Romantic Fiction, Reality Shaping and The Work

R

R o l a n d

Guest
I didn't know there was a category for "The Unmarriageable" type in Romance novelis or novus. Just as in life. Which clarifies an assumption I've been under. This passive cherished instilled belief since child years. This is a curtain let adrift to help see reality. This is like having three parts in one with the curtain left adrift to see reality. The unknown the unmarriageable and the unknowable. Yet in this since this being applied to nonbeing and the other free flowing half is the known the married and the knowable. So is the other free flowing half potential latent? So is knowing binding for developing evolution and from a density perspective unifying by knowing or gravity/binding or merging and then God is all knowing unknowing because is never without the total forgetting of what not known therefore creation is forever because there is always something to know by the availability of the unknown which creates more learning?Like God holds together because gravity or God is consciousness and consciousness always knows. I know sounds like a paradoxical knowing. About the Romance Novels such is a micro of this binding love knowledge development of family and branching over to love and knowing each other and ourselves more intimately. Human beings are the greater of consciousness reading and transducing of existence.?
 

thorbiorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
How do you find a balance in your relationship with the community you grew up in if your circumstances end up becoming very different?

Reading Truly by Mary Balogh did not give me the answer, but made me think. It is a historical romance that takes place in Carmarthenshire in Wales and builds around the legends associated with the Rebecca Riots of the 1840ies named after the biblical character Rebecca the wife of Isaac.

It is a surprisingly different Balogh one encounter in this book. The protagonist is noble and wealthy now but has known ostracization from the Nonconformist congregation due to poverty and alleged illegitimacy. Upon his return, he faces isolation again, though for different reasons. Problems for him include finding acceptance among the people he knew and resolve the antipathy of his former friend and love who in the intervening years has lost her husband, in part due to his attempt to ignore and cut his connection to his traumatic past and the place he was born. The book also explores the tensions between human love and public Christian morality, male and female roles, the adult and the child, between pacifism and justifiable aggression, love and hate, greed and charity, the truth and the lie, between sin and virtue, between the requirement to uphold the law of the land and the need to protect one's community. In this historical romance, there are no ballrooms or fancy dresses, but like in a Regency romance, there is a happy ending. For the protagonist, there is reconciliation with his past and with the people of his community.

At one stage in the book, I wondered if the reaction of one of the characters was entirely believable, or should I say that stubbornness to not perceive the almost obvious was not, but then it would be nothing new compared to a few other books by Balogh. Maybe it is that a story can have glitches. Just like props for a stage performance are not real, so also a novel is written within constraints. Sometimes a hardly believable paragraph is what allows the story to go on for another 120 pages and find an overall more satisfying conclusion.
 

dennis

Jedi
I've finished "Only a Kiss' of the Survivor series. Imogen and Percy (Percival), he finds her living in his house while the dower house gets a new roof put on it, being delayed until he resolves the situation causing the impasse. His dog is named Hector. That brings up historical things- Troy, Alba Longa, the 400 year gap between 1200-800 BC, Venus (Aphrodite), Aeneas and his father, Velikovsky.

It is possible that the name Imogen may have originated as an accidental or purposeful misspelling of the name Innogen, itself a possible common Irish name meaning "maiden" or "girl".[1] Innogen is known as the name of a legendary British queen and was supposedly wife to King Brutus and mother of Locrinus, Albanactus and Camber.

My wife became disabled and unable to work some years ago (she was actually terminated because of her illness), so she took up the hobby of scrapbooking and card making. I built a small craft building for her and all the materials she uses and had a bit of fun while doing it.

De Divina Proportione, a three-volume work by Luca Pacioli, was published in 1509. Pacioli, a Franciscan friar, was known mostly as a mathematician, but he was also trained and keenly interested in art. De Divina Proportione explored the mathematics of the golden ratio. Containing illustrations of regular solids by Leonardo Da Vinci, Pacioli’s longtime friend and collaborator, DE Divina Proportione was a major influence on generations of artists and architects alike.

