Category Archives: fandom

Master of the Mill by Cate Toward – a retelling of North and South

As part of the celebration of North and South I am contributing my review of Master of the Mill by Cate Toward.

Caty and I had a chat awhile back discussing her take on Thornton.

I started reading this story when it was first serialized and the way she wrote Thornton had me visualizing Armitage as Guy of Gisborne.
When it was published last January I was able to read it all the way through and appreciate her take on the story.

We find ourselves at the beginning of this story in Northern Milton. Margaret has lost her mother, Mr. Hale his wife and they are in dire straits due to the loss of Mrs. Hale’s annuity. Nevertheless Margaret is determined to supplement their income instead of relying on relatives.  Mr. Bell had suggested Milton but left for the West Indies upon their arrival.

 

This is the North and South that will shock Mrs. Gaskell

“what are you doin’ here?”

This story has the infamous incident of The Master beating a worker portrayed in the 2004 BBC adaptation written by screen writer Sandy Welch presumably to advance the plot and make the instant dislike of Margaret clear. And of course Margaret challenges him, dislikes him instantly but recognizes an odd sensation she can’t place …

He looked like the Angel Gabriel, dressed in black, tall, commanding, powerful, ready.” from Ch 1

 

This is the North and South where Mr. Thornton isn’t a virgin nor a monk!

We meet Thornton in a liaison with Lydia Slickson, the renamed Ann Latimer from the adaptation, written in for plot purposes. Our master has found a way to blow off his stress 🙂

He looked critically at her evaluating the pleasure she offered against the time wasted away from his work.” Ch 2

 

This is the North and South where Margaret gets to work in the mill, … under cover 😉

Margaret decides it isn’t below her to find quarters amongst the mill workers and she becomes rapidly friends with Bessie as neighbor and companion. It’s Bessie who suggests it could be done for her to work without the master taking notice.

To get one over on a master, tis a fine joke. Provided ‘e don’t take offence if all is discovered.” Ch 4

 

This is the North and South where there is a ball!

A ball!! Who doesn’t love a ball?

 

 

You dance well, sir” He laughed, raised an eyebrow and leaned in to her, whispering, “I have not stood upon your toes yet, I count that a small victory against nature.” Ch 9

 

 

This is the North and South where we have intrigue!

 

Because I don’t want to be any more spoilery you’ll have to read it but I thought it a clever even if familiar twist.

What makes this a fun read, is when the imagery of the adaptation comes in my mind. I certainly recognize some scenes and lines but sometimes the context is different.

Caty’s authentic use of the workers dialect gives the story weight. I only wished we had more back story in setting up Thornton differently as most of us know him or making Margaret’s circumstances slightly more believable.

I encourage you to follow Caty’s writing adventures on Wattpad , her current work in progress, While Christ and His Angels Slept, a Sparrow Sang.  Occasionally she tweets as well.

While Christ and His Angels Slept, a Sparrow Sang.

I hope one day she will publish Ricky Deeming’s story The Road


Remembering Anna

I met Anna P from NZ on twitter at least over a year ago. We probably chatted over a certain chap, cue gorgeous picture :

by Richard Ashcroft : source : richardarmitagenet.com

this latest picture directly inspired by Swooning Maruca’s post

Our conversation went beyond RA from flowers into period drama and specifically Garrow’s Law,

with Andrew Buchan, which I had recently discovered and was watching with friends on twitter. She even managed to join us virtually for watching several episode, not easy with the time difference!

Because I’m pretty sure this would make her smile I can’t resist adding this fanvid about the series!

Andrew Buchan as William Garrow

As fate will have it I discovered via an Andrew fansite which Anna had introduced me too, that Andrew together with Jenny Agutter just did a Word and Music episode as Richard Armitage fans we’re familiar with his episode

Andrew Buchan

With that in mind I thought it worth sharing, this episode is entirely different as the description tells you. Enjoy!

Words and Music : Ave Maria

Ave Maria: Music and texts inspired by the Blessed Virgin Mary with Jenny Agutter and Andrew Buchan.

Jenny Agutter can currently be seen starring as Sister Julienne in the hit BBC TV series “Call the Midwife”, and Andrew Buchan is currently playing the part of the father of a murdered boy in the ITV drama “Broadchurch”.

The Virgin Mary has inspired perhaps more writing and music than any other historical or Biblical figure and this edition of Words and Music attempts to dip a small toe in the ocean of material available. Following the Biblical narrative from the Annunciation, the birth and life of her son Jesus Christ and his death on the cross, the story goes beyond the New Testament into Catholic traditions concerning the Assumption of Mary into Heaven, her crowning and, back on earth, the numerous visions and miracles that have been reported in her name over the centuries.

