Thursday, August 18, 2011

My name is Jessica and I'm a Jane Austen Addict

"Hello, my name is Jessica and I'm a Jane Austen-aholic."
Now everyone say "Hello Jessica":
"Hello Jessica."
The Best movie version of P&P.
Yes I admit that I am addicted to anything Jane Austen: books, movies, sequels, fan fiction, etc. This all started when my friend Jessi J and I watched the Pink Pride and Prejudice, also known as the LDS version. I believe it was my Junior year of high school and since then I've been hooked. After watching the movie I read the book which Jessi gave me as a Christmas present, then we watched the other movies like Sense and Sensibility where Alan Rickman plays Colonel Brandon, I think this is the only movie that he actually plays a good guy, but if there are others please let me know because I really like him as an actor. I don't remember the first time I watched the six hour P&P with Colin Firth but that is history because I will admit that I've seen the movie hundreds of times, but I can't help myself I love Mr. Darcy, I named my teddy bear that I like to cuddle up with Mr. Darcy, as well as my beautiful laptop. I know pathetic right?
All this started because of my wonderful neighbors, they're the ones that put me in the direction of majoring in Creative Writing, and I thank them.
My annotated copy of P&P
But since eleventh grade this has exploded into something more. I have all the Jane Austen books including five copies of P&P, which includes an annotated version. I have a completed works of Jane Austen in one beautifully bound book, a complete set of all of Jane Austen's major works that I got second hand, and all of the books that either I bought or were given to me as gifts. I also have sequels to the Jane Austen novels that other people have written, and almost all of the movie versions of all of Jane Austen's works, even some silly ones like Bride and Prejudice. I think that I've seen all of the movies based off of Austen's novels such as Lost in Austen, but I refuse to buy that, to a Hindu version of Emma, which I had not realized was in Hindu.
If anyone feels the need to get me a present you  could get me the Annotated Persuasion, the Pride and Prejudice Graphic Novel which just makes me laugh, the Black and White Pride and Prejudice movie, which is really cheesy and funny, or pretty much any of the sequels. I've been wanting to read the diary series by Amanda Grange they are "Diarys" of the heroes in Jane Austen's major works. One of my favorite series that I have read were by Pamela Aiden it is a trilogy of Pride and Prejudice from Darcy's point of view. I read them and loved them, or course they were written by a woman so I don't really feel like it does Darcy the credit he deserves, I think that there needs to be a book written from Darcy's point of view by an actual man, that is one that would be interesting to read. If you are worried that I might have a certain book or movie, please ask me and I'll let you know whether you should get it for me or not. ;)
A couple of semesters ago I was also able to take a Jane Austen/Virginia Woolf class at SUU. I was able to read Emma and Mansfield Park for the first time. Now I have listened to all of Jane Austen's major works on audiobook, and have all of them on audiobook so that I can listen to them whenever I please, but there are still a few I have yet to read, but I'm working on it. This includes Sense and Sensibility and her Juvenilia works, I'm looking hopeful toward next summer to actually read these.
What I have been into lately, well pretty much ever since I started becoming an Austen-aholic is fan fiction, which include sequels to Austen's various novels, the novels from different point of views: Mr Darcy's Diary for example, and even some crazy ones such as Mr Darcy, Vampyre. However, I refuse to read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. No way will I read that book.
Right now I've been into the Mr and Mrs Darcy Mystery Series. The series starts at The Darcy's wedding and moves on from there. This series brings together romance, murder, adultery, and paranormal all into one. They're somewhat silly, but I can't help myself, once in a while I need an easy read for pure entertainment, and this definitely helps fill that quota. My mom likes to help me in my endeavor by bringing home audiobooks for me such as Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict which is about a woman from modern day California who wakes up in Regency England to discover that it wasn't exactly like she imagined full of gentlemen and love, but is instead filled with chamber pots, a bath every couple of weeks, and jerks. However in the end she finds herself back in California to discover that she does love the man she was fighting with at the beginning of the novel.
I know that I go through my different phases, heck I did a previous post on this very subject, but even though most of my obsessions eventually faded away: aka Twilight, Spice Girls, etc. some of my obsessions may have faded but are still there such as Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Grease, etc. Jane Austen is one obsession that I don't believe will ever really fade away. I know better than to expect to find me an exact replica of Mr. Darcy, I don't think that I could really handle Darcy all that well, but hopefully someday I will find the Mr. Darcy I've been waiting for. Gosh that sounds cheesy. Maybe that is why I love the stories as much as I do. I'm 23 and in Utah standards that's old enough to be a spinster, which is very similar to Jane Austen's time, but I know I'm not ready to fall in love. No I have lots of things to do before I even consider marriage, and as many of you know it has taken me a long time to come to this conclusion, maybe I'll be like Anne Elliot from Persuasion and I'll have Captain Wentworth walk back into my life at 27. Or I'll be like Elinor Dashwood from Sense and Sensibility and fall in love with Edward Ferras only to discover that even though he loves me that he was already promised to another woman, of course in the end his fiancee will fall for someone richer and he'll come find me and ask me to be his. I once hoped that I would be like 17 year old Catherine Morland and go on vacation and fall in love with Henry Tilney, but my vivid imagination gets carried away and I end up coming up with impossible solutions to why Henry's mother died and I get sent on a long trip all alone, to end with Mr Tilney arriving at my home weeks later to apologize for his anger and admit that there was some truth to what I had imagined.
Maybe someday I'll be able to write a story about how I fell in love. Someday I would love to be the next Jane Austen. As for now I'll just live through the different stories while still living my own story. Who knows where it will take me next? I think my next Jane Austen post should be a list of all of the Jane Austen works, and all the fan fiction that I have read. That would be a long post in itself, but I feel since my blog URL is that I should divulge my Austen addiction once in a while on my blog. We'll see ;)


natalie johansen said...

i love this post :) and i'm glad that your obsession stemmed from my family's love for jane austen!

i am partial to anne elliot, by the way. captain wentworth is one of the BEST of jane austen's men, so i would take her place any day!

i also understand about being a mormon "spinster," especially because i'm further along than you are :) but the great thing is that it's not that bad! in fact, life is pretty darn great, wouldn't you agree? once you're married, you're (hopefully) married forever, so it's best to enjoy singlehood while we can.

Sproatmeal said...

I love the LDS Pride and Prejudice. So fun. Haven't seen some of those other ones, though, and I think Sense and Sensibility is actually my favorite Jane Austen. I feel like it has the most depth to it.

I actually really want to read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Looks really fun. That murder mystery series looks fun, too. I should check it out.

When you go to Europe, you HAVE to go to Bath and some of those other Jane Austen sites. I visited her museum in Bath, and that was pretty cool, but I didn't go anywhere else. I bet you could do a whole Jane Austen tour.

By the way, Mr. Darcy won't become Mr. Darcy until you've been married to him for awhile. No one REALLY gets like that without a wife first....

Lucashell said...

I don't blame you I do love Mr. Darcy... I love her writing she such a romantic..

Berty Bell said...

I really don't know what to say...that was rather interesting. I'm glad that the Johansen's instilled in you a love for literature. Maybe someday I will read one of her books. Sheesh - you almost convinced me! ;)