Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Young Adult Scavenger Hunt

Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors...and a chance to win some awesome prizes! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize--one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in our team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 72 hours!

Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are THREE contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! We are part of the ORANGE TEAM--

but there are also teams of many different colors for chances to win whole different sets of twenty signed books!

If you'd like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt homepage. 

Scavenger Hunt Puzzle

Directions: Below, you'll notice that we've listed our favorite number. Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the teal team, and then add them up (don't worry, you can use a calculator!).

Entry Form: Once you've added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.

Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian's permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by April 3, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.

Scavenger Hunt Post

Today, we are hosting Sara B. Larson for the YA Scavenger Hunt!

Here's some information about Sara:

Sara B. Larson

Sara B. Larson is the author of the acclaimed YA fantasy DEFY trilogy: DEFY, IGNITE, and ENDURE, and the forthcoming DARK BREAKS THE DAWN. She can’t remember a time when she didn’t write books—although she now uses a computer instead of a Little Mermaid notebook. Sara lives in Utah with her husband, their children, and their Maltese, Loki. She writes in brief snippets throughout the day (while mourning the demise of naptime) and the quiet hours when most people are sleeping. Her husband claims she should have a degree in “the art of multitasking.” When she’s not mothering or writing, you can often find her at the gym repenting for her sugar addiction

Find out more information by checking out Sara's website!

Check out Sara's books here!

And here's a peek at the cover of her new book: 

SPOILER ALERT if you haven't read the series!!

At last, Alexa and King Damian are engaged to be married. But their lives are far from safe. The kingdom of Antion is under siege, and Rylan is a prisoner of the enemy. Even worse, Alexa remains at the mercy of the evil Dansiian Rafe, who controls her mind and can force Alexa to kill or harm Damian at any moment. Despite this, Alexa is determined to rescue Rylan, which soon leads her far from Damian and deep into enemy territory.

When she arrives, what awaits her is deadlier than anything she could have ever imagined: an army of black sorcerers and a horrifying plot to destroy the world as Alexa knows it. Will she be able to gather the strength to free herself, protect the love of her life, and save the land? Will there ever be true peace?

Acclaimed author Sara B. Larson has woven a stunning, romantic, and evocative finale to the Defy trilogy that is sure to leave readers breathless until the very last page.

Exclusive Content -

Here's the exclusive content that Sara sent over just for you. 

From Sarah: Last spring I did the first half of a bonus scene from the DEFY series - the wedding scene for Damian and Alexa. This time I am doing the second half of the same scene. It is obviously spoilery if someone hasn't read the series, read at your own risk. :-) 