The programme includes poems, prose and texts by a wide variety of authors including Thomas Hardy, Rupert Brooke, Dorothy Parker, W.B. Yeats, Marina Warner and Carol Ann Duffy, as well as extracts from the Gospels.

An eclectic selection of music includes works by Bach, Messiaen, Rautavaara, Robert Parsons, James MacMillan, Massenet and Jacqui Dankworth.

Producer
Helen Garrison.

UPDATE : demurely1 responded after she was informed about Anna, recalling a post she had contributed and including a response from Anna’s husband : http://andrew-buchan-fansite.tumblr.com/post/50009766284/demurely1-andrew-buchan-fansite-jody-id#


A CelebRAtion of RA’s success!

I believe I speak for many Richard Armitage fans that we are all happy and proud for him.

'the hobbit - an unexpected journey' world film premiere, wellington, new zealand - 28 nov 2012

looking stellar

The Hobbit premiere has launched his career with a bash and I love the idea of giftbombing his charities. Click on the widget for Richard’s page on JustGiving to choose your charity of choice, you have a choice of leaving a message or not and remember what’s most important isn’t the amount but the thought that counts. click & shARe your RA love 🙂

https://i2.wp.com/www.jagrant.com/watcher/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/rahobbitgiftbombforcharitynov2612gratianal21.gif

Info on past donation drives can be found on Richard Armitage Online and RichardArmitage.net

Happy fangurling and giftbombing!

EDIT: Can’t leave with some silly pun:

He’s sure now on people’s RADAR (that’s cause there isn’t a celebRAtion fanvid to my knowledge, YET)


I cast my first US vote

Organizing my thoughts don’t come naturally and writing them down is even harder; as I tend to overthink it. I had a great blogpost in the shower one morning which I intended to finally whip up .. and Oops I published my rambling notes from the past week.

I’m the last leg of a blog chain following a conversation about voting traditions around the globe. Heidi, a natural instigator, kicked this off here from an American perspective, and then Katie posted her Australian perspective here, followed by another American perspective here and now it’s my turn in this round robin.

First i should note if you haven’t added your vote in support of fellow FanstRA blogger Melanie do so! Be sure to vote everyday, I won a give-away from her blog awhile back and if I remember correctly its via her N&S blog event we all got to know Heidi.

I also can’t pass up to mention a story of how a little town rallied to win the title of Ultimate Fishing town in America.

Let me add a disclaimer I’m not the most politically informed person, besides I feel it’s a discussion I don’t feel comforable with on social media. Hence my thought to post this outside of this blog but there is no denying that if it wasn’t for Richard Armitage being the common denominator I would possibly never have bumped into you gals in cyberspace.

I was born and raised in one of the few countries; Belgium where the vote is compulsory versus voluntary. What was interesting is that I always assumed it was because of its smallness in size. My father knew to tell me that years ago the socialist party initiated the compolsory vote with the purpose to increase voters in their favor, according to him it did not pan out that way. In theory NOT voting is punishable by law but these days it’s enforced, my father remembers differently though. As an expat I’ve only voted by mail for national elections and its only in recent years that the government made an effort in collecting those votes.

According to this Elecoral Voting Comission document from 2006 “Compulsory voting has been introduced for a number of reasons and often at times of constitutional and political change, but thedesire to maximise turnout among all sections of society seems to have been a commonobjective. It has often been implemented as a result of wider political reform such as a change in a country’s political system, as in Chile, or alongside the introduction of universal suffrage, as in Belgium and Luxembourg.

Interesting it mentions later on: “The only obvious example where an established democracy appears to have introduced compulsory voting solely in response to low voter turnouts is Australia.”

Personally I have no problem to have it compulsory. As citizen we have to pay taxes, why shouldn’t we vote and be forced to consider our choices? We are LUCKY that we can!

I know that would be unthinkable with this recent ID issue in the States, I find that a hard one to graple, how do people have bank accounts, pay bills?

But most importantly this post is meant to be anecdotal and about my impressions. People’s response to my status change from resident to citizen has been most enjoyable to observe.

Last Friday I had a dinner date with 3 other Belgian girlfriends at a French restaurant. All of us are from the Flanders (for those who are reading The Sunne In Splendour; Burgundy) We met here, two of us recently got our citizenship, one still has to, the other made sure her vote counted last election. I’ve been here more than 20 yrs, 17 as a resident and when the votes got recounted is when I wished for the first time I could vote. As a resident I receive all the benefits of a citizen except I can’t vote & I would have to pay inheritance tax, but there are lawyer ways around that.

I’d like to close this post with two songs from a Belgian artist who made an album recently called North and South referring to the complex conflict in Belgium.

I had to link this song if only in tribute to Frenz’s Ukelele love – the link here is its filming location : Hellend vlak van Ronquièrs it just doesn’t sound as nice translated in English: Ronquières inclined plane

Milow – you don’t know – Ukelele version –

Because I can’t resist linking this to something Armitage this song reminds me how some fans fear sharing our idol.

