Collection of Short Stories inspired by the writings of Jane Austen.
virtually every other writer around, I chose not to take my short stories
off the air once I was able to have them bound together and offered for
sale. Much as I would love for everyone to buy a copy of my
collection of Austen-inspired stories, I want more that they are available
to be read regardless of the venue. So read them here, print them
and then read them, or buy a copy of the book. They are under
copyright protection, so I know they're safe.
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around the Moon
is one of the shortest stories in the collection and is a first-person
narrative by the daughter of Captain and Anne Eliot Wentworth.
Many find it hauntingly beautiful, many find it desperately sad, many
find it peaceful and reassuring. I loved writing it. I was
driving to work one morning and the opening line, "My father
watches the sky" popped into my head. By the time I had
finished my commute, I knew that I would be writing a Persuasion
story that night. I also remember how much fun I had researching
all the expressions that sailors use in predicting weather, starting
with the most familiar...red sky at morning, sailors take warning.
Austen characters we love to hate, this is one of my favorite stories
because it evokes such strong response from readers. It is a Pride
and Prejudice-inspired story, a sequel and prequel wrapped up
together, and Mrs. Bennet is the heroine! Again, the story began
with an opening line that demanded a story be written around it:
"My arms are empty."
again, this is one of my favorites because so many readers tell me that
they absolutely love seeing Fanny Price with an unambiguously happy future.
This story begins with the wedding of Fanny and her cousin, Edmund
Bertram, and goes gothic when Daphne du Maurier's Rebecca tries
to steal the scene. I loved writing it and researching flowers
that take awhile to bloom, but when they do, they do so
gloriously. My favorite Austen critics have written about how
Fanny is one of the most passionate of all Austen heroines, and I wanted
to find a story and symbolism that would capture that passion she hid so
well while under her Aunt Norris's thumb at Mansfield Park.
far the longest of the stories in this collection, this is a what-if Pride
and Prejudice-inspired story that is angst ridden and forces the
characters and the readers to address a moral dilemma that has no easy
answer. Most readers love this story, but a few are seriously
troubled by it. As a writer, I wrestled with the same question
that Darcy wrestles with--how can I rid myself of this obligation
without compromising my integrity. The story takes place twenty
years after Austen's P&P closes, and it was immensely satisfying to
write about a mature Elizabeth in middle age. The inspiration for
Colonel Fitzwilliam's burial place in this story was Princess
Diana's--her death, though it happened several years before I wrote this
story, was still fresh in my mind.
story was once described as the anti-Persuasion. I won't give away
the one-two punch at the end by telling you which Austen novel it's really
about, but suffice it to say, I always rather thought that Lady Russell
has gotten a bad rap all these years and that she may have had point
that Anne Eliot and Austen readers don't like to acknowledge.
Color of Love
thought about this story for years before I sat down to write it.
One of my brothers sent me an article about Synesthesia,
a neurologically based condition in which one sensory path is crossed
with another. There are many varieties of Synesthesia, and one
that I read about involved reading in color. I found in this a way
to explore Darcy's struggle to reconcile his love for Elizabeth Bennet
with his own sense of self and family. This story parallels the
action of Austen's Pride and Prejudice, but is told entirely from
Darcy's perspective as a synesthete.
last story I wrote for the collection and different from most of the
others in tone. This Persuasion story focuses on Captain
Wentworth as he approaches Kellynch Hall to visit his sister and her
husband. I was in a fanciful mood when I sat down to write this
story, and when I got to wondering just what those Fates who play with
our fate really look like and sound like pure fancy struck my pen.
That We Are English
Northanger Abbey/Henry Tilney story that explores how Henry felt knowing that
his father was entirely mistaken about Catherine Morland's family and
prospects. One of the threads that runs through most of my stories
is that the natural world can heal wounded spirits if you seek
solace and wisdom in it, and in this story that thread is given center
story was written as the dénouement for a longer work on Marianne
Dashwood, post Sense and Sensibility, but I came to love Gideon Hayes,
Jane Bennet's original suitor, so much that I had to share it in this
collection. Again, this story blends the magic inherent in
nature with a character's struggle to move forward, grow, and live and
love. I shamelessly borrowed the title from that cute Warren
Beatty movie from 1978.
what about Emma? Somehow Emma Woodhouse never really worked
her way into one of my short stories, so I ended up writing a contemporary
novel inspired by Emma...you can read it here: No
Runs, No Hits, No Errors. Isn't that just like Emma--she won't
settle for simply a short story. She insists on having her own