I squeezed Alexa’s hand as King Osgand looked first to her, then me, then to the crowd gathered behind us.
“It is my honor and privilege to stand before you all today, especially King Damian and his chosen bride,” he began, his deep voice resonating all the way to the far reaches of the Grand Hall. I was fairly certain I was supposed to keep my gaze forward, but I couldn’t resist looking down at Alexa once more as King Osgand continued to speak.  She was radiant in the simple but beautiful dress she’d had made to replicate the one her mother had worn so many years before. The perfume from the flowers wreathing her dark hair mingled with that of the soap she must have used that morning to create a heady blend that had me wishing the ceremony was already over and we were alone in—
She squeezed my hand once and I snapped my gaze forward to see King Osgand looking at me expectantly, an amused gleam in his eye.
“Do you wish to declare your intent to go forward with this marriage before your people?” He prompted quietly.
“Yes, yes I do,” I immediately—and loudly—answered.
“Excellent.” King Osgand smiled at me; and though we’d fought side by side in the war as equals, I couldn’t help but feel as though I were a young boy caught at mischief for a brief moment. But then he continued, “Alexa and Damian, you may face each other and recite your vows.”
The moment her gaze met mine I nearly lost the ability to breath—let alone speak. But thankfully, she was supposed to go first.
Alexa swallowed hard, once, a telltale sheen in her hazel eyes as we faced one another. “Damian,” she began, her voice raw with emotion, “you are my safe place in the storms of life. You are the one who loves all of me, good and bad—my other half, and the one I love, more than words can express.” Her voice trembled as she continued and I had to fight the urge to gather her in my arms, hoping instead that she could feel my encouragement and love through our joined hands. “I vow today before all these witnesses that I will forever pledge my heart and my life to you. I am yours, body and soul, until both shall cease to exist.”
Her vow—which I hadn’t heard until that moment—struck such a deep chord in me, I was unable to speak for a long moment, as I tried to compose myself. Her love was the greatest gift I’d ever been given—that and the fact that we had both somehow survived my father’s reign of terror, my uncle’s monstrosities, and everything else that had tried to tear us apart. So much loss, so much pain and hurt, had brought us to this moment. And, in a bittersweet way, that only made our joy more exquisite—more precious.
“Alexa,” I finally managed, my voice nearly breaking, “I loved you long before you truly knew who I was, and I wake up every morning in awe that you somehow came to love me in return.” She squeezed my hands again, her face shining with that love, that I still couldn’t quite believe was for me. “I will spend the rest of my life cherishing you, loving you, and helping you to see how truly beautiful you are—in every way possible, inside and out. You are my dearest friend, my true family, my Queen, and my heart. And I am yours, forever. This I vow, until the end of time.”
She smiled up at me, one tear finally slipping free to slide down her scarred cheek. I tenderly wiped it away, cupping her cheek as King Osgand announced:
“In witness of their vows, I declare you husband and wife—King and Queen! You may kiss your bride!”
A cheer rose from the crowd but I could barely hear a thing over the pounding of my heart as I finally did what I had been wanting to do since I first laid eyes on Alexa walking down the aisle toward me.

I wrapped my arms around her and kissed my queen—my beautiful, amazing wife.

Enter the Contest

That was awesome! Now don't forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of signed books and more! To enter, you need to know that our favorite number is 3. Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on the orange team and you'll have all the secret code to enter for the grand prize!

Continue the Hunt

To keep going on your quest for the hunt, you need to check out the next author! Click here!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

More Janes!

So the Janies have been sitting on this little secret for a while.

But today's the day! Today we can finally share! We have the VERY BEST NEWS EVER!

It can all be summed up right here:

Yep, that's right. The Janies are going to be writing TWO MORE JANE BOOKS!




We just spent a week in our secret hideaway in Utah working on MY PLAIN JANE. We're almost halfway done with a first draft! And we are LOVING IT--Jane Eyre gives us the giggles. Because we're weird that way. And we love making each other laugh. And we love Janes!

To say that we are excited about getting to write two more books is a bit of an understatement. So we'll leave with how we really feel:


Monday, July 18, 2016

Jane's Reign: Winners!

Hello, friends!

We have spent the day poring over contest entries and we are pleased to announce our winners! 

Winners, please email us your physical addresses at ladyjanies@gmail.com so we can get your prizes out to you as soon as possible!

Day 1, for the Spread the Word Contest: Isabelle Coyne

Day 2, for The Princess Bride trivia: Sydney Clogston

Day 3, for the Poisoned Pie contest: Chelsea Ruiz
We laughed so hard when we saw this one.

Day 4, for the Best British Accent contest: Leila Rheaume

Day 5, for the Jane's Library contest: Alice Lionel

Day 6, for the Photoshop contest: Jacinda Starr

Day 7, for the Cary Elwes contest: Kimberly V

Day 8, for the You As Queen contest: Grace

Day 9, for the Hat Tips contest: Katelyn

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Jane's Reign: Day Nine

Day Nine! Today is the last day Jane's reign before our favorite queen is deposed! Don't forget that you can still enter all of our contests for our array of fun prize packs until midnight tonight. The winners will be announced tomorrow. Good luck!

