twelve couples i’ll always be in love with.

First of all, Happy Valentine’s Day!

I thought for a good five minutes about what I wanted to write about today.  I usually do a post on contentment and singleness, but I think I’ve said all I need to on the subject.  (See those posts here, here, and here – all of which, I realize after re-reading all of them, bemoan the infamous Valentine’s Day Banquet of ’13 – LOL.  They’re actually pretty decent, too, so if you want to hear my thoughts on contentment, they’re worth a read.)

But today is not about being single.  Today is about relationships.  And if we’re not in relationships, we can at least obsess over those who are, right?

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Today, I’ve decided to write about book and movie couples that are in love and that I am in love with (because that’s way less depressing than dwelling on how single I am, lol).  (Just kidding; I’m actually totally content right now.  So yay.)

These aren’t couples who are just cute together (because I could write about cute fictional couples for dayzzz).  These are couples who have stuck together through thick and thin and love each other despite the trials they go through.  They fight for their relationship and defy the odds.  They may not have fallen in love at first sight, but their relationship lasted because of the circumstances that brought them together and kept them together.

In no particular order (cuz you guys should know by now that I hate picking favorites), here are the twelve fictional couples that have basically defined all of my relationship goals.

Honorable Mentions:
Lulu and Liam {The Little Women Letters}
Mac and Rose {Eight Cousins and Rose in Bloom}
Flynn and Rapunzel {Tangled}
Cath and Levi {Fangirl}
Katniss and Peeta {The Hunger Games Trilogy}
Kathleen and Joe {You’ve Got Mail}
Alexander and Eliza {Hamilton and also a real-life couple}
Roy and Dale {the Roy Rogers movies and also a real-life couple}

(And Clintasha would be right at the top but Joss woN’T STOP BLOWING HOLES IN MY SHIPS.  GAH.  *Hulks out*)

Shirtbert {Anne Shirley and Gilbert Blythe} | Anne of Green Gables

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These two.  GOSH, these two.  Ever since they first met in Anne of Green Gables, I knew they’d fall in love.  Except Anne was so blind to how much Gil loved her (and she was so deluded about what love really is) that it didn’t happen for a while.  *shakes head*  Silly Anne.  I mean, the guy gave up his position at a school for her!  He also saved her in a boat and NUMEROUS other amazing things.  Together, they make such a great couple.

“Anne, you have tricked something out of that imagination of yours that you call romance. Have you forgotten how he gave up the Avonlea school for you so that you could stay here with me? He picked you up everyday in his carriage so that you could study your courses together. Don’t toss it away for some ridiculous ideal that doesn’t exist.”

Copanga {Cory Matthews and Topanga Lawrence} | Boy Meets World

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OKAY.  I’ve been a huge fan of Boy Meets World for about two and a half years now (although it seems like longer) and their relationship is just so. many. goals.  They were friends for years and years before they got into an official relationship in the second season.  Their relationship withstood high school, the first two years of college, three break-ups (not including Topanga’s parents’ divorce).  Fourteen years later, in Girl Meets World, they’re still together and just as much in love as they were when they first started dating.

“Over half of all marriages fail.  It’s even worse for people our age.”
“Every statistic that you throw at me is going to be about other people.  I don’t care about other people – I care about you and me!  If every marriage failed except one, I’d guarantee that one would be ours.”

Laurie x Jo {Theodore Lawrence and Josephine March} | Little Women

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Okay, this is the only couple in this entire post who didn’t actually end up together.  (Jo and I may agree on everything else, okay, and I’m sorry, but I’ll ship this ’til the day I die.)  From the start, their friendship just screamed “ROMANCE!” and it seriously irked me that they didn’t end up together.  Because they totally should have.  They were so alike in so many ways, and they may have fought a lot, but what couple doesn’t?!  Ugh.  Anyway, I ship them like there’s no tomorrow.

“I have loved you since the moment I clapped eyes on you. What could be more reasonable than to marry you?”  (THAT’S WHAT I SAID.)

Knighthouse {Emma Woodhouse and George Knightley} | Emma

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Emma is my favorite Jane Austen story because the love interests shaped each other more than any other of her couples.  (Did Darcy have the influence on Lizzie that Knightley did on Emma?  NO.  I rest my case.)  I love stories that do this so. much.  Why is a person in your life romantically if not to mold you into someone better?  Food for thought.  If ever a couple was destined to be together, it was Emma and Knightley.  Even though he’s like seventeen years older than her.

“So, tell me, have I no chance of succeeding?  My dearest Emma, for that is what you always have been and you always will be, my most beloved Emma.  I cannot make speeches.  If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more, but you know what I am.  I have lectured you and scolded you and you have born it as no other woman would have.”

(I also desperately love Cher and Josh from Clueless, and their relationship is defined so well and I love them and baby Paul Rudd is just the sweetest little cinnamon roll.)