Milow – you and me :


Fall into Splendour or collective ReAding

“Five hundred years after he died on the field of battle, Richard is still a figure of controversy and his story still fascinates and casts a spell. Betrayed in life by his allies, Richard was betrayed in death by history. Leaving no heir, his reputation was like his corps: left to his enemies, mutilated beyond recognition.

Filled with the sights and sounds of battle, the customs and lore of daily life, the rigors and risks of Court politics, the passions and infidelities of the high-born, and the touching concerns of very real men and women, The Sunne in Splendour brings to life this gifted man whose greatest sin, perhaps, was that he held principles too firm for the times he lived in and loved too deeply to survive love’s loss.” thus ends the jacket of the book.

The Sunne in Splendour is one of those epic novels the size of a dictionary and I bought the e-book about two years ago after I read the Vulpes Libris interview.

Given that historical fiction is one of my favorite genres, the fact that I’ve started it more than once without finishing it, is no reflection of the book but rather of mine, noticable in my blog title 🙂

Richard III has been on our minds with King Richard Week behind us and the current Greyfriars Project in Leicester, UK.

I hope everyone has signed the petition in support of Richard Armitage’s effort of exploring a more historically accurate portrayal of King Richard III of England.

Heidi proposed the idea to read it all together using the #ArmitageWatch concept, how could I resist!

Richard III Bloggers will be cheering us on with fun activities

If you blog; consider yourself invited to post your thoughts & host those readers who connect via blogs.

We can do this!!

In hopes of making an enjoyable reading experience, I carefully pondered a schedule that would allow for progress in a timely manner with breaks for Thanksgiving (1 wk) and the Holiday’s (2 wks) allowing time for family obligations or catch up time for those who need it.

The end result is 5 chapters a week which brings our last discussion on Sunday February 24th!

The first 5 chapters contain the most pages; 80, the remainder are around 60 pg of reading per week, 10 pg a day give or take.

This requires a commitment but a very attainable one and I hope discussion will prove to be a motivator.

I for one will certainly use it as such. 🙂

Twice in the middle of the book and back to back we’ll read 6 chapters, because of reduces chapter sizes, both are carefully indicated on the list and calendar.

For those in need of specific meeting time to chat with regards to the book, watch ArmitageWatch Blogspot

For those on Facebook : chapters will also be posted on The Institute of Armitage Studies

The King Richard Armitage site will also keep people updated

Most of the fun will happen on twitter be sure to use #RA4R3 when posting any comments during the week.

To be fair we should refrain from spoilers until the Sunday after (whenever its Sunday in your timezone)

If unfamiliar with twitter more info here

Join many ReAders this Fall with The Sunne into Splendour

*******

Sept 23rd : Chapters 1 + 5 of Book One : Edward

Sept 30th : Chapters 6 + 10

Oct 7th : Chapters 11 + 15

Oct 14th : Chapters 16 + 20

Oct 21st : Chapters 21 + 25

Oct 28th : Chapters 26 + 30

Nov 4th : Chapters 31 + 3 of Book Two : Anne

Nov 11th : Chapters 4 + 8

Nov 18th : Chapters 9 + 13

break for Thanksgiving

Don’t forget to eat and drink!

Dec 2nd : Chapters 14 + 4 of Book Three : Lord Of The North

Dec 9th : Chapters 5 + 9

Dec 16th : Chapters 10 + 15 : YES : 6 chapters

break for the Holidays

Read, Eat, Drink and Be Merry!

Jan 6th : Chapters 16 + 21 : YES : 6 chapters

Jan 13th : Chapters 1 + 5 of Book Four : “Richard, By The Grace Of God…”

Jan 20th : Chapters 6 + 10

Jan 27th : Chapters 11 + 15

Feb 3rd : Chapters 16 + 20

Feb 10th : Chapters 21 + 25

Feb 17th : Chapters 26 + 32 HOMERUN

Feb 24th : Last discussion

Take a bite and you’ll get a virtual kiss from RA

Feel free to ask questions!


Sharpe Lives on Sharpe Sundays

To portray a character and build it is every actor’s dream.  As such Sean Bean was given the opportunity to take the life of Richard Sharpe and history was made.

To quote Bernard Cornwell: ” I began writing Sharpe in 1980 and he’s still going strong. I never thought there would be this many books – I imagined there might be ten or eleven – but then along came Sean Bean and the television programmes and I virtually began a whole new Sharpe series.

If you’re unfamiliar with the film series check out Sharpe film for episode listings

article couldn’t say it better: “It is an interesting phenomenon when a role becomes so identified with an actor that this portrayal becomes that character forever in the public’s mind. I’m sure this phenomenon has a number of consequences for the actor, the producers, the writers, and the director of a series or film and also for the creator of the character…. read more on Sean is Sharpe

It’s been since Spring that fellow Blogger; Fabo and I thought to revisit this series.

