Treats Not Tricks This Halloween:
An Interview with Victoria Kincaid
By Barbara Tiller Cole and Victoria Kincaid
I am excited to have a special Halloween treat for you--An interview with Victoria Kincaid! Her latest story may ‘trick’ your idea of Charlotte Lucas. In reading her latest book I had a new appreciation for an unsung heroine in Pride and Prejudice and new insights into her character.
BTC: Victoria, thanks for taking the time to visit us here at Darcyholic Diversions. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
VK: I’m originally from the Philadelphia suburbs and I now live in McLean VA (outside Washington DC). I’m married with two kids. My daughter is sophomore in college; she loves it, but I really miss her. My son is a junior in high school. I read a lot—it’s my primary form of relaxation. But given my day job, my writing career, and my parenting responsibilities, I don’t have a lot of time for other hobbies at this point. Right now I’m also organizing a JAFF Reader/Writer Get Together, which will be near me November 8-10. I’m looking forward to meeting people I only know digitally.
BTC: I have been a part of several get togethers! I which I could come to yours, but I have another commitment at that time. (Do you have to include the details about the event in this interview? If so answer the following..) Can you give us the particulars about the event in case anyone has not yet heard about it and is able to attend?
VK: It’ll be November 8-10 near Washington DC. Unfortunately the registration is closed, but we may have another one. If anyone is interested, they should join the Facebook group and watch out for future information. I’m looking forward to it. Writing can be a lonely profession; so it’s wonderful to meet readers and fellow writers.
BTC: I hope you have a wonderful get together. I planned several events while living in Atlanta area, including 2 weekend get togethers and participation by 27 authors at the Decatur Book Festival. Also, I had a job for around 7 years which allowed me to travel the country and had smaller get togethers in Phoenix, Boston, and Southern California! It great to meet your variety authors, and to meet the readers who love your stories.
I hope to have a gathering either before or after the Jane Austen Festival in Louisville next year!
So tell us how you started to write?
VK: Like most writers, I’ve been writing my whole life; but for a long time I was primarily a playwright. I still teach playwriting.
BTC: I have a dear friend who is head of the drama department at a university. I worked with my husband for a number of years producing industrial theatre and events, and was a music major who performed in musicals and operas, so glad to know about your background.
VK: I only write novels now. Switching to novel writing was a little tricky at first. In plays, most of the story is revealed through dialogue—which can be hard to do well. I was so happy that novel writing allowed me to reveal things through description, inner thoughts, etc. The novel writer has a lot more tools at her disposal. Austen’s writing is particularly good at revealing character through dialogue, which made her writing easier to emulate for me.
BTC: I can see how her writing style would make the transition easier. But I also know that showing not telling is always the best way to go. So your skill with dialogue makes your stories much more interesting.
So you explained a little bit about why you chose Jane Austen, but tell us more.
VK: All writers start as readers. The writing impulse springs from that “what if?” that the reader asks herself. What if the protagonist had done x instead of y? What if the protagonist was a woman instead of a man? What if we found out what happened after the story ended? What if this character met that character from another story? What if the character was a scientist instead of a soldier? And so on.
Austen’s world is a particularly fertile ground for these what if scenarios. I started reading Pride and Prejudice variations out of idle curiosity. Then I got hooked (I literally bought a Kindle so I could save money by buying ebook JAFF instead of print). Then I started thinking of my own what ifs for Pride and Prejudice. And now here I am! When Charlotte Became Romantic is my 15th Pride and Prejudice variation—and I don’t seem to be in any danger of running out of ideas.
BTC: It is always fascinating to me to learn how writers found the genre! And you are no exception! So what was the inspiration to write about Charlotte?
VK: When you think about it, Pride and Prejudice is full of women who are confined by their place in society. Elizabeth’s refusal of these limitations is one of the things we love about her. But I am always interested in those other women. What would happen if their circumstances were a little different and they had the opportunity to assert themselves?
That is how I ended up with a series I didn’t intend to write. The first two books, When Mary Met the Colonel and When Jane Got Angry, describe two Bennet sisters deciding to defy conventions at critical points in their lives. When I had the idea for When Charlotte Became Romantic, I realized I was writing an unintended series about these “other” women in Pride and Prejudice.
BTC: I have enjoyed your books thus far and will look forward to more! Would you like to give us a hint about your next project?
VK: Good question! I’ve written two modern variations (Darcy in Hollywood and President Darcy) and was just getting started with another one when a Regency era plot bunny bowled me over and demanded to be written. So the next will be set in the Regency—with Darcy and Elizabeth as the main characters. Maybe after that I’ll be able to write the modern version. 😊
BTC: Well, I want to thank you for sitting down to tea with me! Please stop back by when your next book is released!
Victoria is giving away an ecopy of her book to a lucky commenter! Extra entries are given for adding your name to this blog, liking my author page on facebook. Sharing this post on Facebook or twitter.
A Pride and Prejudice Variation: When Charlotte Becomes Romantic
In the original Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth Bennet’s friend, Charlotte Lucas marries the silly and obsequious clergyman, Mr. Collins. But what if fate—and love—intervened?
Desperate to escape her parents’ constant criticism, Charlotte has accepted a proposal from Mr. Collins despite recognizing his stupid and selfish nature. But when a mysterious man from her past visits Meryton for the Christmas season, he arouses long-buried feelings and causes her to doubt her decision.
James Sinclair’s mistakes cost him a chance with Charlotte three years ago, and he is devastated to find her engaged to another man. Honor demands that he step aside, but his heart will not allow him to leave Meryton. Their mutual attraction deepens; however, breaking an engagement is not a simple matter and scandal looms. If they are to be happy, they must face her parents’ opposition, Lady Catherine’s disapproval, dangerous figures from James’s past...and Charlotte’s nagging feeling that maybe she should just marry Mr. Collins.
Charlotte had forsworn romance years ago; is it possible for her to become romantic again?