Welcome to my entry for the Classic Romance Revival Blog Carnival.
Leave a comment by March 1, 9AM Eastern Time for a chance to win a PDF copy of Lady of the Stars or a PDF copy of Pumpkinnapper. Note: You must check back after the contest closes to see if you’ve won. I will post the winner as a comment to this post as soon as possible after 9AM, March 1.
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My topic is Time. In my Regency novellas, time plays a prominent role.
In Lady of the Stars, my Regency time travel, when the heroine, Caroline, suspects she's traveled into the past, she asks Richard, the hero, what the day is. He answers the day is Wednesday, July 9, 1817. I checked. July 9, 1817 was a Wednesday. Here's the calendar for 1817.
I selected that date on purpose. Astronomy is a prominent part of Lady of the Stars. Caroline and Richard fall in love as they observe the stars. Bright moonlight washes out the stars, so part of the storyline had to occur when there was no moon to interfere.
From Lady of the Stars: "The clouds thinned that very day, and the next five nights were clear and moonless, perfect for observation."
These five nights occurred on days 4-9 of Caroline's sojourn in the past, July 12-16. According to the calendar, the new moon occurred on July 14. The new moon rises at sunrise and sets at sunset, so was not in the sky to interfere with their observations.
Romantic Times Book Reviews gave Lady of the Stars a 4 star review (contains spoilers). From the review: "a quick read and a delightful short romance." Thank you, Romantic Times. Lady of the Stars is also a finalist in the 2010 EPIC EBook Competition in Science Fiction Romance.
Pumpkinnapper, my Regency Halloween comedy, also makes use of the moon's phases. The story starts on September 28, 1816, at the moon's first quarter. Here's the 1816 calendar.
The times for Pumpkinnapper were more complicated because most of the action occurs in the dark after moonset. I found the times for moonrise/moonset using the US Naval Observatory website. The times are valid only with the correct latitude and longitude, which I found at the NGA GEOnet Names Server (GNS) .
At first quarter, the sun rises about noon and sets around midnight. Corrected for the latitude and longitude of Lindsell, Essex, England, using the above sites, moonset on September 28, 1816, occurred around 10PM.
Each day, the moon rises and sets about an hour later. The Pumpkinnapper climax occurs on the night before full moon, the night of October 4-5, when the moon sets after 3AM.
Here, Hank, the hero, waits until he can go to Emily's, the heroine's, house to try and catch the pumpkinnapper: "Hank glanced at the clock on the mantle above the fire. Only midnight. Moonset was at three, so he couldn't leave for at least another hour."
Why did I pick the dark after moonset? All kinds of things happen in the dark.
In Mistletoe Everywhere, my upcoming Regency Christmas novella, the climax occurs on Christmas Eve, 1814: "The almost full moon’s light glinted off the snow to bathe the area in a silvery glow." December 24, 1814 was two nights before the full moon. 1814 calendar here.
Do you like this level of detail in your stories?
Thank you all,