Baja Janeite sent this in ages ago and I've been meaning to post it. How cool is this? The library in Temecula, California has a Jane Austen study group which meets from 10:30 - 12:30 on Wednesdays. Through May, they'll be discussing A Walk with Jane. More info here.
There's a lovely interview with Karen Joy Fowler, author of The Jane Austen Book Club, over at Tina Ann Forkner's blog. She actually even mentions A Walk with Jane. (!) I was absolutely gobsmacked and thrilled when Karen took time to read my manuscript and gave us an endorsement. I can't imagine how busy she is -- the fact that she was willing to do that -- and liked it!! -- just meant so much to me. What a gift.
Wonderful interview, and I can't wait to read her new book, Wit's End. She mentions T.H. White's Once and Future King -- that's one that's been on my list to read. Have you read it?
A few snippets:
Karen Joy Fowler: (on including Grigg in her book) Austen is one of our greatest writers. Why wouldn’t a man be interested
in reading her? This paradigm in which women read books by and about
men, but men refuse to read books by and about women irritates me. The
men I like best are not so narrow in their interests. The men I like
best are the ones I put in my books.
SPV: There are many movie versions of Jane
Austen’s novels. Do you think these are good substitutes for those who
don’t have time to read the novels?
Karen Joy Fowler:
The movies reduce the ways in which Austen can be understood, often
promoting the romance over all other aspects of the books. So no, there
are movie versions I quite like (and movie versions I quite loathe) but
Austen is, first and foremost, about voice and narration and these are
the things you immediately lose when you turn a book into a movie. I go
to all the movie versions myself, but they are no substitute for the
books, which make you feel as if you’ve spent some intimate time with
Austen herself. (. . .)
I heard last week from Blair Rogers, a descendant of Harris Bigg-Wither. (Harris was a close family friend of the Austens. He proposed one night when Jane and Cassandra were visiting. She accepted, then apparently stayed up much of the night reconsidering, and withdrew her consent in the morning.) Blair said...
Personally I'm very pleased that Jane Austen had second thoughts following the proposal in 1802. If she had gone through with it - I would not be here today.
Harris Bigg-Wither is my 4th Great Grandfather and despite being declined our family hold him with respectful thoughts.
I have to say, although this story fascinates me, I think both Jane and Harris would wonder about it being talked about so many years later.
Wanted to let you know about this event. If you're here in the DC area, I'd love to meet you.
What: Reading, signing and discussion
Where:Borders, Tysons Corner, VA The store is across Route
7 from the mall -- just west of the intersection of route 7 and 495.
They have a parking garage under the store and will validate parking.
When: Tuesday, November 13, 7:30 pm
Summary:A Walk with Jane Austen
traces my experiences following Austen's life through England, and
tells both her life story and a bit of my own, in addition to delving
into her Anglican faith. Of course, being about
Austen, there's a little romance -- but there are also some deep
thoughts on faith, friendship, family, and the meaning of life.
The contest will be open for two weeks, and it is simple: Just send me a
copy of your favorite icon of a Jane Austen movie hero or heroine. I
will choose the top icons, from which you will get to vote for your
favorite. Tell me the name of the actor or actress, and the movie. If
you did not create the icon, please include the attribution.