Today's post is about hat tips. One of the things we had the most fun with while writing MY LADY JANE was finding places to tip our hats to our favorite movies and books. MLJ is loaded with Easter eggs. Some of them are pretty overt, (inconceivable!) and some are pretty sneaky.

Here's a list of some of the books and movies we paid tribute to in MLJ:

The Princess Bride. Obviously.
Monty Python. Because nobody expects the Monty Python.
Tangled. Who knew?
Game of Thrones. Because we too have games and thrones in our book.
Ever After. One of the best rebelling a of Cinderella ever, with the worst English accents.
Star Wars. Because all good fantasies of whatever genre owe something to Star Wars.
Shakespeare (there are actually over 50 Shakespeare quotes in MLJ, for. . . .reasons.)

And so many more!

So here's today's contest: find as many hat tips as you can in MY LADY JANE and email us a list--with the line and the page number, preferably. You'll already have an advantage in this contest if you've done our Princess Bride search. Happy hunting!

The Prize:

The biggest prize of all! The Lady Janies are currently writing our next Jane book (but, er, we can't tall you much about it yet. But it is so funny, and we're having the best time writing it!) So the prize for this contest is YOUR NAME (in some form) IN OUR NEXT BOOK. Basically, you'll get a character named after you!

Tune in tomorrow for our list of winners!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Day 8 of Jane's Reign: LadyJanie Bloopers, where we mess up a lot...

Hey there!

Today's post is short and sweet. We made a video of all the times we messed up during our research trip to England. If you were at one of our tour stops, you might have seen the video. If not... here we are making dorks of ourselves. Enjoy!

Contest: To win an awesome swag pack, tell us in the comments what you would do if you were Queen of England!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Day Seven of Jane's Reign: Gifford, Cary Elwes, Comedy and a Contest!

Hello, yon Janieville!

Today, Day Seven of Jane's Reign, we are paying tribute to her real husband, Lord Guildford Dudley, and our version of her husband, Gifford (Call him G).

Here's the real Guildford:

And here's Wesley. From Princess Bride. Because if you've read My Lady Jane, you understand how much we love Princess Bride.
                     Image result for wesley princess bride

Sometimes we picture Cary Elwes when we picture our Gifford. We often get asked how our characters match up with the historical ones, so below we have compiled the similarities and differences between historical Guildford and our own beloved G.

Guildford Dudley
Gifford (Call him G)
Like 9, dude.
Two. Stan and Gertie.
Hair Color
Chestnut (of the Chestnut Steed Variety)
Conniving Father?
Yes. Evil too.
Did He Eagerly Anticipate Marriage to Jane Grey?
Wedding Night?
Got food poisoning.
Got sloshed.
Carved Jane’s name in the Tower of London?
Yep. Twice.

Yep. Once. Before he was saved by a… weasel? Large squirrel? No, cat-snake!
Yes, he is. From sun up to sun down.
Is Shakespeare?
We’re merely authors, not Shakespeare experts. Who are we to say? Anyone could have been the real Shakespeare. Heck, my grandma might be Shakespeare.
Was handsome?
He would never dream of saying so. He simply knows his friends have called him handsome on several occasions.
Loved reading books?
Truthfully, he preferred nibbling books rather than reading them.  What’s the harm in that? You’ve heard of people devouring books, haven’t you?
*Ducks as Jane hurls book toward head*
Was beheaded?
Yes. And burned.
Read the book!

Now for the contest! First, tell us your favorite Cary Elwes movie in the comments. Last, email us  (at ladyjanies@gmail.com) your favorite pic of Cary Elwes. 

We'll choose our favorite from the entries, and you will receive a signed copy of Cary Elwes book! (Reminder that all winners will be announced on July 18th). 

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Jane's Reign : Day Six

Hi there! We're on day six out of nine in Jane's Reign! Don't forget, you can still enter our contests for any of the first eight days, (especially that one where you spread the word about Jane's Reign--that one you can do multiple times) so keep checking back!

