Music Monday: Coffee Shop Angel, Dean Brody

I know it is Halloween tomorrow, but at my house during writing hours, it’s Christmas — or just about Christmas. My story timeline is currently in early December, but Georgiana’s plans to give her brother a wonderful Christmas gift are well underway. So, as I have been transitioning from editing Becoming Entangled (which I just sent off to my first editor yay) to writing time, I have been indulging in a few Christmas songs, such as the one below, to help me shift mental gears.

DeanBrodyTV. “DEAN BRODY ‘COFFEE SHOP ANGEL.’” YouTube, YouTube, 11 Dec. 2012, www.youtube.com/watch?v=rinnHmkGJ_s.

While the music that plays while I write must be only instrumental, I find songs that have great lyrics — especially ones that tell a love story — to be very useful in getting my imagination working.  This song is one of those sorts of songs. It tells a sweet story, and, though it is a song by a Canadian country artist, it has a 1950s feel to it that, in my opinion, adds both to the enjoyment of listening and to the story itself. Without looking at the video, the words and music style create for me a great mental image of a couple in love and dancing in a darkened coffee shop with the chairs put up and the tables pushed back.

As I mentioned above Becoming Entangled is one step further down the publication trail. I have a sticky note marking November 21 as a tentative release day. It’s a fun story, and I am eager to share it with you all.

Of course, the fact that I have finished my first round of edits means my editing timeslot will be open for a few days. I haven’t decided yet if I will use that time to double up on my Christmas story, add to Confounding Caroline, begin another story starring Georgiana that will follow Becoming Entangled as a second sequel to Unravelling Mr. Darcy, or pick out one of my other many projects that are just waiting for attention. So many choices! 🙂 I’m thinking that I will likely put in extra time on Two Days before Christmas, but I am not making any promises. 🙂 I’ll have to let you know next week. For now, I will leave you with a sample from this week’s writing.

AN EXCERPT FROM Two Days before Christmas:

“Georgiana,” Darcy called as his sister passed the door to his study later that day. 

Georgiana took four more steps before stopping and abandoning her plan to ignore his summons.  There was no need to stir his ire any further; he was likely angry enough with her for her recent behaviour. She had not seen him scowl as much as he had during Caroline and Louisa’s call in a very long time. 

“You wished to see me?” she asked from the doorway. 

“Come in and sit down.”  He leaned back in his chair and waited for her to comply.  “Your behavior today was quite disturbing.” 

Georgiana bit her lower lip and lowered her gaze to her hands. 

“It is completely unacceptable for you to speak as you did — and in front of guests!” He rose and came to stand before her.  “It was disrespectful. I expect so much more from you.  Where have I erred?”

Georgiana peeked up at him.  He was propped against his desk with his arms folded across his chest, looking down at her with such a sad expression that it nearly destroyed her determination to press her point.  However, if she truly wished to see that heartbroken look in his eyes removed forever, she must not waiver.  Therefore, looking down once again at her hands, which were nervously twisting in her lap, she answered.  “Our parents, as well as you yourself, have taught me that a Darcy’s word is to be steadfast.  I am to consider promises carefully before I make them because a promise should not be broken save for the noblest of reasons.”

“This is true,” Darcy muttered.

Georgiana lifted her eyes to his.  “That is where you have erred. You promised Mr. Bingley that if he leased Netherfield, you would spend the autumn and most of the winter seeing that he had things well-in-hand before Easter, yet you have come home and refuse to return to Netherfield for who knows what reason.”  She lifted a brow.  “I truly do not believe it is to save him from a lady who is beneath him.”

“None of that explains your behaviour.” 

“No, it does not,” Georgiana agreed.  “But it is my answer to your question.  You have not erred with me. I know my behavior was wanting and drastically so.  However, it seemed the best way to capture your attention and get you to listen to me.”  She stood and placed her hands on his folded arms.  “You are my brother, and I love you with all my heart and hold you in the highest regard. You have cared well for me.  You have even saved me from certain ruin.  I wish to repay your kindness if only I knew how.”

He pulled his arms out from under her grasp and opened them wide to her in invitation.  Gladly she stepped into his embrace. 

“Let me love you,” she whispered. “Allow me to care for you and to point out your errors when I see them.  I am not the foolish girl I once was.”  She lay her head against his broad chest and listened to him pull in a deep breath and expel it in a whoosh. 

“We are all fools at times,” he murmured as he squeezed her tight. “If there was a way for you to assist me with my current dilemma, I would gladly seek your help, but I fear there is not.” 

“You will not keep your promise to Bingley?” she asked quietly.

He sighed.  “Your point was valid. I shall consider it.” 

“Are you still leaving?”

