Music Monday: Enchanted ~ Period Drama Montage

Today, along with writing news and a writing excerpt, I thought I would share this fan video that YouTube was so kind as to suggest that I needed to view. :) I think it is very well done —

SpellboundStudios. “Enchanted ~ Period Drama Montage.” YouTube. YouTube, 31 July 2012. Web. 22 Apr. 2017.

— and I enjoyed the song, so I added this video to my Music Meets Movies playlist. I’m up to 72 videos on that list now. It’s a great place to take a short break between writing projects. And this was a week full of projects.  Let me list a few of them for you.

  • Tuesday was the official release day for Discovering Mr. Darcy on all retailers. It was a good launch with the book ranking fairly high in some of its categories, and it already has 7 reviews the last time I looked.  Thank you to all who purchased and to those who reviewed as well.
  • The print copy of that book finally came and, after a slight tweak, it was approved and is now available for purchase.
  • Because of the way the epilogue flows from Discovering Mr. Darcy to Not An Heiress, I wanted to have Not an Heiress available for people to preorder when they finished reading Discovering Mr. Darcy.  That meant getting a file transferred into the proper format, writing a book description, filling in all the information required on all my retailers, and setting a date.  As it is booked right now, Not an Heiress will release on June 20, 2017.  This is the first time I have placed a book on preorder before it has entered the final stages of editing, so I will admit to being a bit nervous. However, I believe, I have set aside enough time to complete all the editing that needs to be done before the deadline for the final manuscript upload. In fact, I should have first round edits completed by the end of this week.
  • I mainly focused on With the Colonel’s Help during my writing hours this past week, but I did write a few words that are the beginning of what I am planning to make a short story to go with At All Costs, although I have this sneaking suspicion it could end up being a bit longer than a short story. :)  Oh, and At All Costs has been sent to my final editor for reading. That story will be available May 18, 2017 (hopefully 😉 ).

So, as you can see, this was a busy week of varied activities, which meant lots of opportunities to watch Music Meets Movies videos as I transitioned from one activity to another. :)

Now, to chose a bit of the writing that I did this last week.  While I managed to add around four thousand words to With the Colonel’s Help, I think I will give you a peek at those first 700+ words from the rough draft of the story about Caroline, which has no title as of yet. Be prepared for a surprising Mr. Hurst in this scene.

EXCERPT FROM Caroline’s Tale:  Continue reading Music Monday: Enchanted ~ Period Drama Montage

Music Monday: Let Her Go, Passenger/Break of Reality

Today, along with some writing news and a short story excerpt, I have the same song two times for you.  The first video is an instrumental cover of Passenger’s “Let Her Go” by Break of Reality. This video is on my writing playlist (no lyrics means it can play while I write).

Break of Reality. “Let Her Go – Passenger Cello Cover by Break of Reality.” YouTube. YouTube, 13 May 2014. Web. 15 Apr. 2017.

The second video (below) is a lyrics video that someone created. I thought I would share that one for those who might be curious as to what the words to the song are. It’s not a happy song, but I have not been writing happy stuff this week (see excerpt), so it fits.

Marcohordijk. “Passenger – Let Her Go (Lyrics).” YouTube. YouTube, 15 Dec. 2012. Web. 15 Apr. 2017.

So what have I been doing this week in my writing life?

  • I was worked on getting the print version of Discovering Mr. Darcy ready.  That was not easily done as my computer did not wish to play nice with CreateSpace for a couple of days, and then, I forgot to change the font colour on the spine and didn’t notice until I got the digital proof back. That has been fixed, and I finally have a print proof on its way for approval. They say that I should have it by April 25th.  I am hoping I have it sooner. 😉

 

  • I finished Not An Heiress — the epilogue is done! And it was fun writing a little bit about the Darcy and Fitzwilliam children. :)  And I began first round edits on the story in preparation for June publication. Although this story will not be ready to release for a couple of months, I am hoping to have a preorder up for it by Tuesday, so that when readers finish DMD, they can order NAH and be ready to continue the story that the epilogue of DMD hints at.

 

  • I returned to writing With the Colonel’s Help just in time for the story to take a sad, angsty turn. As a result, writing times have been shorter and word counts have been less because I struggle with the emotions of writing things like this in large doses. I internalize the emotions — happy or sad — when writing and reading. I have needed a longer “decompression” time after those sections. The good news is I think the story should be through its darkest part very soon, and then I can get things set right. That should be easier (and faster) to write.

