Tag Archives: The Muse Talketh

The Muse Talketh through the Alpha Smart

And it happened here:

All the necessities for smooching with the Muse in one little corner: comfy chair, Alpha Smart, cup of tea, research books! 🙂

This is the beginning (you might remember this bit from last year) (please ignore mirror image of top of my head after a writing session – I do terrible things to my hair when smooching with the Muse!):

Here we meet the hero for the very first time:

And here you can see the influence of the Manchester conference on the cultural production of disability which attended in January:

The hero’s dilemma (or, let’s say, the reason for his dilemma):

More smooching sessions to follow soon!

Falalala

Okay … *rubbing my hands* I’m ready to have some fun again in Regency England. But I can’t decide which book to write next. (“Argh! Argh! Argh!” she cried and ran around in circles, pulling her hair.) I’m in the mood to do something lighthearted (so no dark & gloomy paranormals for the time being), and I’ve got a choice of two stories: one is a straight historical (well, as straight as my historicals turn out to be, which isn’t too straight after all *g*) (you might have already read the beginning here), the other a time travel (with a hero who looks like Richard Armitage and a heroine who steals something from a museum) (at first I thought she would steal something from the V&A, then I decided I’d use the Pitt Rivers in Oxford after all – it’s so much stranger than the V&A!).
One heroine is still nameless, the other is called Gilly (short for Gillian, of course) (or perhaps for Gillianna?) and her hero is Richard *nudge nudge wink wink* Shirley, whose estate is called Brooksby Wirce. I haven’t decided yet whether to make him an earl or not (isn’t it nice to be able to decide things like that?). The other hero has an aunt who has travelled through exotic lands and wears big hats.
Hmmm …..

Enter Melodrama

When the Muse was on holiday, she befriended melodrama, it seems. Oh dearie, dearie me…

Her eyebrows lifted, a horribly familiar movement.

His stomach heaved. How should he concentrate on this inane conversation when everything about this situation was wrong? Wrong

… like a song out of tune …

Cold sweat formed on his brow as his mind’s eye conjured up a picture of her sitting at the piano. He could almost hear the music as her slender fingers danced over the keys, beckoning him, enticing him.

Hmmm.

Not goodz. Must try this again.

From Fiction to … eh … Fiction

The opening paragraph of the excerpt in the last post is closely modelled on the opening paragraph of the first chapter of Thackeray’s VANITY FAIR. There are also echoes of something else, but I’m not going to gell, because that would be spoiling the fun. *g* So for now, here’s what Mr. Thackeray had to say:

While the present century was in its teens, and on one sunshinymorning in June, there drove up to the great iron gate of MissPinkerton’s academy for young ladies, on Chiswick Mall, a largefamily coach, with two fat horses in blazing harness, driven by afat coachman in a three-cornered hat and wig, at the rate of fourmiles an hour. A black servant, who reposed on the box beside thefat coachman, uncurled his bandy legs as soon as the equipage drewup opposite Miss Pinkerton’s shining brass plate, and as he pulledthe bell at least a score of young heads were seen peering out ofthe narrow windows of the stately old brick house. Nay, the acuteobserver might have recognized the little red nose of good-naturedMiss Jemima Pinkerton herself, rising over some geranium pots in thewindow of that lady’s own drawing-room.

Miss Jemima is the nice younger sister of the nasty Miss Pinkerton, and I decided she should have a school of her own. Hence my Miss Pinkerton is Miss Jemima Pinkerton (not that she’ll have a big part in either story, but still!).

Psssst …

Do you wanna know a secret? Then come a little closer …

… closer …

*whispers* There it goes.

Spring 1817, somewhere north of the Tweed


When the century was still in its teens, and on one surprisingly sunshiny day in April, there drove up to rusty gate of Miss Pinkerton’s academy for young ladies, on Chiswick Lane, a large, battered coach, with two fat horses and a rotund coachman, his face mottled with hectic red. A scrawny youth, who sat on the box beside the rotund coachman, bit his nails, tugged at his sweaty hair, and scrambled down the box as soon as the coach drew up opposite Miss Pinkerton’s spotted brass plate. St. Cuthbert’s Academy for Young Ladies, it read with old-fashioned, un-neoclassical flourish. One corner was dented, and below the letters somebody had scratched a leering face. It might have been the depiction of a gargoyle, or perhaps the scratcher had simply not been used to working with brass. But the scrawny youth ignored these artistic endeavours altogether and instead pulled the bell, hard enough to make it bleat like a Doomsday trumpet. At the din, at least a score of young heads were seen peering out of the narrow windows of the once stately brick house.

Indeed, the bell sounded loud enough to be heard even in Miss Pinkerton’s private upstairs parlor, where she was presently entertaining two of her hopeful pupils with seed-cake and her usual parting speech. The latter typically covered topics such as The Evils Of The World Outside, Be True To Thyself, and Upholding the Spirit Of St. Cuthbert’s Even & Especially In Times Of Adversity (this part also involved a discourse on the importance of Carrying Your Needlework With You At All Times).

Hope you liked it. 🙂

P.S.: You can sort of tell that I taught Thackeray last summer. *g*