Julie x Eric // Julia x Paul {Julie and Eric Powell, and Julia and Paul Child} | Julie and Julia

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These two couples are new additions to my stock of Relationship Goals, but I knew they had been added the first time I watched Julie and Julia.  I love the distinction between the two relationships!  Julie and Eric are blissful newlyweds, and Julia and Paul have been married for several years but they’re even more in love than when they first got married.  When I first watched the movie, I told my sister, “Julie and Eric have what I want my newlywed married life to look like, and Julia and Paul have what I want my married-for-thirty-years married life to look like.”  #goals

“You are the butter to my bread and the breath to my life.”

Steggy {Steve Rogers and Peggy Carter} | Captain America: The First Avenger

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Er. mah. gursh.  This is definitely the most tragic couple in my entire list.  They loved each other so much and they didn’t end up together (not married, at least) and that just breaks my heart.  Peggy loved Steve just based on his character, before he was the insanely muscular dude he is halfway through the movie, and if that’s not true love, I don’t know what is.  As soon as Steve said his “I’m waiting for the right partner” line, I was hooked.  (And so was Peggy.)  If ever a couple deserved to be together, it’s Steve and Peggy.

“I’m gonna need a rain check on that dance.”
“All right. A week next Saturday.  At The Stork Club.”
“You’ve got it.”
“Eight o’clock on the dot. Don’t you dare be late. Understood?”
“You know, I still don’t know how to dance.”
“I’ll show you how. Just be there.”

Anastasia x Dimitri {Anastasia Romanova and Dimitri Sudayev} | Anastasia

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When Anastasia and Dimitri first meet, they’re both really just using each other to accomplish their personal goals.  It’s hate at first sight.  When Anastasia and Dimitri have their first angered exchange (“Do you really think I’m royalty?” “You know I do!” “THEN STOP BOSSING ME AROUND.”) and Anastasia sticks her tongue out at him, I’m always just like, “Ohhhh, you two are gonna have it so bad.”  And they do.  They’re always slightly at odds, but in an endearing way.  In the end, Dimitri sacrifices his ambition to find the lost Russian princess for Anastasia (who, spoiler, is the lost princess) and they end up eloping and it’s just beautiful.

“That, uh, that dress looks really good on you.”
“Do you think so?”
“Yeah. I mean, it looked nice on the hanger but it’s even better on you. Y-you, you should wear it!”
“I am wearing it!”
“Oh, oh yes, I was just, um, trying to give you a… a…”
“Compliment?”
“Yeah.”

Robin x Marian {Robin Hood and Lady Marian Fitzwalter} | Robin Hood (1932)

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I grew up with the 1932 version of Robin Hood (here’s the trailer if you haven’t seen it), and I’ve always loved the relationship that Robin and Marian have.  There’s just something about a classic tale of the love between a knight and his lady that I fall for every time. She’s hesitant at first, and he’s madly in love at first sight.  He wins her love by being the dashing hero he is, and she falls for him.  (And then, in the original tale, he dies.  I like this version better – they ride off into the sunset and it’s wonderful.)  It’s just a classic tale of love and I love it muchly.

“Tell me: when you are in love, is it hard to think of anybody but one person?”
“Yes, indeed, m’lady, and sometimes it’s a bit of trouble sleeping.”
“I know! But it’s a nice kind of not sleeping!”
“Yes. And it affects your appetite, too. Not that I’ve noticed it’s done that to you, ‘cept when he was in the dungeon waiting to be hanged.”
“And does it make you want to be with him all the time?”
“Yes. And when he’s with you, your legs are as weak as water. Now, tell me, m’lady: when he looks at you, do you feel a kind of pricky feeling, like goosey pimples running all up and down your spine?”
{Marian blushes}
“Then there’s not a doubt of it!”
“A doubt of what?”
{Robin swings in through the window where he was eavesdropping} “That you’re in love!”

George x Mary {George Bailey and Mary Hatch} | It’s a Wonderful Life

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I’ve been in love with George and Mary ever since I watched It’s a Wonderful Life for the first time (which was so many years ago that I can’t even remember when it was).  We watch the movie every Christmas Eve and I’ve always loved watching George and Mary’s relationship start to build from their childhood to thirty years (and four kids) later.  They’re still so in love and love each other so much despite all of the hardships they go through.  Their trials bring them closer together and idk but that’s what I want more than anything else.  #actualrelationshipgoals

“What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word and I’ll throw a lasso around it and pull it down. Hey. That’s a pretty good idea. I’ll give you the moon, Mary.”
“I’ll take it. Then what?”
“Well, then you can swallow it, and it’ll all dissolve, see… and the moonbeams would shoot out of your fingers and your toes and the ends of your hair… am I talking too much?”

Percy x Marguerite {Sir Percival Blakeney and Marguerite St. Just} | The Scarlet Pimpernel

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M’KAY.  The first time I read The Scarlet Pimpernel (and then binge-read most of the other Scarlet Pimpernel books), I knew I’d ship Percy and Marguerite ’til my dying days.  And, honestly, their relationship is one of the most brutal that I’ve ever seen.  Marguerite loves him even when he thinks she betrayed the St. Cyrs.  And then (in the book, at least) he risked his life to save her (just like he does for others *sheds a single tear*), and it always makes me cry so many happy tears.

