Austen Authors April 29, 2019: Anniversaries, birthdays, and recollections

I got excited when I first thought about writing this post, thinking I’d research Jane Austen’s mom and their relationship, given that my mom’s birthday was May 6th and Mother’s Day is May 12th. Then I realized that my post is not the first Monday in May this year. Bummer!

Look at that! It WAS on May 2nd! <3

Then, I realized that May is my Austen Author anniversary month. I wrote down somewhere, I think, what my date is … I think it’s May 2nd, 2016, but I could be wrong. It was definitely May that year, but the exact date escapes me. I have been an Austen Author for three whole years! <3 It’s sometimes difficult to think of something new and exciting to say, but I do enjoy posting here and interacting with the readers. 🙂

Anyway, as I progress through this post, you may find it’s a hodgepodge of things. That’s generally the way my mind works, so it won’t seem strange to me, though it might to you. LOL

So … Jane Austen and her mom. I think we all know that Cassandra Leigh Austen was Jane’s mother. Leigh was her maiden name, not a middle name. Yes, I had to double check that. 😉 Cassandra was from a higher social sphere than her husband and had connections to a duke, but apparently was a good manager and kept the family living within their budget. It seems she was also sickly much of the time and Jane took over many of the household duties that her mother had previously taken care of.

Like Cassandra Austen, my mom was not always well. The last few years of her life, she had fibromyalgia and was unable to work. She was able to live independently, though I frequently drove an hour each way on weekends to help her, and during the week in the summer when I was not working. My mom wasn’t from a higher social class than my father, but they practiced different religions. Mom became a Protestant at some point after they married. My mom was much younger when she died than Mrs. Austen was, though.

My mom and brother in 1971

I guess there’s not much known about Mrs. Austen’s relationships with her kids, though it seems Jane was much like she was as a younger woman: witty and shrewd. In comparison, I can tell you that my relationship with my mom was sometimes rocky, but I loved her and still miss her, more than 10 years after her death.

When I wrote my first post for Austen Authors, three years ago, I wrote a post based on a speech I gave about why I write Jane Austen Fan Fiction. I still write JAFF for the same reasons I did then, but I think I have grown as a writer and as a person over the course of time.

My mom in 2005

I remember being wide-eyed and excited about JAFF as a whole and still reading a lot of it. I still read quite a bit of JAFF, but have come to the point that when I have time to read, I want something that will soothe my soul, and that knocks a lot of stuff off the list. I get in moods where I want angsty stuff, the Being Mrs. Darcy that’s on a forum (NOT the published book by the same name) being my go-to story for that, but I usually go back to my tried-and-true low-angst favorites. I even re-read my own books. LOL As for being wide-eyed and excited … let’s just say that I’m too tired for all that and leave it go. 😉

So, there you have it – my rambly post. I’m looking forward to the next year and seeing what kind of interesting and amusing posts I can come up with, and how many books I can give away. 🙂

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