Recently I was lucky enough to have a chance to get together with four of my fellow Jane Austen Fan Fiction (JAFF) authors and a number of JAFF readers. It was a very fun day! One of the questions we discussed was what other kinds of books do JAFF readers read? There are some readers whom I guess (based on the volume of JAFF they read) probably don’t have time to read much else (and good for you!), but then I would guess others read a wider variety of books.
I went through a phase where I avidly consumed JAFF and read everything I could get my hands on. But, now I spend a lot of my day thinking about how to get Elizabeth and Darcy together—as well as such questions as whether “stoop” is a word used by the British (it’s not) or if Jane Austen ever used the word “exemplar” (she didn’t). It’s hard to work up enthusiasm for spending all of my precious little reading time revisiting Meryton and Pemberley yet again.
I do read JAFF, but not in nearly the quantities that I did before. Now I vary my literary diet with a number of other genres, although mostly still romance, including, YA, M/M, contemporary, Regency, suspense, paranormal, and sometimes science fiction. I do miss reading more JAFF. Man, do I wish I had more time to read! (Don’t we all?) But then I’d have less time to write. :(
The nice thing is that reading in these other genres inspires and informs my JAFF writing. Reading Regency romances obviously gives me a lot of background in the customs and society of the time period and sparks plot ideas. I do love some paranormal romance authors, and recently I’ve been thinking about how to incorporate paranormal elements (not zombies!) into a P&P variation. I haven’t hit on the right plot yet, but there are some really fun paranormal Austenesque books out there.
Contemporary and YA authors have both inspired my JAFF writing as well. I have a plot for a contemporary P&P all worked out in my head; I just haven’t had time to write it. And I actually wrote a YA version of P&P – as a screenplay -- about ten years ago. Someday I’d like to adapt it into a YA novel.
I would guess that my reading tastes are a little more varied than most JAFF readers, but I am very interested in knowing what my fellow JAFF fans read. Is it mainly JAFF? Or JAFF and Regency/historical romance? Or if you go outside JAFF, do you mainly read romance or do you read other genres as well (mysteries, thrillers?). Respond here or drop me an email sometime to let me know (I love to hear from readers!).
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About the Author
The author of best-selling Pride and Prejudice variations, historical romance writer Victoria has a Ph.D. in English literature and has taught composition to unwilling college students. Today she is a freelance writer/editor who teaches business writing to willing office professionals and tries to give voice to the demanding cast of characters in her head.
She lives in Virginia with an overly affectionate cat, two children who are learning how much fun Austen’s characters can be, and a husband who fortunately is not jealous of Mr. Darcy. A lifelong Austen fan, Victoria has read more Jane Austen variations and sequels than she can count – and confesses to an extreme partiality for the Colin Firth miniseries version of Pride and Prejudice.