As we are aware that there are so many fans out there we thought it be extra fun to share this event. Besides Sean Bean has gained a new fanbase since his role in the 1st season of HBO series of Game of Thrones as Ned Stark who may never have seen him swing a sword as another!

Some heroes live FOREVER and are worth a regular revisit!

As the series origin is in the UK we thought a time where both US and UK fans could connect would be :

USA East Coast: 3pm      UK: 8pm    Continent: 9pm

Be sure to set your clocks and we will all hit play on the hour!

Now I can’t think of a better way to look forward to summer 🙂

In short FOLLOW on twitter and LIKE on Facebook

We will post into episode description on the Facebook page soon, another place for people to gather if they prefer.

For info how to connect online check here : #SharpeSundays will be the hashtag for the event.

August Sharpe Sunday


Global Armitage Watching or moRA is better!

North and South promo picture

So the North and South watch is behind us and I think we can call it a success thanks to excellent moderating skills of @ArmitageWatch no doubt we started a yearly tradition, hopefully if you missed it this year you can catch it next year or you can join us for future watching.

This whole idea came out of a conversation on twitter and since, this mantra occasionally pops into my cRAzy head:

IF  YOU  POST  IT  THEY  WILL  COME! 

a modified quote from Field of Dreams 🙂

I hope you find the opportunity to join any of the coming RAwatches! Check out the Armitage Watch Calendar, look for a time that suits you and if uncertain how we go about: check this out. Note: take advantage of the Google feature to import each calendar into your personal one. For your convenience you can follow and LIKE our posts on Facebook

In case the word watch throws you off a bit I included the listed definition:

watch ———>>>

verb (used without object)

1. to be alertly on the lookout, look attentively, or observe, as to see what comes, is done, or happens: to watch while an experiment is performed.
2. to look or wait attentively and expectantly (usually followed by for ): to watch for a signal; to watch for an opportunity.
3. to be careful or cautious: Watch when you cross the street.
4. to keep awake, especially for a purpose; remain vigilant, asfor protection or safekeeping: to watch with a sick person.
5. to keep vigil, as for devotional purposes.
6. to keep guard: She was assigned to watch at the door.

LOOK WHO”S KNOCKING ON YOUR DOOR?

Fridays I’ll be looking forward to #GuyWatch : 2 episodes every friday starting on the hour.

Once Spooks has finished in the fall #GuyWatch will double up ; meaning 2 episodes each Friday AND Saturday!

Guy of Gisborne

Saturdays we have #LucasWatch : meaning Spooks from Season 7 down to the 9 : 2 episodes each Saturday.

Lucas North

But that is not all we plan to have more weekend events: if you check out the calendar they are already there:  #HarryWatch #MonetWatch and more!!

Please spReAd the news and join the FUN!


I have a dReAm…about a date with a cravat and a kiss

So you’ve seen a show on tv and talked to your friends about it.

You’ve seen a movie and couldn’t stop talking about it after.

Then you find yourself like a certain ActoR in a certain role and HAVE to find people who feel the same way about it.

Then you must catch up on the things he’s done in the past OR most likely you came upon him because of a role he’s done in the past.

So say hello to Mr. Thornton ….

you can keep your hat on..

note: I was tempted to post other pictures but why spoil it for those who haven’t seen it.

So I propose … One weekend in June: Friday 1st, Saturday 2nd, Sunday 3rd,

a global North and South watch.

This is overdue for US primetime since it’s only aired once on A&E EDIT: BBC America regardless of the appeal to PBS, including a facebook campaign.

I think we’ve been deprived!

I’m aware MANY have found themselves involuntary watching (links contain spoilers)  all four episodes back to back till the wee hours or after watching N&S the first time, went straight to the beginning and rewatched it. Than watched again the next day. Then the next.

A couple of rules might help everyone along the way. We are pretending the show is starting on the dot; so set your clocks. It will be impossible to count down or for everyone to be exactly at the same spot.

I thought about this a lot, I wish I could have talked it over a lot more since we’re dealing with four episodes.

For that reason I’m suggesting the watch at the specific times, those who choose to view all 4 in one go could, those who choose to do 2 per night can as well.