Today we planned to tell you a little bit about the fashion in the time of Tudor England. And we will, we so will. But in preparing for our contest today (which involves either dressing up or Photoshopping), we ended up Photoshopping ourselves into paintings of our characters, and we have not stopped laughing about this ever since. So to illustrate what we mean about the fashion of 1553, I give you. . .

 Jodi as Lady Jane Grey

She's very sneaky about books.
A couple of things to note: This is a fairly elaborate version of the lady's dress in the sixteenth century. (It actually comes from a painting of young Princess Elizabeth. The key elements of these gowns were the square, open necklines, the super stiff front bodice piece, (which does NOT look comfortable) and inner and outer layers in both the gown and the sleeves. No playing tennis in this dress! Movement actually seems pretty difficult altogether. The women also wore these moon-shaped headpieces / hoods, with long black cloth in the back to cover their hair. Jewelry: a tons of rings, a pearl-encrusted belt, a HUGE broach and a double looping of pearls around the neck.

Fetching, am I right?

Let's move on to the men. Modeling the outfit and a super sexy widow's peak is . . .

Brodi as Gifford (Guildford) Dudley

She is rocking those tights.
This ensemble features a precursor to the BIG SHAKESPEAREAN RUFF, both at the neck and the wrists. There's a lot of textures in these outfits: a black velvet doublet, a satin overshirt, a fur-lined cape, and silk tights. Yes, it was men who first wore tights--and high heels, for that matter.  For us, though, the item that stands out of all of this finery is the pumpkin pants. The bigger the better, it seems, to make your thighs look enormous.

What's so striking to us looking at the way people dressed in this time is how very different their sense of body image was. They wanted their bodies to appear BIGGER and to be heavier, which is a pretty foreign to us. And no one wanted to look bigger and badder than the king.

Cynthia Hand as Edward VI

In case you were wondering what Cynthia looks like as a 16-year-old boy

We should mention that Edward was not a big person. He probably weighed about a hundred pounds at this point. And this is easily like twenty-five pounds worth of clothes, right here. First he'd have to put on a fine silk or linen undershirt. Then a jewel-encrusted, gold-embroidered red brocade overshirt with little holes in it, where they would pull the undershirt to peak out from. Then the jacket piece, which had pumpkin sleeves and a white ermine fur collar, topped with a big gold chain. On his head he wears this flat hat that was popular at the time, with a puff of feathers sticking out to one side.

We get tired just looking at these outfits. Is it any wonder that all three of our characters feel a sense of relief when they are able to shed all this finery and dead weight.

(Have you stopped laughing at our silly pictures yet? Because we haven't. . .)

And now . . .

The Contest

For today's contest, we'd like you to one of two things:

1. Dress up like a character from Tudor England, (any character, but one from MY LADY JANE would be especially wonderful) and email me your picture at ladyjanies@gmail.com


2. Photoshop your head on the body of a painting from this time period. (We thought this was SO. MUCH. FUN.) Email us the picture.

The best, funniest, or most creative photo will win some swag and your very own piece of MY LADY JANE fashion: A knitted crown like the one Cynthia wears on tour and/or a pair of fingerless mitts, knitted by one of the Janies.

We can't wait to see what you'll come up with!

And we can't stop laughing!

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Jane's Reign: Day Five

Hello hello!

Welcome back to Jane's Reign. We're on day five and we want to talk about . . . Jane's library.

More than anything, Jane loves books, and we, your faithful narrators, loved naming Jane's books. Here's a sampling of the fun we had.