His grip on her tightened.  “I do not know.  I long to leave, to be far away from…” his voice trailed off and the room was silent for half a minute.  “I will consider staying, but I cannot promise beyond that.” 

“I am sorry,” she said.

“You are forgiven,” he replied. 

She shook her head as he released her. “Not just for my behaviour.” 

“Then what?” he asked as she moved toward the door. 

“That I could not save your heart from breaking.” She smiled a sad, knowing smile at him as she said the words that he had repeated to her over and over again after her ordeal with Wickham.  He stood quietly, looking at her as if he was uncertain if he should acknowledge that what she had said was true or false.  “It is in your eyes, Fitzwilliam. Your heartache is in your eyes,” she whispered and took her leave.

~*~*~

Leenie B Books

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Music Monday: Moonlight Sonata, Dan Gibson [Beethoven]

Below is a piece of music that Georgiana might have had in her music room since Ludwig van Beethoven completed Moonlight Sonata in 1801.  This version of that sonata happened to be included on a CD that I picked up recently at a thrift store and has been playing in the background during part of my writing time this past week.

Phyllo GP. “Moonlight Sonata – Dan Gibson [Beethoven].” YouTube, YouTube, 14 Sept. 2012, youtu.be/FIVn7hmnfmc.

While my blog might have sat idle this past week, my fingers have not. I had a great week of writing, even after taking time off for Thanksgiving.  There are perhaps a few projects that are not as far along as I would like them to be, but the short pause was refreshing.  As of today, the blog is returning to its regular posting schedule, and, as promised, a new story, Confounding Caroline, will begin posting this Thursday.

If you look in the Thursday’s Three Hundred section, you will see that it is currently empty.  That is because I have removed With the Colonel’s Help as I move down my publication checklist and get the book ready for release in just a couple of weeks.  I had hoped to get a short preorder set up, but it’s not looking promising.  However, the publication date of October 26 for the ebook version looks to be on schedule with the print version to follow shortly thereafter.

I was also able to complete the first draft of Becoming Entangled, the sequel to Unravelling Mr. Darcy.  I will share an excerpt from that below.  I expect this story to be published by the end of November — maybe in time for American Thanksgiving. We shall see.

I have started a brand new story called Two Days before Christmas, which features a spunky Georgiana whose Christmas wish is to see her brother happy even if it means doing some meddling. I am just a few thousand words into that one and would like one more week with it before sharing any excerpts. Of course, that means you will get a peek at that next Monday.

But for now, here is

AN EXCERPT from Becoming Entangled: 

[Warning: this piece is from near the end of the book. Therefore, read at your own risk.] Continue reading Music Monday: Moonlight Sonata, Dan Gibson [Beethoven]

Music Monday: New Day, David Garrett

This coming Saturday, October 7, 2017, I am going to do something I have not done in a long time. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I did this. Want to know what it is?  Hit play and while you listen to some lovely music accompanied by some beautiful pictures, I will tell you. 🙂

HelenaPrats. “New Day ~David Garrett~.” YouTube, YouTube, 28 July 2011.

I am going to take a day off from creating blog posts. I am not going to do extra posts this week to make up for it. I am actually going to let my blog sit idle for a week.  As I write this, a little voice questions my ability to follow through, but I am determined.  With the Colonel’s Help, the current Thursday Three Hundred story ends this week, so this is a natural time to hit pause for a day — or part of one. I feel a need to recharge. I’ve felt it for a while, so I am going to listen for once. 🙂

But don’t worry, even if the blog is idle next week, I won’t be.  I will be writing and editing.

I have set a tentative release day of October 26, 2017, for With the Colonel’s Help.  I will finish first round edits today or tomorrow, and it will begin its journey through the rest of the editorial process. Fingers crossed that there will be a short preorder for this one.

I am just a little over a third of the way through Becoming Entangled. I hope to have that book ready for you by the end of November, and then, I would like to (maybe) do a Christmas short story.  So there is plenty for me to be writing during the blogs downtime.  🙂

I have just started tangling things up in Becoming Entangled this week and attempting to sort out how I want to present Anne.  Currently, she is naive as well as sly.  She is young for her age — likely due to her mother’s constraints, under which Anne is chafing and is rather desperate to leave behind.  Will she do it in a good way or will she make a muddle of things and end up worse than she considers herself to be at present?  I am not one hundred percent certain of that answer yet as my brain has been toying with shaking up what I had planned.  I suppose with another couple of weeks of writing, I will know. 🙂

You may read a little about her below in the excerpt if you wish and let me know what you think. This is a first draft, so it is written in wet cement not set in stone at this point. 🙂 Remember, if you choose to read the excerpt, it may contain spoilers, so read at your own risk. 🙂

AN EXCERPT from Becoming Entangled Continue reading Music Monday: New Day, David Garrett

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