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Excerpt from a Romance – The Twesome Loop…

January 29, 2015
mandyevebarnett


One of my work in progress novels has a romance/reincarnation theme. The narrative follows two time periods. This excerpt is from 1894. Gabriella was forced into a marriage with an older man, William by her father in an effort to gain social status. She falls in love with William’s younger brother, Arthur and their relationship has dire consequences. This excerpt finds William transporting his young wife to Italy.

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The Twesome Loop

Chapter Eight – The Journey

A messenger arrived and was escorted to the library. In a matter of moments he was running back out of the door as William’s shouts were heard.

“We are travelling to Italy directly. Have our trunks packed for six months.”

The household was a hive of activity whilst Gabriella’s and William’s belongings were folded and laid in huge oak trunks. All the while Gabriella was not allowed to leave her rooms and could only speculate on William’s instructions.

With two carriages packed Gabriella was escorted to one whilst William rode in the other. Even when he walked past her carriage window, he did not look in or speak to her. The journey would be long but fortunately, she was allowed to have Maryann accompany her. The young woman showed such dedication to her mistress and Gabriella had grown fond of her maid during the previous months. Maryann’s experience had  shown her that Gabriella’s sickness was caused by her being with child and the two women became close in the secret for a time.

Gabriella’s hand smoothed over her corseted belly her mind troubled. Whose child was it? Surely not William’s after that brutal act by the fireside. If the child was Arthur’s she would be happy to carry it but if William suspected he was not the father there was no knowing what he was capable of.

The journey was indeed long and arduous but Gabriella kept her spirits up by thinking of the moment she would see Arthur again. Maryann was as excited as she was with all the new outlooks and vistas, the different foods and the sounds of foreign tongues. After several weeks stopping at various inns at night and travelling in the heat of the day they arrived at a hilltop villa. The view indeed was spectacular and the villa itself a fine building.

“Tell your mistress she can choose her rooms from any at the back of the villa. I will reside in the fore quarters.”

“William…?”

“Tell your mistress I do not require her presence at my table and certainly do not want to see her during our stay here.”

Gabriella could only watch William stride toward the gardens. Deep inside she was glad he would not touch her but was concerned as to his motives. She walked with Maryann to the rear of the villa and choose rooms on the eastern side over looking an olive grove. With the unpacking done and a light supper eaten she decided to stroll in the garden. The evening air was still warm but a light breeze cooled her skin pleasantly. She had been disappointed when Arthur did not appear to greet them but maybe he would arrive in the morning.

My questions are –

a) Do you get a sense of era?

b) Did the excerpt intrigue you?

c) Would you continue to read?

d) What changes should I make?

e) Should I expand this section?

Could you cope with the paparazzi..?

October 11, 2013
mandyevebarnett


Tumultuous – definition: 1. raising a great clatter and commotion; disorderly or noisy; 2. highly agitated, as in the mind or emotions, turbulent

There have been tumultuous relationships between famous stars for decades. From Richard and Elizabeth to Chris and Rhianna their love life, break ups, fights and rekindled love are splashed across newspapers, the evening news programs and lately social media. There seems to be a fascination that grips the public.  How do extremely rich and famous people act that  way – it is almost ‘human’? Well, shock, horror, they are human! They want the same as most people – a loving relationship. Unfortunately for many that is not achievable when surrounded 24/7 by paparazzi, screaming fans and stalkers.

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RihannaI know I would certainly not be able to cope with that kind of scrutiny and lack of privacy. I have written about the few successful famous couples before. (https://mandyevebarnett.com/2013/07/26/fealty-a-lost-art/  Famously Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward who lived a ‘quiet’ life in Connecticut for most of their 50 years as a married couple. There is a mutual respect and honesty between these couples that maintains their relationships.

As authors we wish for that best seller, the accolades and of course the royalties but would you want your private life to be invaded? Could you cope with the constant camera flashes and questions? The lack of privacy anywhere?

A Canadian author, Alice Munro, has just been announced as winner of the Nobel Peace Prize – how will it change her life? Maybe at 82 years old she will know how to cope with such an accolade.

Fealty – A Lost Art..?

July 26, 2013
mandyevebarnett


Fealty – definition: fidelity : faithfulness

Unfortunately fidelity is not as common a commodity as it once was. The incidences of long marriages is on the decline. With the media splashing celebrities love lives across the front of magazines and dishing out the dirt on one partner or the other, no wonder marriage has become a throw away institution.