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, Sir Percy.”
“This beholder is enchanted.  If I were to tell you that I adore you, would you have me do so stintingly?”
Adore me?”
“Or would you have me declare it as I feel it?  With all my heart?”
“But you can’t be serious – you know nothing about me!”
“Exactly so.  Which is why I yearn to know everything.  You must tell me all about yourself, in every detail, but oh so slowly, so very slowly, so that it takes a very, very long time.”
“I don’t know whether you’re mad or…”
“Desperately in love?  ‘Tis all the same.”

Remadora {Remus Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks} | Harry Potter

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This one’s a new one, too, but it’s impacted me just as much as the others.  When we first meet Remus Lupin, he feels worthless and unlovable.  Tonks thinks otherwise, and loves him despite what he is.  He protests, but she loves him even more.  Remus and Tonks’ love taught me that there will always be someone to love you, despite the circumstances and despite everything you think that’s wrong with you.  *cries many tears*

“You see!” said a strained voice. Tonks was glaring at Lupin. “She still wants to marry him, even though he’s been bitten! She doesn’t care!”
“It’s different,” said Lupin, barely moving his lips and looking suddenly tense. “Bill will not be a full werewolf. The cases are completely-”
“But I don’t care either, I don’t care!” said Tonks, seizing the front of Lupin’s robes and shaking them. “I’ve told you a million times….”
And the meaning of Tonk’s Patronus and her mouse-colored hair, and the reason she had come running to find Dumbledore when she had heard a rumor someone had been attacked by Greyback, all suddenly became clear to Harry; it had not been Sirius that Tonks had fallen in love with after all.

Finally, to all of the above couples, here are some wise words of advice from Josh Dun.

the scarlet pimpernel blog party tag.