  • The Unabridged History of the Beet in England: Volume Five
  • E∂ians: Historical Figures and Their Downfall
  • Wilderness Survival for Courtiers 
  • An Analysis of E∂ians' Paintings and Their Impact on Society: Volume Three
  • The Formation of Mountains and the Balance Achieved in Valley's: A Theory of E∂ian Magic in the Mundane World
  • The Jewels of the World: Man-made Marvels and How They Were Built
  • Drafting Decrees, the Ancient Language of Biding Arbitration
And . . . Oh we could go on and on about Jane's books. She has quite the library and all her books seem to have the most ridiculously long titles. 

We had so much fun naming Jane's books, and making fun of those names. On page 384, when Jane is ready to impart a bit of important information she learned from a book, G begs her not to name the title because they seriously don't have time. 

And earlier, G even makes up titles for books he assumes she must have read, like How to Rule a Kingdom, Even if You're Thirty-Second in the Line of Succession and Chances Are You'll Never Actually Rule: Volume One of Three. (page 222)

And all this ties into today's contest:

We want you to title more of Jane's books. And, if you're ambitious, create covers for her books for double points. 

Here's how it works:

1. We will choose a random winner, so put separate entries in separate comments
2. You can have up to five entries. 
3. The winner will be announced on July 18, and will receive a signed copy of MY LADY JANE!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Day 4 of Jane's Reign: the Janies compete for Best British Accent

Hello, Janeland!  Today, the Janies (awkwardly) filmed themselves performing (sort of) their best (best is all relative) British Accents! They didn't feel stupid doing this. Not at all.

Please vote for your favorite in the comments. And don't worry, no Janies will have their feelings hurt. *sniffles*

We will use a random number generator to pick one of the comments to win a prize! Like a signed book!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Jane's Reign: Day Three!

Yesterday's Princess Bride liveTweet was so fun!!!!  Please remember, even if you missed watching with us, you can still enter our Princess Bride contest (or ANY of our contests/giveaways this week) until July 17. All the winners will be announced on the 18th.

In today's celebratory post, we're going to talk about . . . PIE.

Mmmmmm pie.

One of the funny bits that we do in MY LADY JANE has to do with Edward's obsession with blackberries. He loves all things blackberry: blackberry pie, blackberry pudding, blackberry cobbler. He loves blackberries so much, it almost might be considered unhealthy.

It IS unhealthy, because come to find out, Edward's blackberries are being poisoned.

Doh. Spoiler alert.

(Fun fact: in an early draft of MY LADY JANE, we didn't use the word "England." Instead, we said "Schmengland," as a way of emphasizing that we were talking about an alternate history. In that version, the thing that Edward loved to eat most in the world was "schmengelberries," which made us giggle every time we read it. Check out page 11 and substitute blackberries with "schmengelberries," and we dare you not to smile. Our agents thought the whole Schmengland / schmengelberries thing was too silly, and so we changed it. But we miss schmengelberries.)

Anyway. Today we're going to give you our recipe for Edward's Poisoned Blackberry Pie. It's a dish, we find, best served cold. So here goes:

Edward's Poisoned Blackberry Pie


1 unbaked pie crust (I often use graham cracker crust for this, but regular crust will do)
*Also note that this recipe will make small small pies or one large one, so keep that in mind

The filling:
2 eggs
1 1/3 cups sour cream
1teaspoon of the poison of your choice (or, er, vanilla)
1 cup white sugar
1 pinch salt
1/3 cup flour
3 cups blackberries (or raspberries or SCHMENGELBERRIES, ha!)

The topping:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or almond, which is really good too)
1/4 cup butter, room temperature


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. In a large bowl, beat egg into light and bouncy and lemon colored, Whisk in sour cream and poison / vanilla.

3. In a separate bowl, mis sugar, flour and salt together. stir in the egg mixture. Gently fold in the berries.

4. Pour into the pie crust.

5. Bake in preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until the center begins to set.

6. While it's baking, mix your topping. Combine the sugar, flour, and nuts, and then cut the butter into the mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.

7. When the pie is done baking, take it out and sprinkle it with topping. Then return it to the oven for 10-15 more minutes, or until the topping is a nice golden brown.