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There have been some wonderful marriages that stood the test of time and media though. For instance, Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward were married for 60 years.

Others include Tom Hanks & Rita Wilson, Micheal J Fox & Tracy Pollan, both couples celebrated 25 years. Kevin Bacon & Kyra Sedgwick 24 years. Danny DeVito & Rhea Perlman 31 years. Denzel and Paulette Washington 29 years. Warren Betty & Annette Benning and David Bowie & Iman both celebrate 21 years.Bono & Ali Hewson 20 years. Jamie Lee Curtis & Christopher Guest 28 years.

So what is the secret under the constant media spotlight and paparazzi telescopic lens? They keep their private lives – private. Restricting exposure to the Hollywood events and leading normal lives (well as much as possible!) I also believe trust in each other goes a long way too.

Do you have a enduring marriage story you can share?

What a great word…

January 17, 2013
mandyevebarnett


Effete – definition: 1. no longer fertile 2. a) having lost character, vitality or strength b) marked by weakness c) soft or delicate from or as if from a pampered existence 3. effeminate

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I have not come across this particular word before but now I want to use it…! It will most certainly crop up in my reincarnation romance – The Twesome Loop. My novel has two time periods intertwined and this word perfectly describes the perceived personality of one of my female characters.

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Excerpt of The Twesome Loop:

A Contract 1874

“You will marry him, Gabriella and that is the last I will hear of it.”

“Father….”

“Do not question my judgement, girl. It is an excellent match.”

Gabriella ran from her father’s study, up the stairs to her bedroom and flung herself onto her bed. It might be excellent for her father but certainly not for her. Her uncontrollable sobbing persisted throughout the afternoon and into early evening. No-one came to comfort her. Father must have forbidden Mother and the servants to attend her. How could her father be so cruel, marrying her to such an old man? He was ugly and brutish. She hated the way he leered at her, licking his lips. It was disgusting. Father only saw William Folkes’ wealth and the large estate in Hampshire. With the marriage, her father, a trader, would climb the social ladder of high society. He clearly didn’t care about Gabriella’s happiness. She was the sacrificial lamb – totally powerless. She had heard mother try to persuade him that William was not suitable, only to be shouted down.

“I am the man of this house and you will comply with my wishes. William is obviously fervent in his feelings for Gabriella. He will be an excellent provider.”

“But, John, she is so young and effete. Could you not find someone closer to her age, a more suitable husband?”

“How more suitable could he be? William is a wealthy and powerful man, Margaret. I am sure he will lavish many luxuries on the girl. She should think herself lucky I found such a good match. What more could she possibly want from a husband?”

“Why, love and children, of course.”

“William is certainly not too old to give her children. Now stop this complaining, I have made my decision and it is final so I will have no more talk of it.”

The marriage contract between John Lightfoot and William Folkes was signed the following week and Gabriella’s father spent lavishly on a magnificent feast to impress his new found circle. He invited dignitaries from all over the county and also many William had suggested. Gabriella watched her father strut around like a peacock, relishing his new found status while she tried to avoid William’s attentions.

 She watched in awe as one by one, women arrived wearing wonderful gowns, their hair styled to perfection and bejewelled necks, arms and fingers. Gabriella was lost in her admiration when a deep voice broke into her thoughts.

“Come, my dear, sit by your future husband.”

“I have to circulate amongst our guests, Sire; it is bad manners not to do so.”

“Surely you will be excused if you are spending time with your fiancé?”

Gabriella sat, ensuring there was a reasonable distance between them. William took her hand and drew her toward him. His eyes sparkled and he licked his lips.

“Soon, I will have you alone, my sweet. What wonders will I find under your attire to delight me?”

“Sire, please. I must go to my mother.”

Gabriella felt physically sick. His touch made her skin crawl. Just the thought of him touching her was revolting. As she approached her mother, tears welled up. Her mother embraced her.

“Please, excuse us; my daughter is feeling a little faint. It must be all the excitement.”

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Do you have a character it would describe flawlessly?

Let’s look at some examples:

You are too effete with your soft hands and delicate scent for such work

The pregnancy may be too much for such an effete woman

The soil became effete with over farming

A chemical spill made the river effete with the lost of plants and fish

Can you write a few?

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