So to keep at least this post simple I”m posting the US prime times:

(my plan is to post a multiple timegrids for Europe, UK, US for instance I’ve done a Persuasion watch with Europe in the afternoon when it was evening there)

US Prime time:

Friday June 1st

EDT:  8pm : ep 1          PDT: 6pm: ep 1

EDT:  9pm:  ep 2          PDT: 7pm: ep 2

EDT: 10pm : ep 3        PDT: 8pm: ep 3

EDT: 11pm : ep 4         PDT: 9pm: ep 4

Saturday June 2nd

EDT: 6pm: ep 1           PDT: 4pm: ep 1

EDT: 7pm: ep 2          PDT: 5pm: ep 2

EDT: 8pm: ep 3          PDT: 6pm: ep 3

EDT: 9pm: ep4           PDT: 7pm: ep 4

EDIT

AUSTRALIA Prime Time:

Saturday June 2nd

EST: 8pm :  ep 1           US EDT: 6am : ep 1       UK BST : 11 am : ep 1

EST: 9pm :  ep 2           US EDT: 7am : ep 2      UK BST : 12 pm : ep 2

EST: 10pm: ep 3           US EDT: 8am : ep 3      UK BST :  1 pm :  ep 3

EST: 11pm:  ep 4           US EDT: 9am : ep 4      UK BST :  2 pm : ep 4

Sunday June 3rd

EST: 6pm : ep 1           US EDT: 4am : ep 1       UK BST : 9am : ep 1

EST: 7pm : ep 2           US EDT: 5am : ep 2       UK BST :10am: ep 2

EST: 8pm : ep 3           US EDT: 6am : ep 3       UK BST: 11am: ep 3

EST: 9pm : ep 4           US EDT: 7am: ep 4         UK BST: 12pm:ep 4

For the UK  and Europe I’m suggesting Sat and Sun eve so friends (from the US) who want to connect and share the experience with them could view in the afternoon. I’m working on my sisters to get together 🙂

A dedicated blog and twitter account has been established: 

EDIT : the Facebook page went LIVE

This is my peddle in the ocean, be on the look out for the ripples in the pond 🙂

Meanwhile SAVE the date!


FanstRA day 7: Coffee with whatcatydidnext

Coffee with whatcatydidnext :

When finally Caty appeared on Wattpad I was very pleased, I had read her Ricky Deeming story two years ago on livejournal ; a character from George Gently first episode. Fanfiction is for me a way to explore a character that is least shown and developed on screen, Ricky is where I started.

I’m too sexy for my gloves, too sexy for my bike, too sexy for the screen by far!

I had previously asked and explained the technically benefits which straight away went over her head. Of course was I tickled pink reading her commentary when she discovered she could be downloading a story via the application on her phone instead of the mobile browser!

LOL Kudos to Wattpad, recently a pop-up appears on your mobile screen with the option to open the story in the app, it can’t get anymore easy (sometimes it doesn’t link the first time)

What that means is that one doesn’t need internet access beyond the initial download of the story. And for those unfamiliar with how Wattpad works. Once you make an account and fan an author you will get notified when a new chapter has been posted. All that is needed is hit the update button on top of your library list and WOOSH you watch a new chapter streaming into your story. That singular moment one needs internet access.

When I contact her for a little chat she checked out my blog posts from last year, I almost forgot the most important question and discover some surprises!

whatcatydidnext: Hello sweetie, just been laughing at the vids. At the mo I’m sort of caught up in work stuff and quite exhausted by RL. I had an accident about six months ago and broke a couple of vertebra, still causing a bit of a problem. I can’t sit for very long, stupid really. And I don’t mind having a chat, but remember I do talk far too much.

Fanny: hope laughing is not painful with your injury 😦 I’m guilty of talking too much myself so no fear! Maybe we need to spike our coffee! How DO you like your coffee?

whatcatydidnext: It’s my firm belief that laughter cures ills, brings down tyrants, and if you’re really lucky, makes not winning the lottery easier to live with. It’s included in my physio therapy…
Ooooh, spiked coffee, delicious. At this point I should prob say clever things about ‘Arabica beans’, ‘slow roasting’ and the like, but in all honesty it’s two teaspoons of whatever instant you’ve got, a dash of milk, no sugar, thank you. Oh, have we started? I can do ‘sensible’?

Fanny: We have! And please leave sensible at the door & keep your madcap on!

whatcatydidnext: Good, because sensible can be a bit of a strain…

Fanny: LOL good thing me and sensible don’t get along very well either! Perhaps that’s why I loved The Road so much? If my memory doesn’t fail me (which it does often these days) it was my first fanfic .

WhatCatydidnext: Really, oooh, sorry. It was a wee bit umm…rude.

Fanny: LOL I’d call it straightforward 🙂

whatcatydidnext: Ricky is possibly my favourite RA character. We actually see so very little of him, but his personality is writ large, there’s just a feast of possibilities with him. I did go a bit OTT with the Russian thing, but it was meant to be a lot longer. Hari, Ricky, and Piri were supposed to go into a Cold War spy thing. Complete with daring escape over the Berlin Wall. But it became obvious that it was really a dysfunctional love story.