blogpartyJoining the party a little late because I had school and now I’m at the beach.  BUT NOW I AM HERE.
1. The obvious question… how’d you get introduced to the Scarlet Pimpernel?
My awesome aunt and awesome older sister introduced it to me.  I can’t remember which happened first, but I know the two of them definitely influenced my reading it.  (And it took me a few tries to get through the infamous first couple of chapters, but I did it.)
2.  If you could meet any of the characters in real life, who would you choose and why? (you can use the obvious answer of Sir Percy if you really want to, but this is your chance to get creative. ;))
Probably either Percy (#somainstream), Anthony Ffoulkes, or Tony Dewhurst.  Because I loves all of them and they are my precious cinnamon rolls.  I’d probably just follow them around.  Because of reasons.  XD
3.  What are your top 3 favorite quotes from the books or movies? (yes, just three)
OH MY GOSH.  ONLY THREE???
Okay, fine.
I think the first one would be this gem from early on in the first book:
“Had he but turned back then, and looked out once more on to the rose-lit garden, she would have seen that which would have made her own sufferings seem but light and easy to bear–a strong man, overwhelmed with his own passion and despair. Pride had given way at last, obstinacy was gone: the will was powerless. He was but a man madly, blindly, passionately in love and as soon as her light footstep had died away within the house, he knelt down upon the terrace steps, and in the very madness of his love he kissed one by one the places where her small foot had trodden, and the stone balustrade, where her tiny hand had rested last.”
This is the first passage from a book that I can ever remember my heart actually skipping a beat while simultaneously fluttering in my chest.  He kissed. the. steps, guys.  *fans face*
This next one’s from my personal favorite of the books, El Dorado.  It’s the other one that TSP82 is based on.  This quote is from the scene when Percy’s been captured and hasn’t slept in weeks.  (Seriously, they made that scene in the movie SO. MUCH. LESS. DRAMATIC.  Reminds me of Peeta’s leg wound in The Hunger Games.)
“I am in a tight corner – tighter than ever I have been before; but I am not dead yet!”
He’s literally almost dead and he’s still holding onto hope!
Last one’s spoken by Andrew Ffoulkes (Mr. Rabbit Teeth from TSP82) in El Dorado, when he’s trying to encourage Marguerite.
“Percy was not the man to leave a comrade in the lurch!  He would not be the man whom we all love and admire, whose word we all obey, for whose sake we would gladly all of us give our life – he would not be that man if he did not brave even certain dangers in order to be of help to those who call on him.”
YEAH, THAT’S MY BABY.  *explodes into a burst of rainbow confetti*
(Seriously, if you guys haven’t read El Dorado, you’re missing out on most of Percy’s awesomeness.  I almost like that one better than the original.)
4. Who is your favorite supporting character in the books? (Percy and Marguerite are ineligible)
Lord St. John Devinne.
Jk.  ; )  (Only true fans will reel in horror at that… League points for you if you understood that reference.)
Honestly, I don’t know.  It’s either Andrew, Tony, or Hastings.  I love those guys.  (I was sooooo obsessed with all of those books and actually had a favorite for a while… I think it was Tony.  I just can’t remember now because I haven’t read them in a while.  Which is SAD.)
5. Which film versions have you seen and which do you like best?
I’ve seen the Leslie Howard version (’34) and the Anthony Andrews version (’82).  I’ve also seen Pimperenel Smith, if that counts.  And duh why is that even a question OF COURSE I LOVE THE AA VERSION AKA TSP82 AKA THE TRUE AND ONLY VERSION THE MOST.  (And I’ve also listened to most of the music from the musical.)
6. What’s your top-absolute-favorite scene in the first book? (if you’ve read it– if not, what’s your favorite scene in whichever movie you prefer?)
In the first book…  Honestly, other than the kissing-the-stairs scene, I think I like the big reveal scene in the end.  Not to spoil it for anyone who hasn’t read it *glares at those people* but I love it from the moment you hear the ‘good British-sounding “Damn!”‘  GOLLY PETE I LOVE THAT BOOK.
(And to the weirdos people who haven’t read it…  Oh my gosh. Seriously, what are you doing with your life???  I mean, I know you have a life and more important things to do, but… READ THE BOOK.  I just shoved it at a friend {*waves at Morgan*}, and I’ll do it again.  Yes, yes, yes, get your important things done, then take a break and read the book.)
7. If you could dream-cast a new adaptation of the book (a period piece, that is) who would you choose to play the roles of Sir Percy, Marguerite and Chauvelin?
I dream-cast’d this a few years ago (here) and I think I’d stick by that casting.
Chauvelin would definitely be played by Richard Armitage.  I mean, come on.  We’ve seen how villainous he can be, but we’ve also seen how much we can sympathize with him.  I love him.
I’m going to stick with my original casting of Scarlett Johansson as Marguerite.  She’s played sweet characters and strong characters.  I love her, too.
And who else would be PERFECT for Percy besides the amazingly talented Tom Hiddleston???  I’m standing by that.  *drops mic*
8. Do you think the Scarlet Pimpernel does his rescue work purely for “the love of sport,” as the narrative would tell us (and as he would often claim) or does he have more noble motives that he won’t admit?  Explain your answer.  Show your work.
NO NO NO.  He has far, far superior motives other than just the love of the sport!  He’s a guy, so obviously he’ll try to be all macho and claim that he only does it for the sport, but, deep down inside him, he does it for the people.  He wants to save people, so he does, no matter what the cost.  (Somebody wrote a blog post on this once, I think.  That, or we discussed this question on The Day-Dream, right, Amy?  I distinctly remember this being an issue, back in our Emailing Days.  *sigh of nostalgia*)
Work shown: A quote from El Dorado.
The Scarlet Pimpernel did not take it upon himself to punish the guilty; his care was solely of the helpless and of the innocent.  For this aim he risked his life every time that he set foot on French soil, for it he sacrificed his fortune, and even his personal happiness, and to it he devoted his entire existence. […]  The Scarlet Pimpernel was a personality of whom an entire nation might be justly proud.
9.  Second to Chauvelin, who is the worst villain in the book series, and why?
ARMAND ST. JUST BECAUSE HE DISOBEYS PERCY.
And then also Lord St. John Devinne.  Because he’s pure evil.
10.  What’s your favorite novel in the series (if you’ve read more than one)?  If not, which one are you most excited to read?
I’ve already said it and I’ll say it again – El Dorado.  It’s one of the only ones where we see Percy in real peril, after things go horribly, terribly wrong.  (*glares at Armand*)  He proves his worth by not letting his situation get the best of him.  And this also lets us see how the little League does flying solo.  ; )
11.  If you could change one thing about your favorite version of the movie, what would it be?
I think I’d make TSP82 longer.  Or I’d make TSP12 (remember when that was gonna happen? *cries tears*) ACTUALLY HAPPEN.
12.  Lastly… how would you convince a skeptical friend to read/watch TSP?  What is it that you love about it?
I actually just did!  Or, I’m working on her.  ; )  *waves at Morgan*  I also convinced some very skeptical guy-friends to watch it and they LOVED it.  They thought it was a girly movie (no comment), but I convinced them that it had a lot of guy aspects to it, and some amazing duels – of wit and of swords – and we got together one night and watched it.  And now they love it.  So yay me  : )
I just love Percy as a person.  He’s always been one of my favorite literary characters ever.  I normally love guy characters because they do stuff that make me swoon (*cough* Levi) or because they’re just likeable (looking at you, Gilbert Blythe, George/Alex Knightley, and Mac Campbell).  But I love Percy for different reasons – he’s so courageous and downright brilliant.  He puts his life on the line to save others, and I think that’s something to be commended.  I just *sniffs* have sO mAnY feELS abOUT HIM… *flings self down stairs*
Here’s the trailer for Masked, the reason Amy’s blog party is taking place.
*holds sword to your throat*  WATCH IT AND SUPPORT MY FRIENDS.  I KNOW HALF OF THESE PEOPLE.
WATCH IT.
 

