Has everyone finished their holiday shopping over Black Friday and Cyber Monday? Is everyone sick of the Christmas spirit yet? I hope not, because my Christmas-set “Harlequin Historicals Undone” e-story is out today!
The Maid’s Lover is connected to The Winter Queen, though not really a sequel–more a parallel story. We see Rosamund’s friend, Anne Percy, and her suitor Lord Langley, who we met in TWQ. Anne was a bit, shall we say, tempermental whenever they met, and now we find out why. There’s more Christmas feasting, dancing, decorating, fashion–and lots of nookie in the snow. And hidden in dark corridors. And tied to canopied beds. (It is an “Undone,” after all!).
(Find it here, on eHarlequin!)
I loved getting to revisit the Elizabethan Court with this story, and getting to see what was going on with this fiery couple! I also loved getting to drag out my favorite Christmas CDs a little early (since I had to write this story even before Halloween, and was not at all in the winter spirit, so I needed a little help). Being a “pantser” writer, I don’t usually get to utilize my deep love of office supplies in making storyboards or plot trees or anything like that, but that doesn’t mean I don’t need preparatory help when it comes to starting a book. I spend an inordinate amount of time doing things like looking up photos of actors and actresses that might resemble the characters, and coming up with soundtracks for the story. Some might say that is just wasting time not actually writing, but I say it is Absolutely Essential. 🙂
For this story I listened to a lot of Renaissance Christmas CDs, such as: Lionheart’s Tydings Trew, Baltimore Consort’s Bright Day Star; The Baroque Christmas Album; Noels and Carols From the Olde World; and Elizabeth’s Music. For aesthetics, I watched a lot of The Virgin Queen and The Other Boleyn Girl (even though I actually hated this movie, I thought Anne Percy looked a lot like Natalie Portman in that green dress…).
I will give a free download of The Maid’s Lover to a commenter on today’s post!!! (Plus I still have my Laurel McKee contest on my website, until December 16–go ahead and enter both, it’s Contest Tuesday!)
What are some of your favorite Renaissance-set movies (I love the old Zeffirelli Romeo and Juliet, Dangerous Beauty, Shakespeare in Love, etc)? Any favorite Christmas CDs or carols? (And how gorgeous is that purple velvet dress??? I am seriously lusting for it!)
I didn’t like the Boleyn Girl or Shakespeare in Love either, but they were fabulous to look at – what one girlfriend calls a ‘high frock count’! the Drew Barrymore version of Cinderella, ‘Ever AFter’, is set in Renaissance France and it is beautiful too – not just the castles and dresses, but the lives of the peasant class too.
Though, I’m no good at writing the Elizabethan Court I’ve always been fascinated by the era and will be sure to follow the link to eHarlequin.
Oh and Dangerous Beauty is one my absolute favorite movies of resent times. That poor courtesan loving that silly fellow and finding nothing but pain for her troubles.
Have a lovely day.
I loved Shakespeare in Love it’s one of my favorites. And no I have not done a bit of Christmas shopping. I’m afraid I will be behind this year.
I adore that cover! It’s amazing. 🙂 And as for movies, the Romeo and Juliet one is definitely a good one.
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I love Dangerous Beauty and Ever After. Those are tied for favorite.
“And no I have not done a bit of Christmas shopping. I’m afraid I will be behind this year.”
LOL, Kwana! Isn’t it funny that it’s only Dec. 1 and we already feel behind on the holiday? 🙂 (though I did a lot of shopping online yesterday)
I think I may have to watch Ever After again, I haven’t seen it in years. (I LOVE that masquerade gown)
Amanda, your Undone sounds great! As for movies – I like the old Romeo and Juliet as well as The Taming of the Shrew with Liz Taylor.
It’s barely 7 o’clock here on the west coast and there are already 8 comments on this post. Good to see the excitement surrounding this Undone. I downloaded my copy just now.
And oh, phew, on Anne finally getting her HEA. I’ve been agog with curiosity at what’s been going on with Anne to keep her from falling all over Langley.
