Living as I do in the South of England, I have visited the city of Bath and the village of Chawton, both places where Jane herself used to live. The Regency splendor of Bath features in some of my own novels, and places like The Royal Crescent, The Assembly Rooms and Quiet Street are all very reminiscent of Jane, although Gay Street has a rather different resonance now than it had in her day!
Chawton is a beautiful, peaceful Hampshire village and the house where the Austens once lived is part-museum, part-celebration of Jane’s genius and part re-creation of late Georgian and Regency everyday life. I was going through a tough time in my life when I visited, and when I read about Jane’s slow and awful demise due to Addison’s disease, I wept openly.
Jane Austen will always, one way or another, be able to touch my heart.
Elizabeth Keysian felt destined to write historical romance due to her Cornish descent, and an ancestral connection to the Norse god Odin. Being an only child gave her plenty of time to read, create imaginary worlds, produce her own comics, and write sketches and a deplorably bad musical for an amateur dramatics group.
Three decades spent working in museums and archaeology fired Elizabeth’s urge to write, as did living on a Knights Templar estate, with a garage full of skeletons, a resident ghost and a moat teeming with newts.
Elizabeth lives near Bath in England with her partner and cats.