Fanny: I certainly wouldn’t mind reading a follow up on Ricky’s adventures LOL what a tease you are! I’m so glad you finally figured the app out on your phone! Can I feature you as my techy guinea pig? That was my main motivation for spreading the news in the RA fanfic world ; Wattpad’s mobile’s reading convenience .. meanwhile you have found your way around the community on Wattpad.

whatcatydidnext: Wattpad, what can I say? Interesting.
I do think they need to sort out their categories; the historical one is more hysterical than historical!
It’s my bugbear with this site, maybe I’m just too anal, but I do like things where they ought to be. It’s not history just because the women wear long frocks and all the men are knights. I think ‘The Tudors’ has a lot to answer for!

There is some excellent work on Dreamer fiction, so many really good stories that you don’t see anywhere else, it’s a shame. I can never fathom out how it works. Some writers are so good, professional quality in fact, but they don’t get mentioned in the blogs. Bookishy for instance, brilliant stuff…

Fanny: I remember the historical fiction category was created fall 2010 not long after Charlotte and other RA fic writers started posting. But as you say it’s not strictly monitored – not enough Wattpad ambassadors for that. How do other sites monitor those things?

whatcatydidnext: Lots of people put in stuff on willy-nilly though. It worries me, anything that’s as unregulated as it seems to be, is heading for something unfortunate. Copyright laws have ignored fanfics because no money is made, but once people are getting paid, however little, accountants will come out of the woodwork. Could spell the end of a very pleasurable activity.

Fanny: Anyway to get back on topic you choose to write RA characters with a dark slant versus a soft romantic one – particularly John Thornton in “Master of the Mill” was shocking! *note the hysteria in my voice* LOL

WhatCatydidnext: Oh, yes, John. I heard recently that it upset a few people. I’m so sorry about that, I just saw him as a man of the world. He kept his family inviolate, didn’t use his factory girls as a sexual resource, as some did. John was an honourable man, but he was very much a man. I just gave him an ongoing and fairly commitment free affair with the more than willing Ann. I possibly loosened him up a wee bit, in the book, he’s proud of his self discipline, but not self-righteous. I reasoned that it meant he had an outlet. I also thought a 30 plus male virgin living with his mum, with the weight of the world on his shoulders, would be more a candidate for a breakdown, than a romantic hero. As I remember Mrs G didn’t specifically make him a virgin, nor did the writers of the TV version. And darling do you think an inexperienced man could have kissed Margaret that way…Hmmm?

Fanny: LOL no that was not just a peck!!

whatcatydidnext: It was not! Took a lot of work to get just right if the interview was anything to go by.

Fanny: Yes! “that was a bit of fun” if I recall well, is what Danielle said 🙂 Actually I liked how you fleshed out Ann a bit – made her a perfect opposite of Margaret.

WhatCatydidnext: From the look on her face at the meeting on the street, the party, and then clinging to John’s arm outside the church? I just thought, she likes to be seen. Fanny with more umph! (If you’ll pardon the comparison dear?)

its whats under those pettycoats that matters

Fanny: btw I embarasingly discovered she’s not in the book while at a bookclub meeting – I obviously hadn’t made it to the end of the book then – though I had finished the book a year before – typical confusion between book & adaptation .. Anyway you’ve been writing a long time now I think and have been hoping to get yourself published. Best of luck for the future!

whatcatydidnext: An embarrassingly long time actually, I might get good sometime soon…Might have another go at the publishing thing. Might try Kindle, I do have a completed contemporary romance sitting in my dump file. Funnily, it’s not at all dark, rather fluffy in fact, and it ends happily. Now there’s a thing!

Fanny: self-publishing is the thing these days and with social media at your hand you would be iressistable not to buy 🙂 FLUFFY and funny you say? I don’t believe it!! LOL

I have 2 more questions I’m asking everyone: what’s your preferred mode of writing: Pen & Paper or wordprocessing
What’s your preferred time of writing?

whatcatydidnext: Ummm, well, I write longhand in little notebooks first, then type it up, about four or five times till it sounds right. As I work early, late and night shifts, there really isn’t a preferred time, it’s just a matter of my head and the time being in conjunction.

Fanny: Sure! In hindsight I almost forgot one important question : what got you started with writing and is RA based characters your first foray into fan fiction ?

whatcatydidnext: I was talking to my sister about this a while ago; she said she could remember me writing a story for ‘The legend Jesse James’. It was a TV series starring Christopher Jones, in the early 1960’s I think. As I’m 59 now, I would have been in my early teens then. Took my time with that fanfic!

So, Christopher Jones actually started it, but it’s RA’s interpretation of the characters he plays that has fuelled my imagination. It wasn’t North and South that got me hooked, I had seen Robin Hood, thought his double act with Keith Allan was the most interesting thing in it.

GiZ, you’re gonna pay for that tooth!

