Reading, Writing and Arithmetic Part 1

Reading, writing and arithmetic, still plaguing me after all these years. It is not the conventional abc’s, 2+2=4 or handwriting that I refer to. No, it is finding enough time to work in all these important tasks into a 24 hour day.

The “Reading” is probably the easier challenge of the three. I have added audio books to my listening pleasure as I taxi my gold mini van to school, ballet, lacrosse and now the rehab center where my mom is convalescing. It is a great way to get one’s “to-read” list shortened with added benefits to this style of reading. An audio Book truly helps one stay sane through all the traffic jams, detours and when the volume up high, it is surprisingly good at drowning out those *darn kids arguing in the back seat.  *For any negative knee jerk reactions from parents reading this, please allow me to clarify that I love and adore my children. My husband and I know how blessed we are to have our 10-year-old triplets, however, in the real world it can get a little stressful sometimes being in a confined van together for hours on end. Popping in Sense & Sensibility is a positive way of dealing with stress than screaming back at the kids.  In other prettier words….Audio Books can create complete family harmony in a mini van, try it I bet your stress level goes down as soon as you push play.

My only warning using this “audio book method” is to pick books that would be proper for younger ears to hear. Being a Jane Austen fan, I can safely listen to Pride and Prejudice, however, P&P sequels by Sharon Lathan would not be suitable for any kids under 17 years old.  Therefore, I have the books I can pop in while my kids are in tow, and books I pop in for me when driving solo. Ice lattes are good to drink when listening to the steamy Mr. Darcy, Lathan so generously bestows onto her readers. Find out more about Sharon Lathan’s P&P series here:

I also recommend having kids pick out audio books for the rides around town as well. A few great recommendations for the 9-12 year olds crowd: The Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling,  The Strange Case of Origami Yoda” by Tom Angleberger and for some good comic relief, The Diary of the Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney.

My husband has also assisted to my “lack of time to read dilemma” by purchasing a Nook for our anniversary.  I may add books in an instant, the long wait for the UPS truck to turn down my street with that Amazon box is over, and being 139th out of 140 people on the wait list for the most desirous titles will be lessened a great deal.  Not making a trip to the local Barnes and Noble can also be less frequent, however I have not been able to say this was ever a chore.  Having time to walk into B&N is always a delight for me. Sippng on a Mocha Latte and perusing through the endless book shelves, while listening to beautiful music chiming throughout the store is a “chore” I would rather keep on my to do the list.

And now the dreaded arithmetic of the day forces me to sign off for now, however, I will continue my thoughts on how to fit in reading and writing in the crazy chaos we all call life…for now we part.

Posted in Austen Sequels, Favorite Books, Favorite Things, Must Read for Jane Austen Fans!, Thoughts on Writing in the JA Genre, Wandering words... | 1 Comment

Austen Authors 1st Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary to a group of people I hope I will be associated with someday soon!  This group of authors have all done something that I am striving to do, get published.

This blog/web site is a truly delightful gift to all aspiring authors but what makes it unique compared to all the other author blogs is that it focuses on Jane Austen inspired books.  People who do not appreciate Austen’s works may think this is too limiting, not enough of a market to bother with.  To be inspired by 6 novels written so long ago their characters are as dusty as the original books themselves is beyond some people.

Thankfully, due to Austen Authors Blog, twitter and Facebook we have sources that share what some of the general populus doesn’t know…Jane Austen’s works were so well written way back then that the characters are as relatable today as they were back in the Regency times.

If you are also inspiring writer, I happily share with you this delightful gift:

Read, comment, learn and share with like-minded authors and lovers of all things Austen. You may even want to buy a few books for your own inspiration.  I pretend it is good common sense researching for my novel, money well invested but let us face it…it is just too much fun to miss any Austen inspired novel…it would be a travesty not to support each other! 🙂

From one wannabe Austen writer to the ever-expanding club out there-Happy Writing & Happy Reading!

Posted in Austen Sequels, Favorite Books, Favorite Things, Must Read for Jane Austen Fans!, Thoughts on Jane Austen's works, Thoughts on Writing in the JA Genre | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Making Connections (via Jane Austen Says…)

Shannon a fellow Janeite who is published! YIPPEE!!!

The Darcys of Pemberley has been published in all it's forms for a little over a week now. And what a week it's been for me – selling books online and in person, signing "Shannon Winslow" inside front covers, scheduling guest blog spots and a Twitter party appearance. It's a dream come true! But not in the way you might think. Some people aspire to fame and fortune when they begin writing a novel. That's not me. I'm too shy to hanker after televi … Read More

via Jane Austen Says…

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Book Review on Jennifer Becton’s, “Charlotte Collins”

Book Review:

Charlotte Collins”

written by Jennifer Becton

To purchase book from Amazon go here:

       Although I am a novice to writing and blogging, I have been a long time reader of all things Austen. Therefore, when I read any new Austen sequel that I delight in, I am most determined to share it with my Janeite friends here on my blog.

This well written book inspired by Jane Austen’s most popular novel, “Pride and Prejudice” is unlike the many other P&P sequels written thus far. The author does not take the usual path using the beloved hero and heroine of the story Mr.Darcy and Miss Elizabeth Bennet.  Mrs. Becton takes the path less travelled and finds another character to bring to life.  This novel focuses on one of the background characters in the P&P story, Miss Charlotte Lucas, a close friend of the heroine.  In P&P Miss Lucas marries the foolish reverend, Mr. Collins, who is most decidedly rejected by Miss Elizabeth Bennet early in the novel. We cringe alongside Elizabeth for Charlotte’s hasty and practical decision on becoming Mrs. Charlotte Collins. All Janeites/readers long for a better plight for Charlotte but alas it does not happen in Austen’s Pride & Prejudice. 

