Wednesday, November 3, 2010


I should be working on NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) or editing my manuscript, so obviously here I am posting to my blog.

Not that a post isn’t long overdue. I don’t even want to look to see when my last post was. If it’s any consolation, it’s not that I forgot you, it’s just that this was the Autumn of Perpetual Busyness. If it makes you feel any better, sometime in the middle of September I made a new year’s resolution to blog more in 2011. This resolution has the benefit of not kicking in until January first, which was the only way I could justify such resolve with such a busy schedule.

Things are freeing up a bit now. I have NaNoWriMo, which I WILL blog about later, and Thanksgiving in November, and Christmas and book signings in December, all in addition to the usual requirements of work and family but still the remainder of the year does promise to be somewhat less hectic. Or at least I can hope.

One reason I was busy of late was that I recently attended the annual general meeting of JASNA, the Jane Austen Society of North America. JASNA is a delightful organization that brings together lovers of Jane Austen and her work, which really includes a vast variety of people. I mean, we have people from all faiths, and political backgrounds, those who love Jane as an authoress of great literature, and those who love her as the inspiration behind Clueless. Jane brings us all together. No matter how different you may be from the other conference attendees, you know for sure you have something in common. You have to love it.

Most of the AGM is dedicated to the study and discussion of Jane Austen and her writings. This year’s theme was Northanger Abby, and I got to attend sessions on such interesting topics as entailment, rules of the assembly, and the importance of Henry Tilney’s role as a clergyman. It always amazes me how many different insights scholars and fans have into Miss Austen’s work. It is nearly impossible to attend an AGM without learning something new. (Indeed, I wonder if Jane would not learn something new about her own work, were she to attend.)

In addition to the congenial gathering of people, and the informative talks and sessions, I also love the AGM for the ball which takes place on Saturday night. Many of the attendees dress up in Regency costumes, and we all dance English country dances (which makes us all feel as though we are Elizabeth Bennet, or Emma, or, I suppose, Mr. Darcy). The dances can get a bit chaotic, with so many novices dancing in one place, but everyone is there to have a good time, and that makes all the difference.

On Sunday morning, I was sad to see the AGM come to an end, but we got such exciting previews of future AGM’s that it was impossible to be entirely forlorn.

But, for now, I must turn my thoughts forward to the remainder of 2010. If I write 50,000 words this November (in a single, new, novel) I will continue my “winning” streak for the fifth year. So far I am on track. Then will come Christmas, then new years, then… gulp. But I am resolved not to abandon you for so long again. In the words of Jane Austen if "I am not at all in a humor for writing; I must write on till I am."

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