Mandy Eve-Barnett's Blog for Readers & Writers

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Post Meal Habits…

June 21, 2013
mandyevebarnett


Postprandial – definition: happening or done after a meal

-post-prandial-The etiquette of meal times has changed drastically in modern times. Many households have meals balanced on laps while watching TV or plates are taken to separate rooms. The latter mostly for teenagers, I believe. Obviously, some families still enjoy meals at the dining table but unfortunately it is not common practice. I think we miss out on real connections with other family members when the dining table is abandoned.

When our story is set in a particular era, details such as meal etiquette enable us to create the right atmosphere. Let’s take the 18th century as an example.

It was customary for gentlemen and ladies to dress formally for dinner, primarily because it was an opportunity to meet a partner. The host and hostess were first to be seated and the closer you sat to them the more honored a guest you were perceived as. Meals were usually two courses plus a dessert although upper class diners could see up to 25 dishes from which they chose two or three.

Once the meal was finished, the gentlemen would stand and wait for the ladies to exit the dining room. Leaving them to smoke cigars and drink such beverages as brandy and cognac. At this time the dishes and  tablecloth would be removed. The ladies gathered in the drawing room to exchange conversation and wait for the men to rejoin them for the evenings entertainment.

This sort of evening meal is not really practical now-a-days, with children’s activities, working parents and our frantic lifestyles but once in a while wouldn’t it be fun?

Have you discovered a ‘lost’ etiquette while researching an era?

Report on Literary Weekend…

September 27, 2012
mandyevebarnett


Well I’m back to the grindstone but feeling relaxed and regenerated after a wonderful long weekend. The drive to Saskatoon took five hours and my companion, Linda, kindly drove all the way (although I did volunteer). For those of you who do not know, I live on the Albertan prairies, which, as the name suggests, are flat. As an expat, I sorely miss the rolling hillsides of England. So you can image my delight in seeing undulations in the landscape as we travelled toward Saskatchewan. Of course nothing matches the English countryside but it was a real treat to see hills.

We arrived early evening and after registering at the hotel, went in search of supper. We found a great Chili’s restaurant and afterwards at the hotel indulged in uninterrupted writing – bliss. On the Saturday we attended a conference hosted by PWAC (Professional Writers Association of Canada).

Connect, Celebrate, & Collaborate

Date: September 22, 2012
Location: The Refinery, 607 & 609 Dufferin Avenue, Saskatoon, SK

This was a very informative day where we networked and gained some valuable insights. Linda and I have come up with a game plan for her publishing company, Dream Write Publishing, advertising campaign. So we are both pumped. Not to end the day too quickly we happened upon a great Italian restaurant so had to partake of the fine pasta with a glass of good red, of course.

Sunday was The Word on the Street event and we drove downtown to set up beside the library. Rows of white canopies with dark blue covered tables welcomed us. It didn’t take long to have all the books displayed and I had one corner for Rumble to sit ‘guarding’ his books. I loved to see the reaction of children and adults alike when they noticed my little monster. With lots of cuddles and pats on the head and a candy for a treat, I found everyone intrigued at the Rumble coloring competition.

http://dreamwritepublishing.ca/retail/competitions/rumbles-coloring-competition

I also had postcards for my e-book, The Rython Kingdom’s front cover on display with the Smashwords link on the back – http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/214247

The weather was kind with lots of sunshine and with Linda and Tammy, whose book was launched we had a great day conversing with some very interesting people. At day’s end we were tired after packing up the boxes of books so indulged in a quick fast food meal in the hotel. Having plenty of time to check out we slept late before our trip home. I managed to sew a couple of Rumble hand puppets on the road, which got a few looks from other travellers but it did help the five-hour drive pass quicker.

How far have you traveled for your book sales?

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