8. Allow to cool totally. In fact this pie is best cold--it has a kind of custard filling, which just isn't as good warm or room temperature. Cool it and then chill it.

9. Top with a big dollop of whipped cream.

10. Die a painful death. It IS poisoned, after all.

Cynthia and a poisoned pie, shortly before her untimely demise.

The Contest

Now here comes the contest part, send us YOUR best poison and/or berry-related recipe. (We'll cook some of these up when we're on our next writing retreat! We can't wait!)   email it to us at ladyjanies@gmail.com under the subject line POISONED PIE CONTEST. The person who sends the one that sounds the tastiest to us will win a cooking-related MY LADY JANE prize pack. The winner will be announced on July 18.

What are you waiting for! Let's get cooking!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Jane's Reign: Day Two!

It's a very exciting day! Today the Lady Janies are going to sit down together (well, not together, since we all live in different towns) but AT THE SAME TIME and watch one of our all time favorite movies:

Anybody want a peanut?

We love this film so very much, and it was a source of major inspiration for us while we were writing MY LADY JANE. In fact, if you look hard enough, you'll find little nods to THE PRINCESS BRIDE all over MLJ.

So today we're going to celebrate all the silliness and hot hot Cary Elwes and fantasy that makes you laugh and watch this movie together. Please, please join us at :


You can livestream the movie at Netflix (click here), Amazon Prime (click here), or just watch your own copy. Please follow our twitter accts (@cynthiahand, @brodiashton, @jodimeadows) and see our comments and make your own at #princessbridelivetweet

When the movie is over, check back here for a list of questions you'll be able to answer only if you've seen the movie. Email us your answers, and you'll be entered to win a hilarious Princess Bride  / MY LADY JANE prize package. Winners will be announced on the Jane's Reign Prize Day, July 18.

And don't forget to come back here throughout the week for a new fun event and giveaway every single day of Jane's Reign.

See you soon over at Twitter! And have fun storming the castle!

QUESTIONS (after watching the film). 

**Send your answers to ladyjanies@gmail.com**

 The most correct answers will be in the running to win a prize pack:

1. What is the real meaning of "As you wish?"

2. "What do Vizzini and Co claim to be when they meet Buttercup?"

3. How many times is the word "Inconceivable" used in the movie?

4. Who is the six fingered man?

5. Whose cup does Westley put the poison into?

6. How many times in the movie do Buttercup and Westley kiss?

7. How many ships does Humperdinck say he'll send to find Westley?

8. How many years does Humperdinck put on the machine to kill Westley?

9. How much money does Inigo offer Miracle Max to revive Westley?

10. Why does Westley say Buttercup and Humperdinck aren't married?

Bonus points:

We will give you an extra point for each time we quoted or tipped our hats to THE PRINCESS BRIDE in MY LADY JANE. (There are a bunch!) Name the page and the paragraph.

Thanks for watching with us! We had a blast. Tomorrow: Cynthia takes us through how to make her POISON Blackberry pie, along with a recipe / cooking contest.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Jane's Reign: Day One


Today is the first day of Jane's reign as queen and oh do we have fun things for you!

As we said before, we're celebrating every day of Jane's reign with giveaways and exclusive content. So, let's get right to it!

First off, giveaway! Spread the word about Jane's Reign and get a chance for some amazing MY LADY JANE swag!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tune in tomorrow at 12pm Pacific Time for a liveTweet viewing by all three Janies (and whoever would like to join us) of a movie that was one of our biggest inspirations in writing our book: THE PRINCESS BRIDE. You can watch it on Netflix or AmazonPrime. Answer a few of our questions correctly and you might win a hilarious Princess-Bride-related prize.

