Happy birthday to all of us!

Three years…a lifetime in the blogosphere, and thanks to you–our lurkers and readers and commenters–for your great comments and for dropping by so often. And extra special thanks to your employers for so generously lending us your time.

I’ve learned so much from everyone here–it’s been a real education. And I’ve been humbled and amazed, too, by the smart, knowledgeable, funny people who have joined the Riskies family.

With little originality, I’m going to remind you of my favorite posts over the last year.

In my tireless campaign against gratuitous mantitty, I counterattacked with a post about Hot Old Men like the lovely and talented Alan Rickman: Women swooned at his imcomprehensible upperclass mumble and the slow crawl of his jowls seeking freedom from his high collar. And I promise, I will post about Hot Old Women sometime, too.

I love our interviews too, and this year I was fortunate enough to get an exclusive with Cupid on Valentine’s Day. The Regency wasn’t bad, all things considered. Not too much whalebone, and no steel–that was tough, dealing with Victorian corsets. You wouldn’t believe the number of arrows I ruined. …

You might think blogging on holidays is easy, but how on earth do you relate an American holiday, such as Thanksgiving, to the Regency? Fortunately, Thanksgiving 2007 was also George Eliot’s birthday and I pondered on why one of my favorite, flawed novels, Daniel Deronda, is like a turkey dinner.

I also enjoyed our week celebrating the birthday of Jane Austen, and chose Mansfield Park–mainly because I suspected none of the other Riskies wanted it. I wasn’t even sure I wanted it myself. What a revelation, to read this sexy, difficult, daring book, and what a great discussion. Did anyone read it as a result? Tell us what you thought.

I find there are topics we return to again and again, because they’re fascinating and influential, and we discover new facts we have to share. I blogged about the great astronomer William Herschel on March 13, the anniversary of the day he discovered the planet Uranus. I’m sure one of us will mention him again soon. I revisited another favorite topic, servants, in response to an email from a blog visitor who highly recommended Mrs. Woolf and the Servants by Alison Blight, and wondered how Woolf’s attitude to her servants was like or unlike that of Regency-era masters.

Please tell us if there’s a topic you’d like to talk about–we love to hear from you! And if you’re a lurker, come by and make your first comment. Don’t be shy!

Prizes? Oh yes, prizes.

If you’re a writer, I’ll offer a critique of your first chapter and synopsis.

If you’re a reader, you can win a signed copy of each of my books, Dedication, The Rules of Gentility, and Forbidden Shores (the last written as Jane Lockwood).

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23 Responses to Happy birthday to all of us!

  1. Jane says:

    I can’t believe I missed the Hot Old Men post. I just read it and agree with most of your selections. I would love to continue reading posts about shows on Masterpiece Theater on PBS. I read that the 2009 schedule includes a new adaptation of Oliver Twist.

  2. Cheri2628 says:

    I always enjoy reading interviews with Regency writers who talk about their latest releases. Other enjoyable topics could be the trips to the beach, hairstyles, gentlemen clubs, portrait painting, actresses and dancers, gaming halls, mistresses, neighborhoods of London, levels of rank and privilege,country estates, kitchens/cooking, and medical treatments.

  3. janegeorge says:

    Hi Janet!

    More Risky topics! I’d like to have you Regency authors chime in more often on subjects like hot vs. erotica, cross-genre titles, history-lite, humor in historicals, the rise and fall of industry demands and terms (such as “Chick-Lit”), the dark side of being a working writer (LOL) etc!

    Thanks for tossing Alan Rickman into my morning. I swoon at the merest mention of his jowls. *off to fan self*

  4. Oh, great suggestions, Cheri. And I’m sure Cara will pick up on Masterpiece Theater shows, even if they’re not strictly speaking Regency.

    I’d like to have you Regency authors chime in more often on subjects like hot vs. erotica, cross-genre titles, history-lite, humor in historicals, the rise and fall of industry demands and terms (such as “Chick-Lit”), the dark side of being a working writer (LOL) etc!
    the inscrutable market. I’m not sure we’re better informed than anyone else (I’m not!).
    Dark side? What dark side? It’s all giggles and chocolate…

  5. Diane Gaston says:

    Wow, cheri2628, that’s a great list! We’ll have to keep that in mind.

    Janet, I could never pick a favorite blog of yours. You always surprise me , make me think, and teach me something new. All that while being riotously entertaining!

    I just reread your selections and was amazed all over again!

  6. Santa says:

    I keep having moments of fond rememberance whenever the Riskies look back over the past three years.

    I have to say I adore a bit of cheekiness and you, my dear, are a master – or is that mistress – of it.

    More please about the kitchens and cookery. I am forever intrigued by how thin a paper thin slice of Regency ham really is. I’ve even conducted trials here at the gourmet store.

    More HOT MEN – young or old. I’m feeling a bit like a cougar of late!

