Welcome to a new friend of My Jane Austen Book Club! Barbara Tiller Cole is the author of Fitzwilliam Ebenezer Darcy and is my guest here today with a lovely guestpost. Join me and welcome her on her first visit to our online club!
Leave your comment + your e-mail address to win a signed copy of Fitzwilliam Ebenezer Darcy. The giveaway contest is open internationally and ends on December 9th when the winner is announced.
Thank you so much for the opportunity to be with you for a guest post. I recently had a wonderful opportunity to talk with the Elizabeth Darcy from my story Fitzwilliam Ebenezer Darcy. I was shocked that I got to visit with her a second time. Neither of us can explain how it came to be, but neither could Mr. Darcy explain how his life was changed by the 4 ghosts that I sent to visit him. Visiting with a personage that lived 200 years ago was a wonderful experience, and I recorded our conversation and will share part of it with you here.
‘Elizabeth Darcy and Barbara Tiller Cole’s Shopping Adventure’
Elizabeth Darcy: I am so happy I was allowed to visit with you again, Barbara. As I shared before, I do not understand how it came to be. But then since your ghosts were allowed to visit Fitzwilliam and I again, I find it best not to ask too many questions.
Barbara Tiller Cole: Mrs. Darcy, I do understand and am happy that the ghosts helped both you and Mr. Darcy.
Elizabeth Darcy: I thought we agreed to call each other by our first names. Please call me Elizabeth. I thoroughly enjoyed our shopping experience, Barbara. But I find this century, and many of your customs and inventions hard to understand.
Barbara Tiller Cole: I enjoyed our shopping adventure as well Elizabeth. I believe Mr. Darcy will thoroughly enjoy the portable DVD player and the movies you are taking back for his viewing pleasure. I am happy we were able to find the hand crank battery charger. Utilizing that device will allow you to be able to see the films multiple times since you do not yet have electricity in your home.
Elizabeth Darcy: Electricity! Oh, Fitzwilliam and I read about Benjamin Franklin and his discoveries. I do hope that electricity will become commonplace in my lifetime. I am glad to have this device to take to my husband. You called it a D.V.D. Does this have something to do with an unmentionable disease? I have read about the French disease while trying to improve my mind. I understand that some of the lower classes call it VD?
Barbara Tiller Cole: Oh no, Elizabeth, it has nothing to do with the French disease. It stands for Digital Video Disc.
Elizabeth Darcy: Digital Video Disc…hmmm? Well, I am not sure that helps me understand this any better. So I will trust you with your knowledge. I do want to understand more about these moving pictures you helped me purchase. You said they are about my Fitzwilliam and I? Who are these two men who portrayed my Darcy, my beloved? Colin Firth and Matthew MacFadyen? Do you have a preference?
Barbara Tiller Cole: They are two actors. I much prefer Colin Firth. But many of my friends like Matthew better. You should watch them both.
Elizabeth Darcy: I find it quite strange that people in your time would be interested in us.
Barbara Tiller Cole: Believe me when I say there are many people quite obsessed with you and your Fitzwilliam. Why I myself have written two books featuring the two of you. There are literally thousands of stories that feature the Darcys. A woman named Jane Austen wrote the original version.
Elizabeth Darcy: Jane! Oh, I met her at a private reading in London. It was after she wrote a lovely story about Elinor and Marianne Dashwood. How delightful that she would write about my beloved and myself. Why are people obsessed with us so many years later?
Barbara Tiller Cole: Let’s see, how can I explain this to you? The fact that the two of you were willing to let go of your pride and prejudices, and change, in order to find true love together is a fantasy of many of us in this century.
Elizabeth Darcy: You find it unbelievable I was willing to see beyond my blindness, and my tendency to unfairly judge others? It was that enlightenment that allowed me to see my Fitzwilliam's true worth. People in your time find bewilderment in that?
Barbara Tiller Cole: Your willingness to change is definitely a part of it. However, I am sure it has more to do with your husband's willingness to change to win your love that caused my fascination. There are many that long to have your kind of love. And, of course, it doesn’t hurt that your Mr. Darcy is rich and handsome.
Elizabeth Darcy: Oh, he is quite wealthy, indeed, and the most handsome man of my acquaintance—including those I have seen in your century. However, his true worth is in his genuine love for me. It is truly an amazing thing to have made such a love match. Did you not make a love match yourself, Barbara.
Barbara Tiller Cole: Oh, I am blessed to say that I did. That is not to say that he changed for me as your Darcy did for you. Why I have trouble even getting him to put down the toilet seat! (laughs)
Elizabeth Darcy: Toilet seat? Do they have seats on chamber pots in this century?
Barbara Tiller Cole: (laughs) We have indoor plumbing and my husband and I share a bathing chamber. I know that would have been unheard of in Regency time.
Elizabeth Darcy: (shudders) I cannot imagine such a thing. My Fitzwilliam did purchase a special large tub from France, as a special present for me, and we love to take baths together (blushes).
Barbara Tiller Cole: Yes, I wrote about that in your story.
Elizabeth Darcy: I would like to go back to the concept of indoor plumbing. I would wish to return indoor plumbing back to my dear Fitzwilliam, but that may be too much to hope for. Does your manservant no longer have to empty the chamber pots, and that allows you both to use the same one? But certainly you have privacy…
Barbara Tiller Cole: … Of course we have privacy. But I do not have a manservant. Few do in our century, though many wish that they did. I am not sure I can explain flushing a toilet to you. I would love to send you home with a Home Depot catalogue however. It details all types of home improvements that will be available in the future. Perhaps Mr. Darcy can find someone who could assist you with creating such a device.
Elizabeth Darcy: I would like that indeed. I have so many more questions to ask of you, Barbara. Do you think that I could come and visit you again?
Barbara Tiller Cole: I would love that, Elizabeth. Until next time…
Barbara Tiller Cole
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'Pride and Prejudice' meets 'A Christmas Carol' A Jane Austen/Charles Dickens crossover story, 'Fitzwilliam Ebenezer Darcy' takes the best of both classics and spins them into a delightful Holiday treat! F.E. Darcy has fallen into pitiful self-loathing and sorrowful angst-ridden despair; all of this due to his belief that he has lost forever the chance to marry the only woman he has ever loved—Elizabeth Bennet. Seeing her son in such a state, the Ghost of Anne Darcy reaches out to him; informing him that three ghosts would visit him and give him hope. Will these Spirits provide him with the courage to try again to win the esteem of his one true soul mate? Barbara Tiller Cole, an Atlanta native and the writer of the popular book 'White Lies and Other Half Truths', presents this family friendly classic—a delightful combination of the best of her two favorite authors, Jane Austen and Charles Dickens. Barbara credits her parents with fostering a love for both of these authors. Each Christmas, Barbara’s father would sit and read Dicken’s classic 'A Christmas Carol' to the family. Her mother consistently challenged her to improve her mind by extensive reading, Jane Austen style. This book is dedicated to the memory of Cliff and Jeanne and the season they loved the best.
Fitzwilliam Ebenezer Darcy is available at Amazon in soft cover and Kindle and at Smashwords for Nook and Apple applications.