Then I was off work with a cold and stuck being miserable in front of afternoon telly. ‘Moving On’ came on, and that last speech was a stunner. That was it, watched everything I could find. Then I came across Bookishy’s ‘Fallout’ on the net and discovered fanfics, it was all downhill from there…

take me with you

Romana55: John Mulligan : You’re heart is as black as night

Fanny: Wow! I had to sit on that info for awhile .. Mulligan was the drop that spilled your literary bucket .. again! Have to say that twinkle in his eye that completely died at that last scene … stunned me too. Would it be fair to say you are very skilled honing in to the dark side of things?
Have to say I’m not holding my breath for my youngest sister who entertained us with pages of storyboard about princes Gwendoline 🙂


whatcatydidnext: Keep your eyes on Princess Gwendoline, she might turn into something else!!! Don’t know about skilled, but I’m fascinated by what draws people together. Sometimes it’s not pretty, but these people fit, they don’t make each other happy, they make each other whole. And no bad boy is going to become a ‘new man’ for the love of a good woman. That’s a concept that has kept women marrying the wrong men for centuries. You can’t change a person, but they can grow. New experiences bring new insights, new understanding. I like to think my characters grow up as their story goes on. And I don’t think you can have a happy ending, as nothing actually ends. Personally, I want to know they’ll go on loving, having fun, building their lives, fighting fortune for their little bit of heaven, that’s not an end. I want to look through their eyes and see a future.
For some reason Harry Kennedy and John Standring, although they are utterly charming men, don’t ring my bells, too nice I suspect. I can remember someone once asking why Harry left London when he did, was he an accountant for a crime boss or something???? Sorry got carried away again…

Liked the vid, there’s a Nine Inch Nails one that I think says it all about Guy.

warning: explicit lyrics

Principessa55: Guy of Gisborne Closer Season 3 (Robin Hood BBC)


Fanny: Amen to that! I’ve heard some speculating about that too though in VoD he was still working in London on the weekends. The kindle project could easily get started after fanstRA – but what tickled me pink is witnessing when you discovered the use of the Wattpad app! LOL Finally the reason why I invited you and others before – how long have you been reading on your phone now?


whatcatydidnext: Seem like forever now. I remember you trying to explain it to me…I am such a technophobe. when I got the smartphone my son laughed and posted photos on Facebook of me using it! Mind you he did that when I shaved my head. I think they may have a book running on what MrsT will do next, where the pen. name comes from ;))

Fanny: Thanks for a great chat, look forward to spreading the news about your publication whether its wicked OR fluffy! I”m usually very sweet and nice but I can’t resist ending with a wicked fanvid 🙂

Kitsunify: No Regrets – Guy of Gisborne



Sunday, March 18th

Last, but definitely not least! Freeform: Agzyshares with us her favorite Armitage paper doll Ana Cris examines Lucas North’s tattoos through Maori tattoo culture Jas Rangoon premieres her new John Bateman fanvid In fandom, jazzbaby1thinks RA fandom is just groovy! C.S. Winchester asks “naughty or nice?” in a picspam Mrs. E.B. Darcy thinks about Armitage’s future after TH to wrap up the Hobbit chain Jo Ann offers the last King Richard Armitage post, on Richard III and the Tudors Infanfic, Maria Grazia reviews and compares works by the authors she’s interviewed Gratiana Lovelace wraps up the event with a guest post by Melissa the Mouse! Links to all FanstRA 3 posts appear here at the end of each day


FanstRA day 6: Coffee with Womblingfree

Coffee with Womblingfree

I spotted Womblingfree on twitter via mutual friends much later after Spooks S9 aired and of course a new RA aka Richard Armitage writer on Wattpad had my fanfic feelers right away on alert. There are so many RA character based stories on Wattpad now I can’t keep up but I know there always is something to look forward to. I finally had a chance to read something by her when she posted Santa’s New Toy this past holiday season.

Fanny: What character did you meet first, but first how do you like your coffee?

Womblingfree: How do I like my coffee? Plentiful – I drink far too much of the stuff but am quite boring – white, no sugar!

First character I met – Harry Kennedy, and I thought “Mmmm, maybe…” I remember seeing ads for Robin Hood & Strikeback and thinking “Must watch that” but never getting round to it. Then Series 9 of Spooks started and I began to see the light!

phew! I didn’t bump my head!


Fanny: Yes, I did not see the light right away when I caught the first Season of Robin Hood on BBCA . That is quite a gap of time there between airing of Robin Hood or did you caught those adds for Season 3 perhaps? Did you also realize the same actor was in them?

Womblingfree: Yes – I realised it was him. He was kind of vaguely on my radar but not quite getting to ‘crush level’ for a few years. Then S9 Spooks started and I stumbled across a thread about him on a chat forum and after a few days of chat, reading interviews and lots of YouTube viewing l realised I had regressed to be about 13 again : )

Guess again who I am!


