Today I have Sharon Lathan over for an interview and at the end you can win her new book, Miss Darcy Falls in Love.
Tell me 3 fun things about yourself.
I love to scrapbook. It began with creating a scrapbook for my newspaper articles and other author-related mementos. That grew into an obsession so that I now have tons of scrapbooking supplies. Then, just in the past few months I discovered digital scrapbooking and I have gone crazy!
I am an insane lover of Disneyland. Our whole family is. We hold annual passes and go to Disneyland at least 5 times a year. In fact, my daughter was proposed to in California Adventures! I can guarantee you that we will be heading there again for the Holiday Season.
I am an awesome Scrabble player. My sister and I have played endless games of Scrabble when together. Now I am addicted to Words With Friends (iPhone Scrabble) and have about 10+ games going on at all times. I can seriously kick bootie on WWF, so watch out! Wanna play?
Could you tell me about your new book, Miss Darcy Falls in Love?
I would love to! Let me start with the synopsis--
Noble young ladies were expected to play an instrument, but Georgiana Darcy is an accomplished musician who hungers to pursue her talents. She embarks upon a tour of Europe, ending in Paris where two very different men will ignite her heart in entirely different ways and begin a bitter rivalry to win her. But only one holds the key to her happiness.
Set in post-Napoleonic Empire France, Miss Darcy Falls in Love is a riveting love story that enters a world of passion where gentlemen know exactly how to please and a young woman learns to direct her destiny and understand her heart.
Georgiana’s novel is a fresh experience for me. Unlike the five novels of the Darcy Saga which are a continuous series, Miss Darcy Falls in Love has a distinct plot line with a full arc. It is completely independent novel with a single story that focuses only on Georgiana’s love triangle. For me that is unique and it was tremendous fun!
I wrote her story with music as the central theme. Not only in that she is a musician herself, as are both of the men who vie for her heart, but I carried the thematic elements into the names of each chapter and dividing the whole book into a sonata format. It was extremely important to me that music immersed the pages as thoroughly as possible so that readers would feel the importance of music to these characters as clearly as if the sounds were audible. Hopefully I accomplished that.
How has Georgiana matured and changed during these books?
Jane Austen tells us very little about Georgiana other than that she is shy and wounded from her experience with Mr. Wickham. I expanded on that gradually as the Saga advanced. Initially I was not sure how Georgiana would mature. Early on she was skittish, reserved, and endlessly shocked by Lizzy’s liveliness. Her blossoming was a natural result of time, exposure to new people as she traveled, and the friendships she made along the way. Mary and Kitty Bennet played a large part in Georgiana’s evolution. I saw the differing personalities of these three as a perfect blending with each of them learning from the other.
Georgiana surprised herself - and me - by discovering she loved to dance, could converse in a crowd easier than she imagined, and had the ability to flirt a bit. Then she set out on a tour of the Continent, even crossing the Alps! Quite the wild woman! Suffice to say, Georgiana at 20 is a very different person.
How many more books will there be in this Darcy series?
I am currently writing the saga of Dr. George Darcy. That novel, like Georgiana’s, will be a stand alone novel so perhaps not technically part of the series. However, there will be more overlap, especially toward the end when George is back in England for good. Although centered on George, readers will also meet James and Anne Darcy, the senior Mr. Darcy, and a young Fitzwilliam. So, okay, yeah, it is part of the series! After that I do not know. I will probably divert into writing some historical romance ideas I have, but it is too soon to tell.
Do you plan on writing more variations when this series is finished?
If by “variations” you refer to other Austen novels the answer is a strong NO. I have no desire to tackle the other Austen characters, for many reasons. The Darcys are different in that they have now moved far beyond where Austen left them. Their characters and lives are mine so I can comfortable carry on with them. Starting fresh with Anne Elliot and Capt. Wentworth or the Tilneys is a challenge I do not want to attempt.
Are there still characters from Pride and Prejudice that you would like to explore more?