Interview with Author Amy Dashwood!

Hello, everyone! Almost recovered from the awesomeness last Saturday? : )

I’m here today with budding authoress Amy Dashwood, who has recently published her debut novel, Only a Novel – which is an unassuming name for such an awesome novel. (Amy doesn’t know this yet, but I got my copy in the mail yesterday and stayed up until – well, I won’t tell you how late, but it was late! – reading her wonderful book! I’ll most likely do a review sometime soon, too, so watch for that.)

Anyway, Amy graciously let me do an interview with her! I’ve been on pins and needles to see her answers to my questions and I hope you’ll enjoy the interview as much as I did!

First, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Well, for starters, what I know about myself isn’t really worth telling, but if you’ll let me tell you what I imagine about myself… oh, very well. I’ll stick to facts. If you insist. But I’ll try to make the facts interesting.

I am… saved by the grace of Jesus Christ, homeschooled since kindergarten, the oldest of five children and a wearer of glasses. 😛 I absolutely love communication, whether it be through talking (ahem), writing or blogging—and I do all of those all the time! I wear socks almost year-round, I obsess over chocolate, and I like things that smell good. There, that’s a little bit about myself. 😀 (Oh, and I use far too many smileys for my own good.)

Will you tell us a little bit about your book Only a Novel?

Elizabeth Markette has always led a quiet and privileged life under the guardianship of her wealthy grandmother. But when her grandmother dies and leaves twenty-one-year-old Elizabeth alone in the world and nearly penniless, she’s forced to earn her own living for the first time in her life. Taking inspiration from her favorite British novels, she sets sail for England to seek a position as a governess. Before she can do that, however, she is (rather abruptly and overwhelmingly) befriended by a lonely and slightly eccentric young socialite, Lavinia Bancroft, who introduces her to the sparkling world of London society. Yet Elizabeth still feels the need to make her own way, though once she actually acquires a position, she begins to have doubts as to whether she’s actually qualified. The children she’s teaching don’t seem to like her, the housemaid seems far too eager to be friends—who wants to be friends with a housemaid?—and the stable hand keeps interfering with the children. Elizabeth’s one hope and consolation is that somehow, some way, Mr. Darcy will come riding out of the mists very soon indeed to save her from a life of respectable servitude. There’s just one problem—where is he?

How’d you come up with the title of your book? Did you come up with it in the beginning, before you started writing, or after, when you were finished and knew exactly what your book was about? (It always takes me forever to decide names for my novels…. I’m notorious for having an untitled novel months after it’s finished….)

Originally, my novel was supposed to be titled What Would Elizabeth Bennet Do? Thankfully, my family and close friends talked me out of that. 😀 I usually take forever to title things… in fact, I have an entry in my journal from December 2011 that expresses my frustration at not being able to find a perfect name for “the Elizabeth story”. I hit on Only a Novel after realizing that my story mirrored Northanger Abbey more than Pride and Prejudice—that is, the heroine is much more like Catherine Morland than she is like Elizabeth Bennet. Slowly, she begins to realize that life doesn’t always play out the way it does in books, and that a fairy-tale-perfect story is something that appears in only a novel. (Not to say that real life can’t have a happily-ever-after, of course, but I’d better hush up now before I spoil the ending.)

When did you start writing and what was the very first thing you wrote?

I know I was writing stories when I was five. I don’t know what I did before that. Just loafed, I suppose.
~P.G. Wodehouse

That quote, one of my favorites, is actually pretty true for me. My first work of fiction was an epic tale entitled “The Bobbsey Twins and the Blueberry Contest”, written at the age of five 😀 for a school assignment. It incorporated all of my spelling and vocabulary words and recounted the adventures of—you guessed it—the Bobbsey Twins, as they picked blueberries for a contest. And celebrated Thanksgiving. In the same day. I don’t think I was particularly knowledgeable about fruit seasons as a kindergartner.

Do you write in the same genre all the time, or different genres depending on your mood or what you feel like writing?

Different genres depending on mood and feel-like, definitely. 😀 Sometimes I feel dramatic and sometimes I’m silly and sometimes I’m in between, and I have stories going for all three moods.

Do you have any advice for writers, either novices or experienced?

Can I steal a quote to answer this? Ray Bradbury once said, “Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.” My advice to anyone is to write the story that you want to tell. Don’t let it bother you if you think no one else will be interested. Just write it, for crying out loud. The people who like that sort of thing will find it the sort of thing they like, and the people who don’t like that sort of thing… well, did you want their approval to begin with?

And the ultimate writerly question – what’s your cure for writer’s block?

Cure? There’s a cure? TELL ME MORE ABOUT THIS PHENOMENON.

