I come to you this evening from the lobby of the Portland Hilton. (Side note: I think it is absolutely ridiculous that the Hilton does not provide free internet access to guests in their rooms.) I've never stayed at the Hilton before... so why am I here now? Because this is where the 2010 JASNA AGM is being held.
The 2010 Annual General Meeting of the Jane Austen Society of North America.
Yes, I am one of "those women"--the ones who will debate if Captain Wentworth or Mr. Darcy is the best Austen hero, and who knows that even though Northanger Abbey was published after Austen died, it is actually one of her earliest works. I am a Janeite, and I wear that title with pride.
The conference thus far has been amazing. We began yesterday with an exhibit of Austen and Regency first editions that was... beyond words. I have only seen two other book exhibits that compare: the British Library and the Dead Sea Scrolls. One of the works was a first edition of an Austen predecessor. That particular book was published on subscription, which means people actually paid for it before it was printed. There is a list of all the subscribers in the front of the book, and there on the first page is one Miss Jane Austen, Steventon. For some reason, that meant more to me than the actual Austen first editions, of which there were four.
The first plenary session was given by Stephanie Barron. Her sense of humor was delightful, and I also appreciated some of the things she had to say about writing. I'd never thought of laying the constructs of a detective novel over the plot of non-mysteries, but it is an interesting way to look at fiction. It might be a good plot building exercise as well.
The conference continues tomorrow and concludes with a brunch on Sunday morning. I'll come home that afternoon to rest, because NaNoWriMo begins Monday morning at midnight. We'll be meeting at Shari's at 11:00 for our annual Midnight Write. My goal is to have my first day's word count in before I go home... though that might not happen if my dictating disturbs too many people. I'm not going to destroy my wrist just to be able to say I made it to 5K that night.
My NaNo goal this year is to write the rough draft of an entire trilogy. That means I have to write 5K in a day, rather than just 1667. It also means I'm crazy, but you know that already. I've had the first two novels plotted out for weeks, but the third escaped me... until today! I was doing a character profile and the plot just appeared. I love it.
And this is my weekend... Now I'm going back to my room so I can get some much needed beauty sleep. Breakfast is at 8 in the morning... I think. I'd better make sure before I go to bed, shouldn't I?