I've been a bit swamped of late, hence the lack of blog posts. I'm in the middle of book tours involved with promoting To Defy A King. At the same time I've to keep up with the work in progress on the Empress Matilda and still find time for conversations with my family - usually when we meet at mealtimes or on the way to the gym!
I'm busy working on a longer blog post about Brian FitzCount. I thought when I began writing my story about the Empress Matilda and Adeliza of Louvain that he was going to be one of the male leads re hero material, but I've revised that opinion now. It's amazing what you think you know until you begin researching, and once you find out more about the people you are writing about, you realise that your novel plan might have to face a few alterations along the way. Brian still has a strong role, but the hero of the novel at the moment is turning out to be Adeliza of Louvain's second husband, William D'Albini. Anyway, he and Brian will have their moment further down the line with Brian next.
As well as the above, I was recently involved in a re-enactment at Nottingham Castle with Regia Anglorum to help Nottingham Council promote tourism and the new Russell Crowe film. I'm the one in the blue dress and linen hood scoffing custard tart. I had charge of the Conroi de Vey's cauldrons for a couple of days over the weekend. Among other items on the menu was a beef and cumin pottage, a broad bean, onion and smoked bacon pottage, herb pottage, pies a la Southwark cookshop, black puddings, haselet (a regional sausage-like meat), custard tarts and soft oatcakes. I also got to see an exhibition of costumes and props from the Russell Crowe film inside the castle museum. The props are great. There are some exact replicas of reliquaries and books and ecclesiastical details that are just fabulous. The costumes are mostly of the artistic interpretation. Maid Marion's hunting corset was decidedly far fetched! It's only a small, one room exhibit, but it is worth going to see if you're in the area.
Without further ado and as a filler in as I get on with my book tour and WIP and prepare my piece on Brian FitzCount, here are some photographs of the Nottingham show and a Regia show I didn't attend at St.Ives (with the horses and the boat) The photographs are all courtesy of Rosemary Watson. Click on the photo to enlarge.