Um, in a more serious vein, I don’t actually have a cure. Sad, I know. I write when I can, and when I can’t, I complain and slam my head into a pillow. And wait until the Inspiration Strikes Again.

Writing questions aside, what do you do in your free time?

You’re going to be sorry you asked. 😀 I adore reading and I do it whenever I can. I spend waaaaay too much time on the computer, what with blogging and e-mailing lovely people and—surprise!—writing. I’ve recently been bitten with the sewing bug, and I also enjoy crocheting and knitting. Cooking is one of my favorite things to do, too, and cake decorating is the one way in which I can be artistic. I go to the library a little too frequently—ahem—and I love taking long walks and bike rides.

How long have you been homeschooled?

The technical answer to this is “since kindergarten,” since that’s when school is supposed to begin, but I think a more honest answer would be “all my life.” My mom’s been teaching me since day one. 😀

(Because we all know it’s virtually impossible to read one book at a time….) What books are you reading?

At the moment, I’m dabbling in… Opera for Dummies, Emily of New Moon, A Tale of Two Cities, The Redemption of Sarah Cain and Sewing and Collecting Vintage Fashions. Eclectic mix, no?

And you like period dramas! What are a few of your favorites?

A few? A FEW? I have to list only a few? Eowyn, how can you do this to me? Oh, all right, fine. Just understand that these aren’t my only favorites… there are SO MANY more, but I’ll spare you.

~Pride and Prejudice (1995)
~Emma (2009)
~Little Dorrit (2008)
~The Scarlet Pimpernel (1982)
~Wives and Daughters (1999)

Musicals! Do you have a favorite?

I do indeed! It’s a really, really long one, an operetta of sorts really, based on a very long and classic book by Victor Hugo… you’ve probably never heard of it. Does the name Les Miserables ring any bells? 😉

Cake or brownies? (I love random questions….)

Cake, cake, ‘eavenly cake.

I’ve read that Sir Percy and Mr. Knightley are both tied for first on your Top Ten Favorite Literary Heroes list! What is it about them that makes them tied on your list? Why don’t you like one above the other? (I only put Sir Percy above Mr. Knightley on my list because he saved hundreds of innocent people from their deaths. You can be chivalrous [Knightley, heehee] without saving people, though, and that’s what very nearly kept me from ranking one above the other and, instead, making them tied on my list, too! Ha, ha – my question paragraph might be longer than your answer….)

Asking which I like better (Sir Percy or Mr. Knightley) is like asking whether I prefer strawberries or corn muffins. They’re so very different that it’s practically impossible to compare them, and yet they share the very best attributes and that’s why they’re both my favorite. I admire Sir Percy’s bravery, dauntlessness, and self-sacrifice—yet he’s not quite so realistic, in my mind at least, as some other heroes. (Eeeesh, I’m dreading the slaughter I’m going to face from the Leaguettes after this.) Mr. Knightley, though not perhaps as amazing and awe-inspiring as Percy, is a true gentleman in every sense of the word. When and if I get married someday, I want to marry a man who’s just like Mr. Knightley. (A guy who’s just like Sir Percy would be great too, but face it, there aren’t THAT many guys out there rescuing helpless aristos from the guillotine.) Does that make some sort of sense? Don’t kill me, Janeites. Put down your swords, Leaguettes. Please.

Last question – in a nutshell, please tell us why exactly that you like writing. What inspired you to write?

As to why I like writing… well, “good question.” (That’s code for “Let me stall for time while I think of a good answer.”) There are many, many reasons why I love writing, but the biggest one is probably that it’s just plain fun. Sure, there’s often blood-and-sweat-and-tears involved, but overall, it’s one of the most enjoyable and rewarding things I do.

As to what inspired me to write, the answer is short, sweet and simple: books. I love reading, and from a very young age I was determined to write lots of books when I grew up so I would always have plenty of reading material. As Tori Morrison said, “If there is a book you truly want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.”

Thank you so much for answering my questions!

Thank you so much for hosting me! This was amazing!

Miss Amy Dashwood is a daughter of the King of Kings, a homeschooled seventeen-year-old and a lover of books, period dramas, chocolate, long bike rides, babies, teacups, historical costumes and fiddle music. Only a Novel, her first full-length work of fiction, chronicles a year in the life of Elizabeth Markette, a young woman with a head full of books who takes on a job as a governess after the death of her grandmother. Only a Novel is available for purchase and you can find Amy at either of her two blogs, Yet Another Period Drama Blog and The Quest for Stories.

~Eowyn~

Anthony Andrews in My Fair Lady!

Arwen and I just finished listening to the BBC radio broadcast of the second Proms, My Fair Lady, starring Anthony Andrews. *sigh* I’ve been waiting to listen to it for forever (well, since I found out about it on The Day-Dream, at least) and it finally came. Now I am happy. : )

We actually had a busy morning before listening. Long story short, we all ended up going to that airsoft gun fight! I played and had a really fun time! Then Arwen and I came home early and we set up the speakers and everything. And then it started.

