Today is the anniversary of Jane Austen’s death.
People around the globe are remembering and celebrating with events all week long with get togethers, statue unveiling, dressing up, discussing her work and life, even traveling to England.
You don’t hear about so many people doing that on such a grand scale for Dickens, Bronte, even Shakespeare.
There’s just something about Austen that has brought together so many people in our times and spawned a whole sub-culture. A sub-culture we here at Meryton Press fully embrace as our origin story.
We know Jane Austen died too soon and left no children. And yet, here we are 200 years later because of her work. Her work inspires people to delve into Regency history, dress up, travel, and be creative. Most of our authors began as fans of Austen and then took Austen’s work as the basis of their own work. In a way they are the descendants of her work.
Some authors think of their books as children. A book inspired by a book could then be a grandchild. We’d like to recognize that without Austen’s children, these many grandbabies that make up our repertoire might not even exist.
Yet even if Meryton Press wasn’t so much about Austenesque, we can certainly say that each of us has had Jane Austen in a place of honor in our hearts before we ever came to this book publishing scene. We would hope that she would appreciate the way our authors have chosen to honor her with these grandbabies as the homage they are meant to be.
And as fangirls and fanboys, we remember Austen and her literary legacy on this day and always.
Our work being called grandbabies is an idea I haven’t heard before, but one I endorse. Releasing a book you’ve created is much like giving birth with all the hopes and fears for the child’s or book’s success. On this 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death, I’m extremely grateful for the life she lived and the books she left for us to enjoy. Each of her ‘children’ is loved by so many, and what more could an author or a mother ask?
What an interesting concept. I read all Jane’s books as a teenager and have since re read P&P several times so imagine my delight in 2014 when I first found a sequel which was part of a series. As I was buying the rest I noticed other stories based on Darcy and Elizabeth and haven’t looked back.
I agree that Jane seems to be unique in having this following of devoted fans and I for one am so grateful to Jane and to the authors and bloggers whose work I have enjoyed and will continue to enjoy. Thank you 😊.
Sheila L. Majczan
Coming in late; there were so many blogs and comments that day plus I was out for several hours. I like that these books are called her “grandbabies”. I would like to think that she would have comments, recommendations and even edits to offer. Thanks for your comments.