“What would my life have been like without Jane Austen?”
An interesting question! It would have been very different, that much is certain! I first discovered Jane Austen when I was about 13. I used to go to my local library every week and one day I found a book called Pride and Prejudice. I knew nothing about the book, but from page one I was hooked. I loved the witty banter and the characters. As the book progressed, I loved the romance When it was finished, I couldn’t let Jane Austen go and I read all her other books.
Life moved on. I went to university then I became a teacher, and I often re-read Jane Austen’s novels. I fulfilled my ambition of becoming a published novelist, writing many Regency romances and then, one day, I decided to treat myself to a re-read of Pride and Prejudice. As I read it, I found myself wondering about Mr Darcy. What was he doing when he was off the page? What happened when he his sister was about to elope? How did he persuade Wickham to marry
And what was he thinking when he made that disastrous first proposal to Lydia ? Elizabeth
I started to write a few scenes of Pride and Prejudice from his point of view but I couldn’t’ stop and Mr Darcy’s Diary was born. The rest, as they say, is history. I spent the next seven years of my life writing a whole series of diaries, looking at Jane Austen’s novels from the heroes’ points of view. I came to know Jane Austen’s novels with far more depth and I came to appreciate her skill as a writer even more.
Jane Austen is now woven into my life at every level. I read her books I write my own books based on her novels and I frequently give talks or do book signings at wonderful Jane Austen locations. I’ve been lucky enough to give talks at the
in Chawton and I’ve just spent two weekends signing books at Jane Austen
House Museum ,
the beautiful National Trust property used as Pemberley in the Colin Firth
adaptation of Pride and Prejudice. Lyme Park
My life without Jane Austen would have been pleasant, but with her, it has been truly special.
Amanda Grange was born in
in the north of .
She studied music it England and became a
teacher before fulfilling her lifelong ambition of becoming a published
novelist. She now lives in Nottingham
University . Cheshire,
The photo on the left shows Amanda with Mr Darcy’s famous shirt (dry, not wet!) at the Pride and Prejudice exhibition. It is currently on display at
the stately home used as Pemberley in the Colin Firth TV series of Pride and Prejudice. Lyme Park
FREEBIE!!! Until Wednesday 18th December on the Kindle Amanda’s Regency novel “ The Rake” (written under the pseudonym of Amy Watson) is on a free Kindle promotion.