And now for…

A SHORT EXCERPT FROM With The Colonel’s HelpContinue reading Music Monday: Let Her Go, Passenger/Break of Reality

Music Monday: I Be U Be, High Valley

Happy Monday! Today, I decided to share a song because, well, it has just been stuck in my head a lot lately.  It is just one of those that sticks.  I love this group’s music. And even though this has a more traditional country sound to it, I like it, which is not always the case for me.  But then it has such fantastic lyrics which I am certain plays almost as big a part in my liking it as the rhythm and melody. Although I did not choose the song to have a connection to what I have been writing this week, I think I can make one.

Highvalleymusic. “High Valley – I Be U Be (Official Music Video).” YouTube. YouTube, 07 Apr. 2017. Web. 08 Apr. 2017.

This week, I reached what I think is the end of Not an Heiress.  It still needs an epilogue and would have one by now, but I ended up with a touch of the flu and had to take a day off from writing. (That was not easily done 😉 )

In this story, the hero, Richard, and the heroine, Mary, are really opposites when you consider them separately.  She is bent on propriety, and he is more willing to have some fun. However, they blend together into something unique and strong.  They have a passionate love that overcomes her propriety, and they both have a desire to help those who are less fortunate. And though, they, at first, think they cannot be together, it becomes obvious that their love is not going to just fade away and be replaced by another.  Thankfully, Lady Catherine guesses that they love each other and forces the issue, so the coming together of the two happens more rapidly than it would have otherwise.  And it is a sweet relationship that they have!  I can see Richard singing this song to Mary. It seems to echo what his thoughts of Mary are.

In addition to finishing the main portion of Not an Heiress, I also completed the line edits of Discovering Mr. Darcy.  And, just now, late on Sunday evening, I have just submitted my ebook files for review to all my retailers for a short preorder. The release day for the ebook book is April 18, 2017.  (Print will probably be about a week later.)

Tomorrow, it is my turn to post on Austen Authors, where I will be sharing an excerpt from Discovering Mr. Darcy and talking about short stories/novellas a bit. And there is a chance to win an ebook copy. I hope you drop by and say hi!

Before I post an excerpt of what I wrote this week, I thought I would share the cover images for Discovering Mr. Darcy and Not an Heiress.

DMD_Cover (1)NAH_cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

And now for a bit of what I wrote this week.  Remember, this is from the end of the book so it will contain spoilers. It is a bit shorter of an excerpt to hopefully avoid any major reveals. Read at your own risk. :)

EXCERPT FROM Not an Heiress:  Continue reading Music Monday: I Be U Be, High Valley

Music Meets Movies Monday: Elinor&Edward, It’s You

Today, we have a little twist to the Music Monday video selection.  This is the most recent addition to my Music Meets Movies playlist on YouTube.  I find this playlist to be a wonderful place to take a few minutes break before I begin writing or between writing activities such as switching from editing to writing.

Catchingraindrops24. “Elinor & Edward | It’s You.” YouTube. YouTube, 04 Oct. 2014. Web. 01 Apr. 2017.

I find listening to song lyrics is a great source of creative inspiration — especially when they are paired with lovely images from a favourite Jane Austen adaptation.  However, I can’t actually listen to music with words when I write because it is too distracting, so I leave them for those times when I’m not writing.

For the past three weeks, I have been trying out a new routine for my writing work time — breaking it into sections dedicated to various things that need doing. Two of those sections are editing and writing new things.  When I have to transition from editing to writing, I need to have something to calm the critical section of my brain and help me relax into the creative part of my brain.  Music works very well for this.

During my editing time slots this week, I was able to complete the first round of edits on At All Costs, and in one writing section, I wrote its epilogue.  That story has now been sent off to my first reader, and I am waiting to get her comments back before I will touch it again.  I will be putting Discovering Mr. Darcy in the editing time slot this next week as I got that manuscript back from my second reader.  Hopefully, I will have news about a preorder of that book by next Monday.