In mathematics and the arts, two quantities are in the golden ratio if the ratio of the sum of the quantities to the larger quantity is equal to the ratio of the larger quantity to the smaller one. Many artists and architects have proportioned their works to approximate the golden ratio—especially in the form of the golden rectangle, in which the ratio of the longer side to the shorter is the golden ratio—believing this proportion to be aesthetically pleasing. A golden rectangle can be cut into a square and a smaller rectangle with the same aspect ratio.

Fast forward to the popular “gambrel roof” barn. Roof slopes of 24/12 and 6/12 are proportioned with the golden ratio. The short side of the right triangle is one half the length of the long side of the triangle.

To create a gambrel roof with golden ratios…..

Intent can be called, of course, for anything, but sorcerers have found out, the hard way, that intent comes to them only for something that is abstract. That's the safety valve for sorcerers; otherwise they would be unbearable. Beckoning intent to resolve the conflict of your two minds, or to hear the voice of your true mind, is not a petty or arbitrary matter. Quite the contrary; it is ethereal and abstract, and yet as vital to you as anything can be.
Your album, being an act of war, demands a super-careful selection. It is a precise collection of the unforgettable moments of your life, and everything that led you to them. Concentrate in it what has been and will be meaningful to you. A warrior's album is something most concrete, something so to the point that it is shattering.
Sit down, alone, and let your thoughts, memories, and ideas come to you freely. Make an effort to let the voice from the depths of you speak out and tell you what to select.
The selection is not an easy matter. This is the reason I say that making this album is an act of war. You have to remake yourself ten times over in order to know what to select.
Don't include stories that relate exclusively to you as a person who thinks, feels, cries, or doesn't feel anything at all. The memorable events of a shaman's album are affairs that will stand the test of time because they have nothing to do with him, and yet he is in the thick of them. He'll always be in the thick of them, for the duration of his life, and perhaps beyond, but not quite personally.
In my time, not only did I not know what to choose, I thought I had no experiences to choose from. It seemed that nothing had ever happened to me. Of course, everything had happened to me, but in my effort to defend the idea of myself, I had no time or inclination to notice anything.
The stories of a warrior's album are not personal, not assertions about you as the center of everything. You feel, you don't feel; you realize, you don't realize. All of that type of story is just you.
The memorable events we are after have the dark touch of the impersonal. That touch permeates them. I don't know how else to explain this.
....
Listen to your inner voice. Don't listen to the superficial voice that makes you angry. Listen to that deeper voice that is going to guide you from now on, the voice that is laughing. Listen to it! And laugh with it. Laugh! Laugh!
* * *
It is the nature of infinity, once we cross a certain threshold, to put a blueprint in front of us.
 

Hesper

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
I finally finished Mary Balogh's Web Series and I am slowly getting the hang of observing my emotional reactions to the stories. What starts with boredom ("this drama is ridiculous" is a frequent thought that emerges) can change for me through observation and a little bit of effort. For me, these thoughts are probably a defense mechanism against decades of loneliness which I learned to deal with through the simple act of not caring and working instead. As a man should, I think, and I project this onto others as well. But there's a time for everything.

I feel fortunate to have once had an opportunity to experience what I think romantic love is. It was such a powerful experience, mixed with shared ecstasy, forgiveness for our faults and the desire to change, accompanied of course by the haunting realization of who we are not, and desire for the person we want to be with that drives the process. It is interesting and helpful, as I read these stories, to have this emotion stir up.

Now I'm on to another series, though I haven't determined which one it will be just yet.
 

Keit

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
I'm reading the last novel that I have on hand. I might try some Anne Gracie next. Haven't read any of her stuff yet.

Her Marriage of Convenience series is excellent. And there is also a bit of drama and mystery. :-)

I also finished the third Bridgerton book. The resolution was very satisfying.

