Tag Archives: Pride and Prejudice

Et Tu, Brute. Betrayal and Other Fun Topics.

Ahh, the Ides of March. Casey here, wishing you a happy Friday.

Unless of course, your name is Julius Caesar and the year is 44 BC, then you’re about to have a really bad March 15th. To the Romans, the ides didn’t mean anything sinister. The ides simply marked the middle of each month. That’s it.

But thanks to Brutus and the Roman Senate, it has come to symbolize the date of Caesar’s assasination – beware the Ides of March!

History is loaded with betrayals: Brutus, Benedict Arnold, and whoever ratted out the Spartans at the Battle of Thermopylea. In literature, betrayal is commonly used as a plot twist. I’ve used it once or twice.

Betrayal exists in so many forms: Family backstabbing, corporate greed, an apprentice killing the master, friendships gone sour, betraying your country. Even betraying your own ideals. So many flavors and all of them leave a bitter taste in the mouth.

But, as a writer, you should never be afraid to go down the dark path. Traitors have a place in fiction. In romance, it can drive the hero and heroine apart. It can also bring them back together. Depending on the genre, your protagonist can be ruined by betrayal or uplifted (or both!).

Case in point – Casey’s Top Fictional Betrayers (not in any special order):

1. Fredo Corleone - The Godfather by Mario Puzo. When Michael Corleone realizes that his own brother has betrayed him, it’s heartbreaking and ultimately destroys what little soul Michael has left. In true mafia style, Fredo ends up swimming with the fishes – the execution ordered by his brother Michael.

2. Edmund Pevensie -The Lion, The Witch, and The Wadrobe by C. S. Lewis. If you think only mafia families can backstab each other – wrong! Even children’s stories aren’t immune to betrayers. Edmund is influenced by the White Witch (and her endless supply of Turkish Delight) and he betrays his siblings. But with Aslan’s intervention, not all is lost. Edmund redeems himself and joins Peter, Susan and Lucy to defeat the witch.

3. Anakin Skywalker - The Stars Wars Saga by George Lucas. Anakin doesn’t listen to Yoda and lets his anger consume him. Yes, he betrays the Jedi Order and the Republic, but Anakin majorly betrays himself by turning his back on his master and training. Not to mention, that whole “I am your father” incident and literallay lopping off his own son’s hand!

4. Mr. Wickham - Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. The most odious of betrayers, Mr. Wickham uses falsehoods under the guise of friendship to lure Elizabeth Bennet into seriously misjudging Mr. Darcy. And then he runs off with Lydia Bennet, the youngest daughter!

5. Thomas Barrow and Sara O’Brien - Downtown Abbey by Julian Fellowes. These two are the dynamic duo of backstabbing. Not only do they cause subtle and sometimes serious mayhem (hello bar of soap!) both upstairs and downstairs, in season three, they embark on backstabbing each other!

6. Saruman the WhiteThe Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien. Nothing stings worse than discovering that the leader of your wizard order is a turncoat. Poor Gandalf. Not even he can foresee what’s about to happen. After discovering that the One Ring has resurfaced, Gandalf consults the one person he thinks he can trust. Instead he’s imprisoned by Saruman leaving Frodo and company in dire straits.

Imagine how different each of these stories would have been without these acts of betrayal. In every case, the traitor has served a purpose, providing a lesson to the hero/heroine and the reader (or viewer) as well.

So remember, while it may be uncomfortable to contemplate, betrayal is a writer’s best friend.

What say you? Who are your top choices for fictional betrayers? And have you used betrayal in your stories?

All You Need to Know About Valentine’s Day — With a Giveaway!

Happy Valentine’s Day, my lovelies! I hope this day, no matter how you celebrate or who you celebrate with, is wonderful. Read through to the end, because there will be a special gift for one lucky commenter.

TRUE-LOVE-Sweethearts[1]I’m going to let you in on a little secret (we just love those things around here!). Everything you need to know about Valentine’s Day — or love in general — can be learned from a box of Sweethearts (f/k/a Tiny Conversation Hearts). As far as candy goes, these are pretty bland, even a bit chalky. And they have a sad and conspicuous lack of chocolate.

But they come in pretty pastel colors, and each has a pithy little motto: Be Mine. Hot Stuff. True Love. Hug Me. Kiss Me. Even Boogie. Now that you mention it, I do feel like dancing.Thanks! The Necco candy people clearly understand romance and the art of keeping it simple. What more do we really need?

IMG_20130214_060434Leave me a comment about Valentine’s Day, love, conversation hearts, keeping it simple, the new Bridget Jones book coming out in the fall, Joe Manganiello, or anything else that strikes your fancy, and you’ll be entered in a random drawing for a fabulous prize package: a hardcover copy of Pride and Prejudice, a lovely Celtic Heart bookmark, a box of Sweethearts, and a dark chocolate raspberry Godiva chocolate bar. Contest ends at midnight Sunday, February 17th, and I’ll announce the winner next Thursday. Good luck, and Game On!

It’s a Mad,Mad, Mad, Mad Lib!

Hello, loves! Suze here. So glad to see you.

Today’s post is just for fun. Did you love Mad Libs as a kid? I did, and I still do. So how about we do a romance version? No reading through to the end of this post or your Mad Lib won’t be as good! Here’s how it works:

Write down a word, romance-y or silly, for each of the following entries:

  1. noun
  2. body part
  3. verb
  4. noun
  5. noun
  6. past tense verb
  7. verb
  8. plural noun
  9. plural noun
  10. emotion
  11. past tense verb
  12. past tense verb
  13. adverb (yay! you get to use adverbs, guilt free!)
  14. adverb (yay! another one!)
  15. body part
  16. body part
  17. verb
  18. verb
  19. plural verb
  20. noun

Got your words? Great! Now take them and plug them into the following paragraph from a classic novel. Sorry, all you purists out there! I mean no disrespect to Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy–well, maybe only a little. But it’s a loving kind of disrespect.

Elizabeth, feeling all the more than common ___1___ and anxiety of his ___2___, now forced herself to speak; and immediately, though not very fluently, gave him to ___3___ that her ___4___ had undergone so material a change, since the ___5___ to which he ___6___, as to make her ___7___ with gratitude and ___8___ his present ___9___. The ___10___ which this reply produced, was such as he had probably never ___11___ before; and he ___12___ himself on the occasion as ___13___ and as ___14___ as a man violently in love can be supposed to do. Had Elizabeth been able to encounter his ___15___, she might have seen how well the expression of heartfelt delight, diffused over his ___16___, became him; but, though she could not ___17___, she could ___18___, and he told her of ___19___, which, in proving of what importance she was to him, made his ___20___ more valuable.

How’d it come out? How about sharing your “creation” in the comments section? Have a lovely day, Scribelings!