Yes and no. I have a soft spot for Charlotte Collins and Caroline Bingley. I have often thought of delving into their lives a bit deeper. Maybe someday. I am also quite partial to the Darcy children I wrote. There is lots of fodder for stories with them!
And last, could you give any aspiring readers any advice when it comes to writing?
The best advice is to keep writing. “Practice,” as Lady Catherine would say! This is a crazy business and nothing is for sure except for one thing: If you don’t keep writing and striving to get your work noticed, you will get no where. Persevere, be strong, and keep writing!
Thank you so much for having me on your blog! I love interviews and hope your readers enjoy what I have to say AND are intrigued by the synopsis and excerpt! I’ll be popping in as ofter as I can throughout the day to answer any questions.
1 copy of Miss Darcy Falls in Love
1. US and Canada
2. Ends Nov 30
3. Just enter :) comment, ask a question or just say hi
“But the weather is glorious and perfect for shopping! How can you even think about staying home?”
“Staying inside, even on this glorious day, my dear Yvette, is a delightful thought. Yes, above shopping.”
Yvette and Zoë stared at Georgiana as if she had just proposed flying to the moon. “This is three days in a row,” Zoë declared. “Are you ill?”
“Have you and the baron suffered a spat? Is your heart now broken by him so soon after being broken by Monsieur Butler?” Yvette mourned, her frown of concern as overblown as Zoë’s.
“My heart has been broken by no one,” Georgiana assured for the umpteenth time, sighing and walking toward the piano.
“But the baron has not called upon you for days and days!”
“It has been all of two days, Yvette, and he warned me that he needed to attend to Conservatoire duties. He will be here this afternoon for tea, if that information comforts and allays speculation.”
“And Monsieur Butler? Surely he must be home by now and yet he does not visit. The tragedy increases! We shall inquire as to his whereabouts while socializing today, my dearest Georgiana. Surely someone will have news.”
“You will do no such thing! Mr. Butler’s business is none of mine unless he chooses to enlighten me!” Georgiana smiled at her two friends, softening her face and tone after the sharp retort. “Truly, dearest Yvette and Zoë, all is well. I am merely tired and desirous of solitude. I have missed playing. I know you do not understand, but trust me that my opting to remain home is not a reflection of internal sadness or because I do not enjoy shopping and your company. Now, hasten on your way before the best ribbons are gone.”
The twins did not look convinced but they argued no further. Minutes later Georgiana was alone. Blessedly alone. Everyone in the house was gone except for the servants, who wandered about quietly attending to their tasks. Even Mrs. Annesley had gone for an afternoon by herself in the city. Lord Caxton promised to join her for tea later in the day, as soon as it was possible to break away from practice for an upcoming symphony performance, but that gave Georgiana upwards of three hours of freedom.
“Freedom,” she mumbled as she spread the sheets along the piano rest. An odd word choice, she thought, pausing to reflect. Am I not happily anticipating the baron’s visit? She nodded as an answer and it was true that she enjoyed his company.
She ran the tip of her index finger over the symbols inked on the staff, following the lines across to the brace and then down to the lower staff. Without lifting from the parchment, she completed the circuit, tracing each clef and note sign until reaching the bottom of the page. There she paused, staring at the signature scrawled in the margin for a minute before brushing her fingertip over it.
Sebastian Cedric Frasier Albert Butler.
Sharon Lathan is the best-selling author of The Darcy Saga sequel series to Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice. Her previously published novels are: Mr. and Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy: Two Shall Become One, Loving Mr. Darcy, My Dearest Mr. Darcy, In the Arms of Mr. Darcy, A Darcy Christmas, and The Trouble With Mr. Darcy. Miss Darcy Falls in Love is Georgiana’s tale of love and adventure while in France. Complete with a happy ending. In addition to her writing, Sharon works as a Registered Nurse in a Neonatal ICU. She resides with her family in Hanford, California in the sunny San Joaquin Valley. Visit Sharon on her website: www.sharonlathan.net and on Austen Authors, her group blog with 25 novelist of Austen literature: www.austenauthors.com