Friday, February 20, 2015

Literary Heroines Blog Party - 2015

It’s the time of the Literary Heroines Blog Party once again! Life is pretty full at the moment (as it ever is!), but this is a gala occasion. During the 2014 party I met several people for the first time whom I have since been blessed to begin building wonderful and encouraging friendships with and, hence, I felt the time should most certainly be marked in a celebratory fashion. :) So here are my tag answers for 2015…

And Kellie, thanks so much for hosting—your lovely party is such a highlight of the year!

~ The Questions ~

1. Introduce yourself! Divulge your life's vision, likes, dislikes, aspirations, or something completely random! ~ As a daughter and sister, loving to read and write—with a passion for masterfully crafted story—my greatest desire is to one day (Lord willing) be a wife, mother, and author simultaneously. I find history fascinating; and I love zoos and studying the geography of the world. I love the color blue—French blue, turquoise, periwinkle and sapphire. I love some far-flung places and I love where I live. I love and am thankful for my wonderful family and for my dear friends (new and old)! Most of all I dearly love and am thankful to the One who has bought me—body and soul—claiming me as His own. 

2. What, to you, forms the essence of a true heroine? ~ Feminine and gracious, she is clear-eyed, but genuinely charitable. She loves much. She is comfortable leaving time and silence to ripen her words. She faces her faults and weaknesses—and is known for her discretion, fortitude, perseverance, honesty, strength, and forgiveness.

3. Share (up to) four heroines of literature that you most admire and relate to.

Margaret Hale – For how she strives and perseveres–and for how she learns to rest

Anne Shirley – Because she’s Anne…

Emma – This is a fairly new one (over the past year), but I realized what a true heroine she is as she learns from and faces up to her faults

Theria (The Perilous Seat by Caroline Dale Snedeker) – For her—in a sense—clarity of vision and steadfastness of soul

4. Five of your favorite historical novels? ~ Heart of Darkness by Josef Conrad, North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell, Persuasion by Jane Austen, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, and The Armourer’s House by Rosemary Sutcliff.

5. Out of those five books who is your favorite main character and why? ~ Margaret Hale. (Along with Anne Elliot in Persuasion) she’s one of my greatest heroines. (I’ve shared a good bit about her struggles and challenges and why I love her and her story so much here.) 

6. Out of those five books who is your favorite secondary character and why? ~ Oh dear… How did I manage to get Thornton and Wentworth and Rochester all mixed up in the same question? Thornton, definitely Mr. Thornton—with Captain Wentworth running a close second.

7. If you were to plan out your dream vacation, where would you travel to - and what would you plan to do there? ~ I was able to go on it (again!) this last summer. :) The Black Hills, the Badlands, Wyoming, Yellowstone…the Tetons! I had a marvelous, marvelous time traveling with cousins—and I was able to soak up and breathe in story atmosphere so that I can feel it still growing and running out my fingertips.

I’d also love to see the Colorado mountains and Wyoming in spring someday. And, of course, there’s always India and the Taj Mahal. That would be pretty incredible, too.

8. What is your favorite time period and culture to read about? ~ In fiction the 1800’s. In non-fiction ancient Egypt.

9. You have been invited to perform at the local charity concert. Singing, comedy, recitation - what is your act comprised of? ~ I would love to do some sort of ballet number, but I haven’t done it in public for awhile, so probably something on the piano or fiddle.

10. If you were to attend a party where each guest was to portray a heroine of literature, who would you select to represent? ~ Lizzy Bennet. :)

11. What are your sentiments on the subject of chocolate? ~ 90% dark with a glass of milk…the perfect writing pick-me-up!

12. Favorite author(s)? ~ Jane Austen, Josef Conrad, Edmund Spenser, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Caroline Dale Snedeker, J.R.R. Tolkien, John Buchan, C.S. Lewis, P.G. Wodehouse, G.K. Chesterton, B.J. Chute, Charles W. Whistler, the Brontë sisters, Elizabeth Gaskell, Louisa May Alcott, L.M. Montgomery, Rosemary Sutcliff, Dickens…you get the idea. :)

13. Besides essentials, what would you take on a visiting voyage to a foreign land? ~ My camera! (or is that an essential?) and my butterfly identification guide. Someday I’d love to see some of the tropical Mexican and South American species.

14. In which century were most of the books you read written? ~ The 19th (though the 20th runs a very close second).

15. In your opinion, the ultimate hero in literature is… ~ Last year’s selection holds true, but to mix it up a little (and since he was already mentioned above):

Mr. Thornton

And also (new to this last year!):

Flynn Rider/Eugene (…he’s hemi-demi-semi literary, isn’t he? ;))

16. Describe your ideal dwelling place. ~ There are so many wonderful places I don’t know that I can make up my mind. But I do love an airy feel with light tones or honey colored woodwork. And to be quite comfortable, there would be plenty of books about (and pictures) and some plants outside—especially roses and basil and garlic and peonies. 

17. Sum up your fashion style in a short sentence. ~ Comfortable, feminine, utilitarian, and oft-times historically inspired.

18. Have you ever wanted to change a character’s name? ~ Yes, actually. Valancy’s in Montgomery’s Blue Castle. It really trips you up, but then it’s supposed to…and I’m not sure what a good alternative would be…and, ultimately, I love the story to bits regardless!

19. In your opinion, the most dastardly villain of all literature is... ~ A recent selection from this past year: Jape Waltzer in Peace Like a River. It’s a coming-of-age story—and he’s not even exactly the ultimate ‘villain’ of the piece—but he is wicked, unsettling, unpleasant, and a bit disturbing.

20. Three favorite non-fiction books? ~ Job: A Son for Glory by Toby Sumpter, The Christian Imagination edited by Leland Ryken, and Pharaohs and Kings by David M. Rohl.

21. Your duties met for the day, how would you choose to spend a carefree summer afternoon? ~ Writing!

22. Create a verbal sketch of your dream hat - in such a way as will best portray your true character. ~ I’m not a tremendous hat person (though I do tend to wear stocking hats almost all day in the winter and occasionally baseball hats when necessary outdoors in the summer), but I do love wearing cowls and scarves. And, of course, in films I love bonnets of all shapes and sizes! ;)

23. Share the most significant event(s) that have marked your life in the past year. ~ It’s been an incredibly full year, but one of the hugest happenings was my amazing trip west last summer. A second is in seeing how much my writing is expanding and changing. I’ve learned a lot, and I’ve read and seen some things that have helped me sort out my current work in progress—setting it on fire. It’s somersaulted tremendously from what it was a year ago and I’m thrilled through with the excitement of it. It’s also been a tremendous year of growth and changes—changes in building new and old friendships. There have been difficult times and moments throughout, but overall it’s been a great and weighty blessing.

24. Share the Bible passage(s) that have been most inspiring to you recently. ~ Psalm 21. I was thinking particularly of how it fits with all the ones before it (particularly Psalms 2 and 18) and just before Psalm 22. Viewing it through the lens of its ultimate fulfillment in Christ—our suffering King—it’s stunning!

“The King shall have joy in Your strength, O Lord;
And in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!
You have given him his heart’s desire,
And have not withheld the request of his lips. Selah

For You meet him with the blessings of goodness;
You set a crown of pure gold upon his head.
He asked life from You, and You gave it to him—
Length of days forever and ever.
His glory is great in Your salvation;
Honor and majesty You have placed upon him.
For You have made him most blessed forever;
You have made him exceedingly glad with Your presence.
For the king trusts in the Lord,
And through the mercy of the Most High he shall not be moved…”
Psalm 21:1-7

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