And now, finally, click the jump for A DELETED SCENE from My LADY JANE that's never been shown anywhere else.
***WARNING: contains spoilers for the end of MY LADY JANE.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Poor Edward

On this day in history, Edward VI, after battling a mysterious illness for several months, died at Greenwich Castle at the tender age of sixteen.  He left behind a divided country and a very surprised also-sixteen-year-old girl on the throne of England. His cousin, Lady Jane Grey, became an impromptu queen almost overnight, and she'd go on to rule England . . . for approximately nine days.

A nine day reign. Yep. It's got to be some kind of record for the shortest rule EVER.

History is a huge downer in this regard, but we Lady Janies want to take this time to celebrate Jane's nine day stint on the throne. We're going to be hosting an event starting this week called JANE'S REIGN, where every day of Lady Jane Grey's reign of England, from July 9 to July 18, we'll present some exclusive Jane-related content, a contest, and a giveaway.

Here's some of the good stuff we have planned:

A liveTweet watching of THE PRINCESS BRIDE

A contest to make Edward's poisoned blackberry pie

The Janies competing to see who has the best English accent

Jane's library: Come up with more silly titles for Jane's books

A lesson in Tudor fashion

The real Guildford Dudley versus our very own G

A liveTweet of the old 80s movie with a very young and hot Cary Elwes, LADY JANE

A scavenger hunt for easter eggs from our favorite fantasies

and much more!

So check back on July 9 for Jane's Reign, and tell your friends! And come back EVERY DAY until July 18 to see what goodies we have in store for you!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

On This Day: Cynthia's birthday!

Today is Lady Janie Cynthia’s birthday! In the tradition of celebrating things that happened today but years ago, Brodi and I thought we’d discuss how much we love Cynthia.

Jodi: Oh gosh. Where to start! There are so many wonderful things about Cynthia, but I think what I’m most grateful for right now is that she brought us together as a writing group with the idea for MY LADY JANE. Obviously we’d have all been friends and done some traveling together even without MLJ, but her decision to include us in her mad idea to make a comedy out of a tragedy really cemented our friendship.

Brodi: It truly was a mad--but ultimately insanely awesome--idea. And it has only strengthened our friendship… because now we’re contractually obligated to stay friends. Cynthia is the motivating force behind our projects, I think. She kicks our butts at research and developing a passion for the people and places we are writing about. She cares more about historical accuracy and her chapters show the rich fabric of that research. Whenever we get an idea about a character, she will inevitably buy a book about that person and send it to the one of us writing about that person.*

*Previous sentence brought to you by the generous people and the Clunky Extra Long Sentences Club.

Jodi: You know what else is great about Cynthia? Her instinct to care for people. It’s basically Cynthia’s doing that we don’t starve to death on our writing retreats. Not only does she remember that we’re supposed to eat at least a couple times a day, but she’s also the one to do the actual cooking.

Brodi: And she is an incredible history geek. She bought each of us a hat that our characters would’ve worn in that era, and we wear them at events and act out a scene from the book. These moments always get the biggest laughs.  

Jodi: Visiting England with Cynthia was an experience. Not just because she (incredibly) planned our activities (again, taking care of us), but because we got to see another side of her. I mean, sure, we knew Cynthia was into history, but I will never forget her delightfully nerdy joy at visiting the Tower of London, or Hampton Court, or Stonehenge.

Brodi: And her laugh. She has the most contagious chuckle. Whenever I use the word “chuckle” in a sentence, I hear her laugh in my head! And she can’t contain her joy. When she heard I’d bought a PS4 and could now play Elder Scrolls Online with them, I could feel her bouncing in anticipation from 600 miles away.

Jodi: Another thing -- when we talk about what we each bring to writing our books together, I always say that Cynthia brings the emotional depth. There’s such a thoughtfulness to her writing . . . because there’s such a thoughtfulness to Cynthia. She’s so perceptive, and she always considers other people before herself. She’s incredibly selfless.

Happy Birthday, Cynthia! We love you! (Sorry this was late. See how we fall apart without you?)