Saturday, December 10, 2005

What do Regency authors do with their time….?

Thanks, first of all, to Mandy, Kate and the other authors for allowing me to join the authors’ site and to post here. I’m fairly new to blogging, so it’s very exciting.

Those who have already read A Regency Invitation will know that it finishes with a plea from Nicola and Elizabeth that I extract my digit and produce the prequel. Well, I have now started it. It will be my seventh Regency for Mills & Boon. But please don't hold your breath for it, because it's going very slowly. I hadn’t realised quite how difficult it would be to write a prequel and to make sure that everything I say in it dovetails with the later (already published) book. In future, I think I shall write linked books in the correct chronological order. Better for my stress levels.

I spent a very rewarding day at the Herefordshire Museum earlier this week. It contains a hidden gem of a costume collection. By working at the collection as a volunteer, I get to see the costumes at close quarters and also to quiz the costume curator about their history. What more could a Regency author want? It’s bliss.

Here, for example, is an absolutely fabulous evening gown of pale pink silk taffeta, dating from 1805-1810. RNA members may have seen this in the News, but since the photo there was only black and white, I make no apology for including it again here, in colour. It is slightly faded—it’s possible to see from under the hem that the pink was a more intense shade originally—but it is a really delicious confection.

I should add one word of warning, I suppose. Not every day as a volunteer is spent drooling over exquisite gowns from two centuries ago. I spent more than half my day entering stacks of data on to the Museum’s database. And the items I was listing weren’t gowns. Sadly, they were only samplers.

Joanna Maitland

1 comment:

Kate Allan said...

The gown looks amazingly fresh to me - considering it's nearly 200 years old.