 Happily, we do not have to conjure up our own thoughts of how Mrs. Collins life turns out in the end,  Jennifer Becton artfully steps in and does it for us. 

We reënter Mrs. Collins life after the sudden death of Mr. Collins.  No tissues required for readers here, the story gives us hope for Charlotte’s new situation.  The younger and more energetic sister Maria Lucas is also brought to the forefront.  This allows the author to include our favorite Regency scenes of balls, dancing, young beaus as well as pretty dresses, bonnets and gloves for the ladies to fret over.  The author takes us on an Austenesque journey that includes all the ups and downs of finding love, losing love and eventually finding the one meant for the story’s heroine.

Closing the book,  I smiled pondering about what would Jane Austen think of Charlotte’s happy ending?  This quote borrowed from the front of this very same book, may give us a clue to her probable answer:

I consider everybody as having a right to marry once in their lives for love, if they can.  -Jane Austen

Ardent readers/fans of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice will delight in. *Jennifer Becton’s novel.. The author is a most avid Janeite herself, and in the most agreeable Jane Austen manner she gives us the happy ending we all have longed for in Charlotte Collins.

*You can go here to find out more information about the author and her other book releases.

I happily rate this book: 4 out of 5 quills!


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I will read forever…..


I will read forever because there are never enough happy endings to enjoy. I will read forever because there are never enough mysteries to solve. I will read forever because I love to visit my favorite characters in my favorite novels. I will read forever because reading Jane Austen’s novels just once is simply not enough. I will …read forever because it is the best gift I can give myself for a happy escape as a mom of triplets. I will read forever because there are so many books out there just begging to be read, savored, enjoyed and to read and reread all over again. I will read forever because my parents taught me the love of reading. I will read forever to teach my kids to love reading. I will read forever because there are so many adventures, experiences and places I will never get to see except between the pages of a book.
“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book. When I have a house of my own I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.”
-Jane Austen from her beloved Pride & Prejudice
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“To Do List” & finding more time to write….

My life as of late has been filled with an ever building  To Do List.  However, I know that I am not the only one that has lots of thing to do in her/his daily life. There is  evidence everywhere I go; at the drop off lines at school, the ballet studio and the lacrosse fields.  The quick hello wave we all give each other at the grocery store, library and Target, is proof that my fellow parents out there are just as busy and tired as me.

 This particular To Do List has several  important items on it such as;  finding a better school for my daughter who is brilliant but also has special needs, laundry,ballet recital, my boys lacrosse finals, studying for the Florida Certified Teacher Exams, making three medieval costumes for my triplets by next Friday, cleaning, taxiing the kiddos to school, making lunches, updating my Resume and my “Philosophy of Education”, cooking, cleaning the bathrooms, etc…. However, there is a very important item that is missing on my list lately: Writing.

I started writing this post a week ago, this fact demonstrates how hectic my daily life has been and probably always will be.  But the good news for me is that some of the tasks on my To Do List since I started writing this blog can now be checked off;  My husband and I have found a great school for our daughter for next school year, the Ballet Recital is over, my boys Lacrosse finals are finished and 1 out of 2 FL Teacher Certification Exams are completed and even better I passed the 1st exam.  Having a few of these important tasks completed is great, however, do I need to add to my list, finding time and/or scheduling time for writing my novel? 

Along with writing a book or two,  I am also trying to get back into teaching for this upcoming 2011-2012 school year, after what feels like a gazillion years.  Working full time will also make this infamous To Do List even longer.   However, my kind, generous and thoughtful parents gifted me a laptop for my birthday, this shall be my tool, my virtual quill that will enable me to write anywhere. 

My plan is to write while waiting on the pick up lines, writing along side my kids while they do their homework, writing an hour before bed every evening, writing in all the quiet moments that we all try to grab for our sanity.  In other words between the many To Do List items, I will write, write and write some more.  It may take me longer that I had planned but that is okay, life is a slow journey (Or is it a marathon?) not a race. “Whatever” as my 10 year olds would say, bottom line, time goes by too quickly for all of us…

 A mini Epilogue   

In case my Plan A doesn’t work, I have come up with a fantastic Plan B.  I will get my hands on Hermione Granger’s Time Turner and add some days here and there each month to write.  I think it is as clever as my back up plan for retirement; to play and win the lottery…

Posted in Rambling Thoughts, Thoughts on Writing in the JA Genre | 2 Comments

Disney cartoonists ahead of the Royals in fashion?

I had a whole blog written up all about my thoughts on the Royal Wedding but it was boring and everyone seemed to have the same view as me anyway.  Therefore, I skipped the story every other blogger chose to write…but then I saw this picture from an FB pal today…I couldn’t resist it….Must share….BECAUSE: 

It pretty much sums up my feeling of the wedding & the guests:

Prince William & Duchess Kate were stunning, lovely and most certainly in love with each other.  It was a delightful occasion and the whole world celebrated along with the happy couple.

Princess Beatrice & Princess Eugenie, silly, tacky and most certainly not Princess like in their attire.  They are beautiful girls but I think the assistant that clothed them that day should be fired.  Of course from the choice of dresses one might assume that Fergie was a part of the decision-making process.  However, Prince Andrew deserves to have his daughters look their best.  I hope the Princesses both find true love too and we will be able to watch their beautiful weddings as well.  In the meantime……Is their a designer in the Castle?

Posted in Wandering words... | 2 Comments