How was it, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you. Simply breathtaking.

Warning: Please know that this post will be a completely fan-girly, gushing kind of post. There. You have been warned.

Anthony Andrews starred as Professor Henry Higgins. (Yes, I know that the term ‘starred’ is debatable – ‘my fair lady’ refers to Eliza Doolittle, yes, but I personally think that Anthony Andrews was the real star. Moving on.) He did a fantastic job! I was so excited when I remembered that he had the very first song – not long for me to wait! I don’t know which of his songs were my favorite because he sang them all so amazingly well… I loved them all! He did such a good job playing Professor Higgins, which is a very hard character to do! (Arwen said that Higgins was kind of like Sir Percy – the foppish Sir Percy – in the way that he didn’t care about anything or anyone. I agree and say that Anthony did a good job with it because he’d already played that kind of character in one of the best movies ever!) And he had such an amazing singing voice – I didn’t think he’d be that good! I was pleasantly surprised! (Please put the tomatoes down! I’m a fellow Leaguette and AA fan!) Ooh, and then in the middle, after the annoying break to talk about the play (booooring…), they had a short blurb of Anthony talking about My Fair Lady. I looked at Arwen and was like, “It’s him!!” And he even corrected his (one!) mistake very well! (Did anyone else catch it?) *sigh* He was so good…. Definitely something I’ll listen to over and over and over!

The other actors (which is anyone less awesome than Anthony) included Annalene Beechey as Eliza Doolittle (I didn’t much care for her Cockney accent, but I think she had a beautiful singing voice after Eliza learned how to talk properly), James Fleet as Colonel Pickering (He only sang one song – ‘You Did It!’ – but I thought he was pretty decent!), Julian Ovenden as Freddy Eynsford-Hill (I absolutely loved his version of ‘On the Street Where You Live’! And his ‘sniggering’ was really funny!), Alun Armstrong as Alfred Doolittle (Really good! I didn’t think he’d be able to sing well, either, but he did really well!), and Jenny Galloway as Mrs. Pearce (She only sang one song, too. I was like, “It’s Mrs. Thenardier! Not that I *cough* listen to that song, though….”).

The only thing I didn’t like was the fact that it was just the audio. : P We didn’t know what was going on! There’d be this long silence, then the audience would laugh, and I’d go, “What happened?!” Especially at the end, when Eliza comes back. Such a long pause! I wanted to see the facial emotions! Argh. We’re waiting to see if any videos come out on YouTube… which shall be posted here posthaste.

Heehee…. Funny story. Halfway through, in the intermission, whoever was hosting it said, “If you’re just joining us, we’re live at the Royal Albert Hall with My Fair Lady.” Arwen was like, “Are you kidding me? Just joining you?!” I laughed and agreed. This was something to be anticipated and eagerly awaited!

If you wanted to see what all the fuss was about and missed it, you can still listen to part one here and part two here. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did. (Keep in mind that they’re only available for a limited time…. Listen soon!) Oh, and click here to see the program notes – including the whole libretto!

And for all you die-hard Anthony Andrews fans who say, “Well, duh! Of course I listened to it!” I’d like to know what you thought! Was it better than you thought? Worse, maybe? In a way, it was both for me – I loved it, but didn’t like the fact that it was fully-staged (as opposed to semi-staged or whatever they said on the website) with sets and props and costumes and everything and I couldn’t see it! Oh, well. Like I said before, this is definitely something I’ll listen to again and again!

What about you guys?

~Eowyn~

PS: Notice the top picture? It’s from the actual musical! See two more here.

The Random Post

Above, my mutant Independence Day peach cobbler. It was better than it looks!!

I’ve been debating writing this post for a while. I don’t necessarily like writing random posts because, as you all probably know by now, I tend to get a little long-winded. Ha! I’d love to do an entire post on each little thing happening, but I’m not that long-winded!

So. Here we go. The Random Blog Post. It’s full of random things. I’ll be skipping from one subject to another. (Don’t say I didn’t warn you….)

First off, I’m super excited about My Fair Lady at Proms 2012! Anthony Andrews as Professor Higgins!! That’s enough to get me excited – listening to Sir Percy, uh, I mean Anthony Andrews’ version of Professor Higgins, which has been greatly acclaimed… pictures, at least. (No sound or video clips… but it won’t be like that for long!) Can’t you just hear him singing, ‘I’ve grown accustomed to her face….’? Can’t wait!!!

And I just looked at the updated My Fair Lady page – guess who’s also starring as Alfred Doolittle?! Alun Armstrong!! And Jenny Galloway as Mrs. Pearce! *happy sigh* My younger brother is having a friend over, but… I think I’ll step out. : P

I just found a way to actually listen in – hope it’ll work!!! If not, I shall be one very sad, very disappointed, and very cranky Anthony Andrews fan. : D

Second, heehee…. I don’t think anyone at church last week knew I was a Jedi. Ha! *crickets* I guess I should explain.