Fanny: Oh wow S9, you must have been in a mad rush catching up on Spooks S7 & 8 ! I know about the regressing – I’ve named it “aging in reverse” 😀

So would it be fair to summarize you got caught in the mad fan rush of anticipating what was to happen with Lucas? Is your screen name “womblingfree” a representation of Armitage Mania impact? 🙂


Womblingfree: I’d watched series 7 & 8 as well but for some reason, although I liked the character and RA’s acting I just didn’t get ‘that‘ feeling. I think the Russian dialogue in the first episode of S9, and perhaps the slightly ‘hunkier’ look in the wake of Strikeback might have tipped the balance a bit!

No, I’m not John Porter as Lucas under cover, I just borrowed his jacket

Womblingfree is my name by default really. It was a name I used on another site a couple of years ago so I used it for Twitter too and then it came with me when I signed up on Wattpad! (twitter log in feature on Wattpad)

..as for mad rush to catch up – the only other thing I’d seen him in was the Vicar of Dibley at that point – I really should have shares in Amazon now!

Fanny: The anticipation of Spooks S9 got me engaging on twitter with other fans – like you via an account I had made for another fandom as a way to follow updates. Lucas S9 character brought out a lot of feelings in the fans: Season 9 had him featured more and attempted to show more of the man behind the mask. Did you discover his character in Strike Back stirred similar feelings, since there is a similar contrast between physical strength versus emotional strength? Or perhaps a conflict about choices and decisions?

Womblingfree: Although their jobs are similar I’ve always felt that as men Lucas and Porter are very different characters. I like to think that Lucas/Bateman was not a bad man, but inherently weak, hence the Dakar situation and making a series a wrong choices from then onwards. I guessed the outcome a few episodes before the end of the series so although I was a bit deflated, I wasn’t too surprised.

my bloody nose is itching!

I had much stronger feelings about the demise of John Porter. I think there was so much potential to develop him further, and even though they couldn’t do that without Richard on board, to just kill him off as quickly as possible without tying up so many of the loose ends from Series One I felt was a real disservice both to Chris Ryan’s character and to Richard’s fantastic portrayal of him in the first series.

I only watched the first 40 minutes of Project Dawn and was thoroughly hacked off for a good couple of weeks afterwards, to be honest.

I may go backwards at some point and write my own version of what happened after Series One – I have an idea in mind but it’s on the back-burner at the moment.

Fanny: Oh that idea sounds good – let me know if I can help turn that burner on 😉 a little JP picture perhaps?? I think about Lucas/Bateman the same way – inherently weak – Hence I enjoy reading fanfiction keeping those characters alive – same for Porter : I happily live in denial of their demise.

Womblingfree give me a juicy ending! I’ll do whatever it takes!

Womblingfree: I haven’t really read any Lucas fanfic apart from The Gruinard Project, and haven’t felt inspired to write any either which is strange I suppose as it was ‘him’ that got me hooked.
I was just reading your blog about Lords of the North – it really is brilliant isn’t it? I’ve almost finished the first book in the series and was talking to a friend today about writing a short Uhtred fanfic at some point.

Wallpaper by Vivayn


Fanny: That is a fellow blogger who’s post I tweeted : yes Lords of the North is brilliant, even more your idea to write a short fic. I have to confess to harbor a wish for Monet fanfic – now that’s a crazy notion 😀


I have 2 more questions I’m asking everyone: what’s your preferred mode of writing: Pen & Paper or word processing
What’s your preferred time of writing?


Womblingfree: I use my laptop, although I’ve always got a couple of notepads or folders to hand where I can make notes or sketch a rough draft if for any reason using the computer isn’t possible.

I tend to write late at night, as with a job & a family to factor it is tricky, particularly as I have to be on my own to write. I was lucky to be able to rearrange my working hours last year though, so now I have a day ‘home alone’ during the week. I try and get the household chores out of the way so I can use it for writing if I’m working on a specific project.

Fanny:Thanks for having a chat with me and wishing you lots of inspiRAtion!


Saturday, March 17th

It’s almost over, oh noes! In fandom, Phylly3celebrates her second blogiversary! In the Hobbitchain, Antonia Romera compares trailers for An Unexpected Journey in three languages CDoart‘s the King Richard Armitage blogger, writing on the relevance of the character in times of questionable justice In fanfic, Jo Ann finishes her story fedoralady traces the evolution of her “sloth fic” series In freeform, Gratiana Lovelacerescreens her Armitage birthday vid Fabo casts Armitage in Hollywood musical remakes C.S. Winchester takes on Armitage in period costumes from N&S and Miss Marie Lloyd Links to all FanstRA 3 posts appear here at the end of each day