.
Write a book in six weeks.
Do 50 blog hop stops while on deadline. (Don’t ask.)
Finish a book at 4:30 AM & on the same day travel to a literacy event in another city.
Agree to teach a virtual class and somehow manage to check the ‘homework’ you assigned for all 600+ attendees.
Yes, all of the above really happened.
Laughter helps, but sometimes a hug is needed. Be there for your friends when the writing life gets tough. They will reciprocate.
The best advice I can give you is:
Kick fear to the curb. It is a writer’s greatest enemy.
Focus only on what you can control.
If something isn’t working, find a solution. If there isn’t one, move on.
Be kind to others and share.
Celebrate your friend’s good news, and she will do the same for you.
Ring your bell. Sung to Anita Ward’s famous disco song – “You can ring my beeeell-ring my bell.” In other words, you need to promote, and when you do, make sure your editor, agent, and publicist know about it. In marketing, perception is reality.
Finally, for your entertainment I present the Worst Review on the Planet. I happen to be the lucky recipient. I’ll paraphrase the rant since the ‘reviewer’ cursed in almost every sentence: “Woman, you need to stop writing, and stop writing now.” For the record, Goodreads declined to remove it because they didn’t want to censure the reviewer.