I will now turn it over to Ms. Lilian. Be sure and take note of her generous giveaway at the end of the post.
Dear Janet, thank you so much for having me at your lovely blog. You know, I just had a shocking revelation: although I follow your site all the time, this is the first time that I am actually “visiting” it. I am very excited to be here.
I thought a lot about the subject of this post and the idea came to me from the very book that is always close to me: Pride and Prejudice. These days, as I am writing a new story, I return again and again to the original (although I almost know it by heart) and an idea just popped into my head: what was it that aroused my hunger for fanfiction 20 years ago? We all know that part of Jane Austen’s genius consisted in saying little and suggesting / implying very much. But what were the moments of the wonderful Pride and Prejudice that left me intrigued and eager to know more, to imagine more? What precisely induced me to surf the internet, to start reading countless stories about my favorite couple, and finally to shyly begin allowing my imagination to create stories of my own?
And this is the question and the challenge I address to your lovely readers: what are your top 3 - 5 moments of Pride and Prejudice that can be “blamed” for leading you toward the JAFF genre?
After a long struggle, I managed to choose five, but of course there are at least twenty more. I avoided the major scenes - the Netherfield ball dance, the first proposal, the visit at Pemberley, the
1. Meryton Assembly Ball – the description of Darcy. “Mr. Darcy danced only once with Mrs. Hurst and once with Miss Bingley, declined being introduced to any other lady, and spent the rest of the evening in walking about the room, speaking occasionally to one of his own party. His character was decided. He was the proudest, most disagreeable man in the world, and every body hoped that he would never come there again.” The moment I read it ( thirty years ago lol) I tried to imagine what he really looked like and what was in his mind. That happened long before I saw any movie or miniseries, so I knew only what JA wished to reveal – so very little.
2. Chapter 6 – the first steps of Darcy falling in love: “But no sooner had he made it clear to himself and his friends that she had hardly a good feature in her face, than he began to find it was rendered uncommonly intelligent by the beautiful expression of her dark eyes. To this discovery succeeded some others equally mortifying. Though he had detected with a critical eye more than one failure of perfect symmetry in her form, he was forced to acknowledge her figure to be light and pleasing; and in spite of his asserting that her manners were not those of the fashionable world, he was caught by their easy playfulness. Of this she was perfectly unaware; -- to her he was only the man who made himself agreeable nowhere, and who had not thought her handsome enough to dance with. He began to wish to know more of her, and as a step towards conversing with her himself, attended to her conversation with others. Poor Darcy, what torment must have been in his mind and in his heart; and it was only the beginning. (and what a perfect starting point for a jaff story, right ?)
3. Chapter 10 - Darcy’s invitation to dance a reel – what a sweet and sharp exchange, which showed so much of Elizabeth’s wit and strength.
4. Chapter 33 – More than once did Elizabeth, in her ramble within the Park, unexpectedly meet Mr. Darcy. She felt all the perverseness of the mischance that should bring him where no one else was brought, and, to prevent its ever happening again, took care to inform him at first that it was a favourite haunt of hers. How it could occur a second time, therefore, was very odd! Yet it did, and even a third. It seemed like wilful ill-nature, or a voluntary penance, for on these occasions it was not merely a few formal enquiries and an awkward pause and then away, but he actually thought it necessary to turn back and walk with her. He never said a great deal, nor did she give herself the trouble of talking or of listening much; but it struck her in the course of their third rencontre that he was asking some odd unconnected questions - … What a wonderful opportunity for them to better know each other, completely wasted by both. What was he possibly thinking here? What storm of feelings rose inside him?
5. Chapter 50 –Elizabeth’s regrets. She began now to comprehend that he was exactly the man who, in disposition and talents, would most suit her. His understanding and temper, though unlike her own, would have answered all her wishes. It was a union that must have been to the advantage of both; by her ease and liveliness, his mind might have been softened, his manners improved; and from his judgment, information, and knowledge of the world, she must have received benefit of greater importance. I absolutely love this small fragment and it is always a source of inspiration for me. I feel it described perfectly ODC and can be anytime developed into a full story – as I know it was, and I am sure it will be again. That’s why I love the JAFF genre so much.
Lory, I love this idea of allowing the readers to ponder about their top 3-5 moments that stole their hearts for Pride & Prejudice. This will be an intriguing discussion, I am certain. I will have to think on this myself and will give my thoughts in the comment section. I have several that come to mind almost immediately. Thank you for challenging us to give this some thought.
I didn't realize you had never visited my blog before now. Doing the review of your book, His Uncle's Favorite, in July of 2013, is the closest you have been. We will have to remedy that. Please come back for a visit soon. You are always welcome.
Now for the giveaway details. Yes, dear readers, there is a giveaway. Ms. Lilian is very generous too. She is offering two eBooks to two lucky readers. It will be winner's choice of any of her books and the giveaway is international. Thank you so much, Lory Lilian for such a lovely giveaway. The giveaway will end at 11:59 PM on the 14th of September. Good luck to all of you.