After a week away, I’m just starting to catch up on laundry and emails, but I can’t help adding my tuppence to all the discussions you’ve all had while I was away.

I agree with Cara on Pace vs Depth; I like stories that occasionally slow (though not stop) for world-building and character development. I find that uniformly frenetic pacing can become boring in its own right. In a romance I also want to see some glimpses of the HEA.

Diane’s post A Character in Possession of a Good Motto provoked thoughts and smiles. The closest I’ve come to character mottos was in thinking about how the characters in LADY DEARING’S MASQUERADE would react to being imprisoned. Livvy would carve poetry into the walls to keep herself sane; Jeremy would risk death to try to escape.

Janet’s Let’s Talk About Summer had me looking forward to RWA. It’s been far too long since I’ve met with my fellow Riskies and there are so many of our regular visitors I am looking forward to meeting in person! Oh, and that cover is very Barbie but the girliness is not necessarily a bad thing. 🙂

And Megan’s That Fresh Feeling and Amanda’s What I’m Doing on my New York vacation had me wishing I could be there with them, soaking up all the artsy inspiration and good writing vibes. And one can never view too many gratuitous Sean Bean images.

As for what I have been doing, I was in Florida visiting my in-laws. Take three parts Mr. Woodhouse, two parts Mrs. Bennet, add a dash of Sir Walter Elliot, shake well and reincarnate as an elderly Jewish couple and you get the idea. I love them dearly but I was also glad we planned some good outings.

One day (and many $$$) were spent at Epcot with the kids. Expensive, only lightly educational but fun, especially pigging out at the country exhibits: shawarma and hummus at Morocco (yum!) and chocolate eclairs in France (yum again).

I also took my budding violinist to see Pinchas Zukerman perform with the Florida Orchestra. He conducted the entire concert and played a Mozart violin concerto, looking very relaxed and happy wearing what appeared to be black silk pajamas. We had 2nd row seats (not ideal for sound balance but great for viewing nuances of technique) and my daughter gazed up at him as if he were a god–and he pretty much played like one.

The helpful string expert at the music store where we rented a violin alerted us to a performance of Mahler’s 2nd Symphony by the Bach Festival Orchestra. I hadn’t heard much Mahler before, perhaps because symphonies that extend far beyond the typical 4 movements are less likely to be played on classical stations. My local orchestra, the Binghamton Philharmonic, hasn’t ever performed a Mahler symphony, at least not while I’ve lived in the area. But wow! There’s a whole world in that music. Must hear more.

Anyway, what has everyone else been doing this past week? What’s your favorite ethnic food? What do you think of Mozart? Mahler? Do you have any relations who remind you of Jane Austen characters?

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