My writing time this week focused on Not An Heiress, the sequel to Discovering Mr. Darcy, and I managed to add about 8,000 words to it. I think I am on the downward side of the story hill and should have the story wrapped up in another week or a bit more.  And then it can slip into that editing slot. :)

Below is one day’s worth of words from my writing times this week, and, I think, the song above matches up pretty well with what has been happening in this section of the book. (I also happen to envision Mary as looking a lot like Elinor in this version of Sense and Sensibility.)

A Word of Warning:  I am at least halfway through this story, so, as always when we get to the second part of a story, this excerpt will contain spoilers. :)

EXCERPT FROM Not An Heiress: 
Continue reading Music Meets Movies Monday: Elinor&Edward, It’s You

Music Monday: The Northern Mist, Dan Gibson

Last Saturday, a friend and I visited a local thrift store. They were having a twenty percent off everything sale — how can you resist that!  As is my normal habit on entering a thrift store, I began my perusal of items with the books, DVDs, music CDs, and paintings. In other words, all the imagination inspiring treasures.

“Dan Gibson The Northern Mist.” YouTube. Ed. RELAX NATURE MUSIC -Emmaqui3♥. YouTube, 21 Aug. 2015. Web. 26 Mar. 2017.

I found two CDs of instrumental music. They have both found their way onto my mp3 player on my desk, and I have been listening to birds while writing every day this week.  The song in the video above is track two on Songbirds at Sunrise. In my opinion, which is the one that matters when the music is for my writing time 😉 , I think these songs are perfect for imagining a scene in a garden or meadow, and part of what I wrote did take place in a garden. However, only a small part. So, apparently, the music is equally as effective when plotting compromising scenes in libraries.  Sadly, I am only going to share the garden portion today.

The story I was focusing on writing this week is called Not an Heiress and is a sequel to the story Discovering Mr. Darcy — this story got its epilogue and has been sent off to my last editor.  It should be published sometime around the middle to latter part of April.

Other than writing just over 7,000 words on this new story, I also added close to 1,000 to With the Colonel’s Help and edited six chapters of At All Cost, which should be starting the editorial rounds by the beginning of April. Needless to say, it was a busy and tiring week, but it was also extremely enjoyable. I am quite excited about all four of the projects that demanded my attention this week.  So excited, that I have had trouble sleeping.  The good colonel has been assisting me with working out plot ideas when I should be sleeping.  I have asked him to wait until a more appropriate time of day, but it seems an impatient colonel outranks a mere authoress. :)

Now, shall we get on to the longish excerpt from Not an Heiress?  This sequel will focus on Colonel Fitzwilliam and Mary Bennet and will feature a compromise.  As you should all know by now if you have read my secondary character stories, don’t expect a completely typical Mary.  This Mary reads sermons and is rather serious, but she has a particular reason, at least when Richard is around, for reading this material. (Also, Lady Catherine in this story and in Discovering Mr. Darcy is also not typical — demanding and all, but not typical.  This is definitely Austen with a twist.)

EXCERPT FROM Not an Heiress: 
Continue reading Music Monday: The Northern Mist, Dan Gibson

Music Monday: My Heart’s in the Highlands, The Barra McNeils

Research and writing go hand in hand.  You read something that sparks an idea, and a story is born.  Or, you begin to write something and find you need to go in search of some details.  In the process, you can get lost for hours on interesting tangents, or you can stumble across exactly what you need in a relatively short amount of time.  Below is a song I stumbled across when I found I needed some details for my story on Friday evening.

Barramacneils. “My Heart’s in the Highlands.” YouTube. YouTube, 15 Mar. 2007. Web. 18 Mar. 2017.

I was working on With the Colonel’s Help.  In it, Darcy has loaned Elizabeth a book of poems written by William Wordsworth.  As my characters were settling in to ride to London, I decided it might be nice to have Darcy read to Elizabeth. But what was he going to read?

Thankfully, there are search engines to help with such issues.  I typed in my search phrase, pressed enter and ta-da! lots and lots of poems by Wordsworth. So, I picked “The Solitary Reaper”, read it, and liked it well enough to allow it to be what Darcy would read to Elizabeth.

But then Darcy had to ask what song the young lady in the poem might have been singing.

Oy! These characters! :)

So, it was off to do another search.

A random click of a mouse on a song title, “My Heart’s in the Highlands”, in a list of traditional Scottish songs brought me this bit of information:

Written by Burns in 1789 to a traditional Gaelic tune. Burns was a Lowland Scot from Ayrshire, but he toured in the Highlands for a month in 1787.