  7. I love that description of Alan Rickman, Janet!

    Hm, I’m always interested in “daily life” historical topics–food, houses, clothes, technology as it impacted everyday life, horses, etc. And anything military, of course.

  8. Maureen says:

    Happy blog birthday!! I enjoy reading about the clothing and everyday items used during the Regency. I also like reading about their celebrations and what they would do for them.

  9. So hard to choose–I like it when you take the piss out of the rest of us, so keep doing that, ‘kay?

  10. Cara King says:

    Ooh, hard to pick my favorite post! But, on consideration, I’d have to say the Mansfield Park post was my favorite. Lots of insight there, and then it also sparked such a great discussion!

    And I’m sure Cara will pick up on Masterpiece Theater shows, even if they’re not strictly speaking Regency.

    I certainly will if there’s interest…. I tried Cranford, though, and got *very* few comments, so I’m not sure there’s enough interest… But I’ll certainly try again with Oliver Twist!

    Cara

  11. kimmyl says:

    There are so many post that I really enjoyed reading. You never know what you ladies weill come up with next. That’s what I love about this blog.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Hmmm…I’m with Jane, I’d love to read more about hot vs. erotica, and writing a hot historical (loved Forbidden Shores!). Regency birth control might be fun too! Any info on that?

    Kate

  13. Kammie says:

    I like the variety that already exists. I especially love to read the posts about places and things I’ll probably never see. Oh, and I’m a huge Jane Austen fan, so I always love those posts.

  14. Caffey says:

    Hi Janet! Leave me out of your contest since I have all your books (and what a joy reading them!!)
    Having not known of this blog the whole year, I have some I can go back on to read and plan to do that. So I might mention something thats already been done, but if so, do ignore me, LOL.

    I’d love to learn more about what Almacks is all about! I read about it in books, its mentioned but not much to give me more info about that. So along with that and other famous places or services (like Bow Street Runners).

    Then too after places, I thought of the different inventions that came out over time from Medieval, Regency etc. In HS when I opened our social studies book and had a lesson on different things like the Cotton Gin, I was into them. But theres a dark side to the industrial time I was told. So that too I thought of. We often go to those that so interesting but too those difficult times and issues (mental health, orphans, drug addictions, etc).

    Thanks for asking for this.

  15. Lois says:

    Hey, any reason for a Brandon/Alan Rickman pic, I’ll take it! ๐Ÿ™‚ And love talking about any JA book, but I read MP before the discussion, and I still think MP is pretty good, it’s my third favorite. . . guess I’m still in that minority of people who liked it. LOL ๐Ÿ™‚ And I already forgot what else you posted there. . . heck, it’s early for me. LOL ๐Ÿ™‚ But hey, with all of you guys, if you post it, I’ll read it, doesn’t matter what it’s about! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Lois

  16. Any excuse to look at dear Alan is always welcome! Goodness, hot old men – hot young men – if they are in Regency dress even better!

    I have to agree, Janet. Your posts are always thought provoking, a learning experience and a complete riot to read!

    I like your list, Cheri. I love the off the wall topics – so to speak. The interesting things that are unique to the Regency period. And as a writer, any time you talk about the writing process or even better RESEARCH MATERIALS!! I am a research book addict!

    And how about a list of ALL possible wonderful performances of Regency classics or films/programs about the Regency?

  17. Haven Rich says:

    Alan Rickman…*drool*.

    Wait, wasn’t there a question?

    Oh yeah! I love talking about fashion. I’m especially fond of shoes!! I didn’t get enough of a shoe fix for my bday lol.

    Janet, I hope it’s white chocolate! Yump!

  18. robynl says:

    I love reading about the Regency period and the fashions, events, everyday life, etc.
    Keep up the good work and thanks.

  19. Oh this is all fabulous! We won’t have to think up any topics ourselves for weeks. What great suggestions.

  20. Have you seen the clip on youtube where Ian Mckellen and Alan Rickman settles the score on who is THE regency supervillain?

    its hilarious!^^

    do a search for:dead ringers,rickman,yet another costume drama

  21. Cara King says:

    Thanks, LiteratureVixen! That’s hilarious!

    Cara

  22. Kwana says:

    Hot Old Men! Love it. Happy Anniversary.

  23. M. says:

    late to the party, but happy anniversary indeed.
    alan rickman – i’ve loved him for a long time, but never more than in ‘truly, madly, deeply’ where he is a melancholy and swooningly faithful ghost. and those pivotal scenes in emma thompson’s ‘sense and sensibility’ – i’ve never understood why 100% of the attention goes to colin firth’s wet shirt in ‘pride and prejudice’, nice as it is.

    something that always makes me laugh (and it may very well be in a different time period – i’m not so precise on the years involved) is when characters strike attitudes and give them grandiose names. love those.

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