During the LetterMo challenge, the participants could earn different "achievement badges". If you ventured to a new postbox drop-off location, for example, or sent a birthday or valentine greeting, you'd get to display your achievement for the rest of the LetterMo community to admire/envy/mirror with their own.
One such achievement that I couldn't stand to NOT earn was the "Austen Style" badge. This puppy could only be earned if you emulated Jane Austen herself and broke out the parchment, quill, ink bottle and wax seal, finally sending the letter folded up as its own envelope. Bonus points if you wrote it in early 19th C language/subject matter. I sent out a few- three, to be precise- but none of them as Lucy Jane or in 19th C character. I just couldn't break into the time travel for some reason. (Where's a Tardis when you really need one? I ask you.) But my usual vocabulary/style of writing leans to the old fashioned as a habit, so they really weren't that bad.
One of the three was replied to, in Regency character! How could I not answer it back in kind*?? Finally, with her help, I had unlocked whatever the previous thing was that had blocked my writer's imagination. Using this fantastic resource on my hometown area in the late 1700s/early 1800s, I was able to flesh out Lucy Jane more than I have ever done, and really develop her backstory and history. It was marvelous fun to blend historical fact with fiction! My creative brain, rather starved for that sort of exercise and entertainment of late, just bloomed with one scene and timeline possibility after another until I think I may have enough to write a novel if I get it all down on paper. (NaNoWriMo, anyone?!) I always told myself I would never be a writer. I'm a terrible liar to myself. I'm not saying it will get published or make it to the NY Best Seller list, but who says it has to? I'm enjoying it. :)
Here are a couple of photos of my "Austen Style" offerings. I can't wait for Charlotte's next letter!
Have you ever sent a letter as a character? I'd love to hear about it!
*Although I have been SUPER busy lately and have not updated the website and/or blog in a few months, most of you know that I have a creative outlet under a pseudonym/character called Lucy Jane. If you are new here, follow the link to see "her" wares. :)