Thursday, September 29, 2011

Update on Mr. Darcy's Bite

The e-book of Mr. Darcy's Bite is fine. There never was a problem with it. This was a printing mistake, and Sourcebooks is checking their inventory to see if more than one box of 20 books was affected. They are really doing a thorough check which is best for everyone. I will let you know as soon as I find out anything. Thank you for your patience. Mary

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Two Reviews from My Little Corner of the World

One of the nicest things about writing books is that you get to meet nice people from around the globe, and many of them write blogs. Erlynn has posted reviews for The Perfect Bride for Mr. Darcy and Searching for Pemberley on her blog, My Little Corner of the World,  I really appreciate this because these are two of my older titles, and they don't get as much attention. I hope you will visit Erlynn's blog, and please leave a comment. Thank you.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Two Inches of Ivory - Miniature Portrait Painting in the Regency Era

National Portrait Gallery
The following is a combination of two articles Tony Grant wrote on his blog, London Calling, about painting on ivory. He has kindly agreed to share them with my readers.

This particular drawing of Jane Austen was done on paper, but it serves a similar purpose to those done on ivory that Jane references:

Jane wrote to her nephew, James Edward Austen, on 16 December 1816. She congratulated him on leaving Winchester College and commiserated with him about his time there. Jane writes to him in terms as an equal in novel writing.

“Uncle Henry writes very superior sermons. You and I must try and get hold of one or two and put them into our novels.”

Then she explains the difference between their writing: Uncle Henry's is “strong, manly, spirited-- Sketches full of Variety and Glow.” Hers is comparable to a “little bit (two inches wide) of ivory on which I work with so fine a brush, as produces little effect after much labour?”

Ivory Tusk

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How My Grandson Got His Name

Today I am the featured blogger on Austen Authors. I am writing about my grandson, Skyler, and how he got his name. I hope you will click on the link and find out. To entice you, I'm posting pictures of the little dear. He's now crawling all over the place, pulling himself up on my couch, pulling down my tablecloth, pushing over my potted plant, teething on my coffee table, and locating every electric cord in the house. But how can you complain when the little guy is so obviously adorable?

Friday, September 16, 2011

Books on Sale - Anne Elliot and The Second Date & A Great Review

I am putting two of my titles on sale for e-books only for the remainder of September on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. The price for Anne Elliot, A New Beginning will now be $1.49, and The Second Date, Love Italian-American Style will be $.99. Anne Elliot is a parody of Jane Austen's Persuasion, while The Second Date is the story of love in the Italian-American community of North Jersey where I grew up. Many of the stories are true or partially true or as I prefer to remember them. I hope you will take this opportunity to get acquainted with my non-Pride and Prejudice work.

Click on the pictures in the sidebar if you wish to order these books.

Also, please check out Kimberly's five-star review of A Walk in the Meadows at Rosings Park on her blog, Reflections of a Book Addict.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

A Balloon Tragedy - Part 3 of Balloonamania

de Rozier
The first balloon crossing of the English Channel was met with cheers from enthusiastic bystanders. Unfortunately, Blanchard and Jeffries's success was followed by a horrible tragedy.

On June 15, 1785, Pilatre de Rozier attempted to fly across the Channel in the opposite direction, from Boulogne to Dover, possibly to prove that England could be invaded from the air.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mrs. Sage and Balloonist Lunardi - Part 2 of Balloonamania

After Blanchard and Jeffries’ first successful cross-channel balloon flight, there was Mrs. Sage, an actress famed for her full figure, who became the “first aerial female” in June 1785.

“The launch was made from Hyde Park and was attended by a huge and raucous crowd. Mrs. Sage, in a low-cut silk dress presumably designed to reduce wind resistance, was to be accompanied by Vincent Lunardi [a famed balloonist]… In his haste to depart, Lunardi failed to do up the lacings of the gondola’s door. As the balloon sailed away over Piccadilly, the crowd was treated to the provoking sight of the beautiful Mrs. Sage on all fours in the open entrance of the gondola. The crowd assumed that she had fainted and was perhaps receiving some kind of intimate first aid from Mr. Biggin. In fact she was coolly re-threading the lacings to make the gondola safe again… In due course the two of them were lunching peacefully off sparkling Italian wine and cold chicken, occasionally calling to people below through a speaking trumpet.”

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

First Balloon Crossing of the English Channel - Part 1 of Balloonamania

On January 7, 1785, the first cross-channel crossing by balloon took place between England and France. The balloon carried Frenchman Jean-Pierre Blanchard and American physician, Dr. John Jeffries, who had served as a military surgeon on the British side in the American Revolution.

On that winter’s morning, the two aeronauts (a newly coined term for the balloon age) lifted off from the top of Dover cliff to attempt the first ever Channel crossing. As they began to drift toward Calais, they steadily lost height over the water. “By two-thirds of the way across they had progressively jettisoned all the sand ballast, all their food, and most of their technical equipment, except the precious barometer and one bottle of brandy. But the balloon continued to drop, until it was well below the level of the approaching cliffs of the Pas de Calais. They now began to perform an aerial striptease.”*

Monday, September 12, 2011

New Kids on the Block - Austen Bloggers

One of the biggest advantages of writing Jane Austen re-imaginings is that I have met people from all over the world who are Austen admirers. Their love of Austen takes many forms, such as sewing Regency Era clothes or learning Regency Era dances, but several have chosen to set up blogs to review books. There are many bloggers who have been at it for a while, such as Austenprose, My Jane Austen Book Club, and Austenesque Reviews. But there are four new kids on the block, and I would like to introduce them to you.

The Secret Dreamworld of a Jane Austen Fan
My Little Corner of the World (not exclusively Austen)
So Little Time... (arts and crafts as well)
My Love for Jane Austen

If you are a fan of Austen adaptations, you will want to visit Jenny Allworthy's blog, The Jane Austen Film Club. There is also an all-Jane newspaper published by Maria Grazia, The Everything Austen Daily, that is chock full of interesting news about Austen world.

I hope you will check out these blogs. Tell them Mary sent you.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A Few Things

Fitzwilliam Darcy, Rock StarHeather Rigaud is having a giveaway of three copies of her book, Fitzwilliam Darcy Rock Star, at Austen Authors.

Austen Authors' celebration of our first-year anniversary continues through September 10. Lots of chances to win cool prizes.

Today is the last day for a chance to win Darcy on the Hudson. Please read my post for details.

Thanks, everyone.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Anniversary Special - Day 2 at Austen Authors

Today, Austen Authors share where they were when they got "the call" from Sharon to join Austen Authors. Here is mine:

When Sharon called with the invitation to join Austen Authors, I was a finalist on The Next Food Network Star. When my cell phone went off, I was filleting a salmon to be served with crème fraiche sauce on shallot toast. Because it was the ring tone I use only for emergencies (The Beatles “Help”), I knew that I had to take the call. I held up my hand, indicating to the judges and the audience that something more important than a shot at having my own cooking show might be in the offing. I was right! That day I became an Austen Author.

Mosey on over to Austen Authors  to read more. Have fun.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Let the Games Begin

Please join us today at Austen Authors for the kickoff of our anniversary celebration. What's up today?

Do you have any questions you would like to ask me or another Austen Author? You can do that, and you will be entered in a prize drawing.

Who wrote it? Connect the author to their story, and you are entered in a prize drawing.

There's also a game for i-Pad and i-phone owners.

It's going to be so much fun. Please join us.