It was very satisfying also because Aramintha reminded me of my mother, and I found Violet's handling of the issue and kindness as very comforting and healing.

And in general, I am happy with the way entire family is being portrayed, and how each sibling has their own issues, but thanks to the non-pathological and kind parenting that they received, they grew up to be good people.

And I don't know if this bit is present in the written book, but in audio version there is a second epilogue, where we get to see how things are resolved for brave Posy that helped Sophie.
 
R

R o l a n d

Guest
I finished "Brighter Than the Sun' by Julia Quinn. I enjoyed the story much although one too many use of the word 'strangle' involved; a description of their frustration I imagine. They weren't going to do each other any harm. Falling out of a tree and onto the ground knock almost unconscious for a young beautiful woman to come rushing to his aid. I guess meeting ones breaking point. Not completely enthralled by him yet but eventually the play of luxurious bitter sweet interactions with each other yield a whirl-wind the Eleanor and Charles into a relationship of organic newlywed contentment. Well after, a few hundred pages. So another example of light hearted romance.
Onto Dancing at Midnight another J.Q
 
R

R o l a n d

Guest
Hmm, what's the nucleus in these relationships. I don't think, between any two, it's of their full volition. Many of the romance stories seems to work out despite so many set backs. Even against some minor wishes of the characters involved opposition to each other. Mary Balogh, Elosia James, Julia Quinn Jennifer Ashely, ect.. I figure these stories are almost equivalent to reality, the happy endings to the potential in this reality. They happen so like being carried in a spatial dynamic one cannot escape, from which is why I think the unknown of this quality scares Men yet Women are often more okay with it like it's their domain also.
So gravity manipulates the characters for a wonderful offspring. that's a pretty jaded claim to gravity. Over thinking an already simple plot. A convincing story the author(s) has to forge their will into not only the story but also characters and is the characters different then the story? Vision and inner sight to guide the whole of the story.
 

Ennio

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
I really liked the Bedwyn Saga by Mary Balogh, I am currently working my way through Wescott and it's working its magic :)

I'm reading the Westcott series, too, at the moment - and greatly enjoying these stories. One of the things that has impressed me the most, I have to say, is Balogh's descriptions of the protagonists' thought processes - especially as these characters are holding thoughts, pretty much simultaneously, that are utterly contradictory! One of the great values to these stories is seeing how these characters work out these conflicting thoughts, feelings and motivations and effectively work on themselves enough to bridge the distance between themselves and their love interests. And, wow, do some of these passages seem to ring true.
 

Jones

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
One of the things that has impressed me the most, I have to say, is Balogh's descriptions of the protagonists' thought processes - especially as these characters are holding thoughts, pretty much simultaneously, that are utterly contradictory!

And also assuming what the other is thinking. Gosh, what a mess that creates at times!
 

dennis

Jedi
Ra gave the card game analogy that might describe the above noted thought processes. Apparently its by design.

50.7 Questioner: Thank you. Can you expand on the concept which is this: that it is necessary for an entity to, during incarnation in the physical as we call it, become polarized or interact properly with other entities and why this isn’t possible in between incarnations when he is aware of what he wants to do, but why must he come into an incarnation and lose memory, conscious memory of what he wants to do and then act in a way that he hopes to act? Could you expand on that please?

Ra: I am Ra. Let us give the example of the man who sees all the poker hands. He then knows the game. It is but child’s play to gamble, for it is no risk. The other hands are known. The possibilities are known and the hand will be played correctly but with no interest.

In time/space and in the true-color green density, the hands of all are open to the eye. The thoughts, the feelings, the troubles, all these may be seen. There is no deception and no desire for deception. Thus much may be accomplished in harmony but the mind/body/spirit gains little polarity from this interaction.