Shakespeare in Love was such a perfect movie! I’ve watched it many times over. It was my first look at the Globe and the round stage. Must make for challenging scene blocking and actor movements in 3-D instead of the usual modern 2-D.
I liked Shakespeare in Love and Ever After. Okay, my name is Danielle so I might be a tad biased on the Ever After pick. 🙂 I am just about to start x-mas shopping!
Oh, I do love Ever After. I always sigh enviously when she puts on the gown with gossamer wings.
As for Christmas music, I highly highly recommend Straight No Chaser–they’ve released two different holiday albums so far, and they are amazing. ♥
I couldn’t remember any Renaissance movies so I googled the subject and found this lovely website that lists period movies, but it also has lots of other things historical, including stuff for sale!
LOL I thought that WAS Natalie Portman. I’ve become a new fan of yours and would love to get my hands on any of your stuff.
You have a wonderful cover artist working on your books as I don’t think a single one has been boring or even okay. They’ve been beautiful.
Good luck on this release and congrats on so many recently 🙂
Kit, I had forgotten Taming of the Shrew! I think I need to have a Renaissance movie festival this weekend. (I usually watch Romeo and Juliet on Valentine’s Day–weird I know–but I’m feeling a craving to watch it a bit early!)
Julie, at first I thought you meant the Thelonius Monk album (an interesting choice for Christmas), but now I see it’s a band! 🙂 Will have to look it up, I love new-to-me holiday music
My personal favorite is Rosencranz and Guildernstern are Dead – I highly recommend it! If you are looking for gorgeous holiday music to set the mood you absolutely must hear Loreena McKennitt’s albums To Drive the Cold Winter Away and A Midwinter Night’s Dream – truly amazing music sung by a masterful artist.
I agree – The Maid’s Lover looks intriguing!
Keira, I hope you like Anne and Langley’s story! I have to say that going to see a play at the Globe Theatre last year was an amazing experience. (I have an Elizabethan theater story to write soon…) It wasn’t exactly like it would have been in the 1500s (the audience was way too polite–except for the people behind me who brought in extremely stinky fried onions for dinner!), but the way it looked, the open air, the casual atmosphere, and the play were wonderful. I want to go back!!!
Diane, that is a wonderful site! I can see I need to waste much more time there. 🙂
Yes, that is a seriously beautiful purple velvet dress!
And I’m not thinking about Xmas yet…denial is a river in Jane’s head.
I hated The Other Boleyn Girl (both versions) but I adore Shakespeare in Love and The Virgin Queen. Also loved Helen Mirren as Elizabeth in the HBO/Channel 4 mini-series. Now I have to go out and buy all those CD’s to listen to some lovely Elizabethan Xmas music.
I love “Ever After” — everyone’s all glowy under the brown fabrics. :)I might need to do some research here–this may not count as “Renaissance”–but whenever I think of “Ever After,” I think of “The Princess Bride.” As you wish! 🙂
Sasha & The Silverfish
I love Dangerous Beauty, and enjoyed all the films mentioned if for nothing else but the scenery! Not only did you give me a book recommendation, but also some great recs for Christmas music. A Baroque Christmas & The Winter Queen would be a great pair for stocking stuffers (hear that, hubby?!).
I enjoyed Shakespeare In Love,Ever After and Romeo and Juliet. And O Holy Night is my favorite song for the holidays.
Much Ado About Nothing. All those amazing men!!! We used to watch it after dance class. Dangerous Beauty is first class though. Congrats on the book.
I loved Zefirelli’s Romeo & Juliet. And yes, your covers have been SUMPTUOUS lately! Congrats on the release!
I was feeling “Renaissance-ish” after this post, so tonight I watched a bit of the 1970s Masterpiece Theater “The Six Wives of Henry VIII”. I had forgotten how excellent it is! The production values are very low-tech, but the acting is top-notch and the costumes excellent (they don’t have a ’70s look at all, as sometimes they do in these older series). I need to find a reason for Tudor costume…
BTW, due to a tech snafu on the Laurel McKee site, the entries for the ARC contest were lost! Please re-enter–it’s now safe 🙂