Tuesday, February 21, 2012

1st Blogoversary: Interview with Elizabeth Aston & Giveaway!

Elizabeth, welcome to Hardcover Feedback! Thank you SO much for being a part of my 1st Blogoversary Celebration! What or who made the biggest influence on you wanting to become a writer? 
My lovely, very aged tutor at Oxford, Hugo Dyson, who was one of the Inklings. I read him an essay I wrote about Coleridge, and he said, ‘Lizzy, you’re going to be a writer.’ How could I let him down?

What was the first book you ever wrote about and was it ever published?
CHILDREN OF CHANCE, the first Mountjoy novel – it turned out to be a prequel to five more books about the wicked and wonderful world of the Mountjoys and their friends, all living in and around an apparently seemly English cathedral city.

Do you have any writing habits that people might find unusual?
If I’m writing at the computer, I diminish the text so I can’t read what I’m writing – that shuts up my Inner
Critic. But more and more now I dictate into a digital recorder and then use voice recognition to transcribe
the words. I love that, I’m not tethered to a keyboard any more, and it frees what I’m writing.

Do you have a favorite character or one that is especially close to your heart?
Valdemar Mountjoy. He’s not what I’d call an amiable man, more a force of nature and he’s rarely at a loss
for words or action.

What is the best gift you have ever received and who gave it to you?
A portable typewriter (that dates me!) which my father gave me before I hit my teens.

What is something that you have always wanted to do, but just haven't gotten around to it yet?
Ride Andalusian horses in the Alpujarras in Spain.

What is your all-time favorite book?
Pride and Prejudice, of course.

Other than yourself, who is your favorite author?
It changes, according to mood, but Patrick O’Brian would always be high on the list – I adore Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin.

If a TV show was based on your life, what would the theme song be and why?
What a terrifying thought. Pass! I really can’t think of a song that could possibly reflect my life.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
Theatre, listening to music, eating out with friends, walking and sometimes just day-dreaming. And
reading, needless to say – in print, on my Kindle or in audio form.

Are you an early bird or a night owl?
A complete lark, which is unfortunate in a family of owls.

What is your favorite TV show and/or movie?
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier Spy – the old BBC TV version with Alec Guinness as Smiley. I didn’t like the recent film. Slow and not at all Le CarrĂ©, it missed the whole feel of the book, which I also love.

If you had the opportunity to go anywhere you wanted, at anytime in history, where would you go and why?
Bosworth field, 1485, to see where Richard III’s vanished crown ended up.

You are given an unlimited budget to plan your ultimate party. Please describe it (i.e. Where would it take place? Who would be on the guest list? What would be on the menu? Would there be a theme? etc.).
Place: Terrace overlooking the Mediterranean – maybe with Vesuvius hovering nearby. Balmy evening, with a breeze coming off an azure sea.

Theme: If you’re real, come as a fictional character; if you’re fictional, come as a real person.

Guest list – tricky one. Hmm. I’ll certainly have Jeeves there as butler...
…Dear friends, you are invited to dine and meet:
Mr and Mrs Darcy. Horace, the Roman poet. Oscar Wilde (although he might monopolize the conversation). He can sit next to the waspish Dowager Countess of Grantham, on a visit from Downton Abbey. Albert Campion, my favourite golden age ‘tec. The empress Theodora. Count Dracula? No, I’d rather not be on the menu. Instead, Clerick de Winter (aka Milady) will bring a touch of wickedness to the table. Shakespeare’s Beatrice (Benedict can come, too). Vivaldi (he’ll provide the music), and Lucile Duff Gordon, inventor of sexy underwear, who can tell us about her experience on the Titanic. 

Menu: Italian, I think, beginning with tagliolini al limone and ending with something lusciously chocolately.

What are you currently working on?
Two historicals, an Elizabeth Aston: THE SECRET LIFE OF MR DARCY, set in 1802, which is earlier
than my other books about the Darcy family, and an Elizabeth Edmondson dark mystery: CASTLE OF
LIES, set in northern England in 1933 and 1940.

Where can people connect with you online?
@elizabeth_aston, @elizedmondson, www.elizabeth-aston.com http://www.elizabeth-edmondson.com/EE/ or Facebook – Elizabeth Edmondson Aston


Elizabeth has graciously offered to give away a print copy of her book Mr. Darcy's Dream if the winner is from Canada, the United Kingdom, or the United States. If the winner is not from those three countries they may choose an ebook of any of the Aston titles listed on Atticabooks.com.

To enter, all you have to do is follow this blog in at least one way, complete the mandatory entry and then complete whichever extra entries you want in the Rafflecopter form below. Giveaway is open internationally!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blogaholic Designs”=


  1. Happy Blogoversary, and thank you for inviting me for an interview. I just wanted to say how much I like the pictures you've used to illustrate my answers.

    1. Thanks Elizabeth! I am SO glad that you like the pictures!

  2. Thanks for your answers! I'd invite Chaucer to dinner!

  3. I loved discovering what the author is writing next. Thanks!

  4. I love author interviews and just love these questions... now I am busy thinking who I would invite to dinner!

  5. Loved the best gift..really touching.

  6. I'm thrilled to meet Elizabeth Aston here. I found her comments on her tutor, first book written, and writing habits fascinating! And her party-attendees intriguing and loved the lavish description. I look forward to diving into her books.

    Mary Kay

  7. I love P&P.....any book has to be good with Mr. Darcy in it!

  8. I found most intereting what the one thing she wants to do is: riding specific type of horses in a specific place in Spain. It made me want to find out what those two specific things were.

  9. I am happy to find someone else that enjoyed the BBC version of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier Spy. I have friends that just don't appreciate it like I do. BBC just has a way of bringing the important elements out from a book and really capturing the meaning and subtleties.


  10. "If you’re real, come as a fictional character; if you’re fictional, come as a real person."

    That cracked me up! :D

    eve @ essence of eve