I am not a Star Wars fan. Never have been, and probably never will be. There’s just something a leeeetle weird about “The Force” to me…. Anyway, I just got a new phone (Woot! No Internet, though… I got it so I could text a little faster than I was using a flip phone.) and one of the first apps I downloaded was a lightsaber app. Please don’t ask me what posessed me to get it – I don’t know. (But just because I don’t like the movie doesn’t mean I can’t like the special effects and music, right?)

Okay, so I’ve been letting my little brother play with it. And he loves it. He rode in the car for an hour and played with that app the whole time – just changing the colors and type of lightsaber the entire ride! That was two Saturdays ago. I thought I had a good idea going when I told him that he could play with it in church the next day. *sigh* Silly me.

He sat in my lap for the first part of service, then when the sermon started, I pulled my phone out, double-checked the volume to make sure it was on vibrate, and handed it to him. He gave me the hugest and sweetest little smile and then tapped on the hilt of the lightsaber. The laser-blade shot out… complete with the sound effect. AHHH!!! I could feel myself blush as I snatched my phone away and turned it off, then handed him his Bible. Argh. I knew I’d turned the sound off! Weirdness…. My other brother just kept staring at me and silently laughing. *frusterated sigh* After church, Arwen told me that the lightsaber shot out right as Dad turned on the laser pointer and pointed it at the screen. So it looked like the church’s laser pointer was equipped with an awesome sound effect…. *facepalm* Thank goodness that our church is really small – only about eight families and seventy-ish people total. So I didn’t embarass myself that much… well, not really. *facepalm again* Moving on to a less embarassing random topic….

We’ve started listening to Adventures in Odyssey again! We had a really nice Christian library where we lived before and they had all of the AiO albums. We listened to almost all of them, then couldn’t when we moved two states away. Anyway, we decided to buy a few albums at a conference a few months ago and I’ve really enjoyed listening again. It’s not very often that you get funny, suspenseful, Christian entertainment such as radio dramas or movies! I’ve been trying to keep tabs on good indie Christian films in development so that I can see them and actually feel good about something I watched in a theater. (I’d recommend October Baby and No Greater Love – two lesser-known indie films. And there’s also the Sherwood Pictures films…. But I really enjoyed October Baby – maybe even more than Courageous? Scandalous, I know….) Anyway. My younger sister is auditioning for the AiO Get In The Show! contest and I’m really hoping she wins… and that has nothing to do with the fact that you get a lot of the albums if you’re in the top twelve! : P

Some of you may or may not know, but I’m a hopeless TV show addict. Old TV shows, specifically. Hogan’s Heroes, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Waltons… I love them all. I also recently discovered Growing Pains! It’s really fun to see Kirk Cameron as a teenager. (And after reading Still Growing, I sort of had to watch the show because he talked about it a lot and got my curiosity aroused!) I don’t know if I could recommend GP, by the way, because there are a few questionable subjects such as dating. The ones after Kirk became a Christian – Season Three and beyond – are better. You can really tell! (But, if you’re looking for a really good TV show to watch, I’d totally recommend The Dick Van Dyke Show. Extremely clean and very funny. But, hey! It’s Dick Van Dyke!!)

Ooh, and speaking of movies…. We watched Captain America for the first time a few days ago! I think Captain America is my favorite superhero, too! (Out of the half-half-dozen I’ve seen, anyway….) Heehee – we were watching it and I kept recognizing people. “Hey, look!! It’s Mr. Thornton!! And that guy from Amazing Grace – the Duke of Kent!! And Elrond!! And that guy from the Kit movie!! And Mace Windu!!” But I totally lost it when Dominic Cooper appeared. The mustache threw me off, but when he said, “We are ready,” I knew who it was. “It’s Willougby!! DON’T TRUST HIM, STEVE!!!” I seriously had my doubts about him for the entire movie… but he was trustworthy. : D He was funny, too.

All in all, I really liked Captain America. My dad used the remote and bleeped out (most of) the language. (Donations to the ClearPlay/TV Guardian fund are welcome….) I really liked all of Steve’s values, which were very different than most people’s today. And that scene when he told Maggie that he was waiting for the right partner? *sigh* Me likes.

On my novel…. I haven’t written since I finished my 50k words! I’m starting to go through withdrawl… I can hear Nikki and Alec calling me… weird, right? I’m going to work on it sometime soon – really soon. Maybe while my younger brother’s friend is here…. I don’t know. Anyway, excerpts are coming… just as soon as I can figure out how to do excerpts. Does anyone have any pointers on that? I just can’t figure out what to put up here! Definitely not the whole thing – it’s not nearly ready – but I don’t want to do too little. Just how much, though?! : P

And my dress for the ball is very nearly started. Heehee. And the fourth part in my Les Miserables series is in the works! Do not fear – it shall come!!! Soon, too!!


If you’ve made it this far… you should be commended. Thanks for listening to all my ramblings. : D

~Eowyn~