Ah, Robert Burns! Perfect.

Colonel Fitzwilliam, however, wished to sing the song.  Which brought me to another question: what does the song sound like when sung?

That required a trip to YouTube.

In the list of results, I noticed this one by The Barra McNeils. I knew that name and was familiar with their Celtic style of music. (They’re from Cape Breton.) So, I clicked play.

As you will see in the excerpt I have included below, the song goes well with the Wordsworth poem, and I have Colonel Fitzwilliam beginning to sing before asking Elizabeth to continue — so while you listen to the recording above, imagine the colonel starting the song with the chorus, and then Elizabeth picking it up on the verse and being joined by the others on the choruses.

I am including the words to the Robert Burns poem below so you can see the words that are being sung, and below that you will find the excerpt from this week’s writing session.

My Heart’s In The Highlands

Chorus:
My heart’s in the Highlands, my heart is not here,
My heart’s in the Highlands, a-chasing the deer;
Chasing the wild-deer, and following the roe –
My heart’s in the Highlands, wherever I go!

Farewell to the Highlands, farewell to the North,
The birth-place of Valour, the country of worth!
Wherever I wander, wherever I rove,
The hills of the Highlands for ever I love.

Chorus

Farewell to the mountains, high-cover’d with snow,
Farewell to the straths and green vallies below.
Farewell to the forests and wild-hanging woods,
Farewell to the torrents and loud-pouring floods!

Chorus

EXCERPT FROM With The Colonel’s Help Continue reading Music Monday: My Heart’s in the Highlands, The Barra McNeils

Music Monday: A Walk in the Forest, Brian Crain

I’m pulling out an old comfortable favourite for today’s post.  This song and others by this composer just have a way of wrapping me up in my imagination and tucking me away to find a good story.  So snuggle into the music, grab a cup of something warm and cozy, and let me tell you about what is happening in my writing world.

“A Walk in the Forest – Brian Crain.” YouTube. Ed. Connie K. YouTube, 28 Aug. 2009. Web. 11 Mar. 2017.

This was a busy week at my home.  March Break starts today, so there were lessons and test and essays that needed to be completed before the break.  There were also appointments and gym sessions — well, only one as it turned out. And in between and around those things, I had to fit in some writing work.  But, you know, that’s just how life is — busy and satisfying even when it get tiring and you just want a nap.  I cannot complain. My life is good.

Last week started with a Romance Writers of Atlantic Canada meeting and workshop where we discussed dialogue and fan fiction. I enjoy those craft sessions. It is good to stop and think about what we as writers are doing.

Then on Monday, I made certain my Austen Authors blog post was ready. Tomorrow, March 14, I will be sharing that Mansfield Park scene I mentioned writing a couple of weeks ago.  Be sure to stop by to have a read!

And then, I began on my list of writing projects.  Currently, I have three projects underway.

Discovering Mr. Darcy is nearly ready to send to my last editor before publication. I had hoped to have this story out this month, but it is looking more like it will be April before that will happen.  Right now, I am working on an epilogue at my first reader’s suggestion. However, my brain was a little short on creativity, so I have sought the excellent help of the members of Leenie’s Sweeties for ideas.  This week, I will sift through their suggestions and get that written.

I have begun first round edits on At All Costs.  I am through chapter 5, and I think, I may have begun posting this story on the forum at darcyandlizzy.com.  As I am writing this post on Saturday afternoon while my guys are all off at work, I have not yet begun posting it.  I assume I will get to that, but you know how life can be at times and what is planned is not what happens.  The chapters have not changed drastically from what has been posted here…a few more details have been given and more of the typos have been eliminated.

My third project is probably going to be the next Thursday’s Three Hundred story when At All Costs wraps up at the end of April.  It is called With the Colonel’s Help and is the story that I shared a portion of last week.  I have only gotten a bit further in that story. I am now on chapter 2 and only part way through it. It is a good think I have until the end of April to have it ready to being posting. :) However, even though I have not progressed as far as I would have liked to since last week.  I will share a bit of chapter 2 below.

EXCERPT FROM With the Colonel’s Help Continue reading Music Monday: A Walk in the Forest, Brian Crain