Let us re-examine this metaphor and multiply it into the longest poker game you can imagine, a lifetime. The cards are love, dislike, limitation, unhappiness, pleasure, etc. They are dealt and re-dealt and re-dealt continuously. You may, during this incarnation begin — and we stress begin — to know your own cards. You may begin to find the love within you. You may begin to balance your pleasure, your limitations, etc. However, your only indication of other-selves’ cards is to look into the eyes.

You cannot remember your hand, their hands, perhaps even the rules of this game. This game can only be won by those who lose their cards in the melting influence of love; can only be won by those who lay their pleasures, their limitations, their all upon the table face up and say inwardly: “All, all of you players, each other-self, whatever your hand, I love you.” This is the game: to know, to accept, to forgive, to balance, and to open the self in love. This cannot be done without the forgetting, for it would carry no weight in the life of the mind/body/spirit beingness totality.
 

thorbiorn

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Establishing relationships among fictional characters and their relevance to real life
Mary Balogh ensures a happy ending in her novels, but never a happy-ever-after since the people have to keep working at it. While I have read the novels with regard to what triggered me, or how the characters helped each other and those around them, I have paid less attention to the credibility of the relationships that are explored in the stories. Then I read a recent blog post, where the author explains how she comes up with the heroes and heroines.
Below are excerpts with a few comments to connect fictional plots to real life:
Matching Heroes and Heroines
By marybalogh
Posted May 10, 2021 In Blog 141
When I am getting ready to begin a new book, the first thing that is likely to come to my mind is either the hero or the heroine (not, alas, both together). If I am in the middle of a series, this step is relatively easy as there will be a number of ready formed characters waiting for their stories to be told. Even when a series is finished, there will often be some minor characters within it who would very much like to have their own stories. Failing either of these options—or if I am beginning a new series—I will let my imagination roam until a promising character comes to mind, almost entirely unformed and undeveloped, but at least there. I can often picture that character in a vague setting or a vague situation and in dire need of a whole story. Yes, it really is that vague when I begin to dream up a new book.

And of course that character has to be matched up with a suitable mate. This can be hard. Occasionally the perfect match comes easily to me, but more often it does not. So how do I do it.
Maybe the difficulty of finding a suitable partner for a fictional character mirrors difficulties in real life.

In real life, it happens that a partnership is formed between people who are already acquaintances, friends, teammates, or colleagues. This is similar to the description below where a former minor character is matched to the first chosen protagonist. Balogh writes that the development of the story revolves around the resolution of previous issues in both characters. In other words, merely their meeting is not in itself sufficient to ensure that they will enter into a mutually beneficial and lasting relationship.
Sometimes I will find the character I need in a previous book. I always love it when that happens because that character already has existence in my imagination and has been partially developed as a minor character in another book. When I came to write SIMPLY LOVE, for example, I knew it would be Anne Jewell’s story—she was one of the four teachers in the SIMPLY quartet. I knew her quite well. She had appeared in the first book of the series (SIMPLY UNFORGETTABLE) and she had made an earlier appearance in SLIGHTLY SCANDALOUS, part of the Bedwyn saga. She was a deeply wounded character, a single mother in Regency England, the victim of a sexual assault she had endured herself in order to shield the mentally challenged girl to whom she was governess. She had been dismissed from her position, largely shunned by the community in which she lived, and rejected by her fiancé and her parents. When I searched my mind for a suitable hero for Anne, I immediately thought of Sydnam Butler, brother of Kit in A SUMMER TO REMEMBER. Sydnam was a one-armed, one-eyed, severely burned survivor of savage torture during the Napoleonic Wars. I was not at all sure he was going to be a good choice for Anne. They were both perhaps too wounded to be able to help each other and to forge a lifelong bond of love. But I took on the challenge anyway, and I think I made it work. Certainly I got passionately involved in the writing of their love story. Many readers name SIMPLY LOVE as one of their favorites among my books.
If the second character to be matched with the chosen protagonist does not already exist in a different story as a minor character, then it needs to be created by the imagination. Such a character can either be similar or dissimilar to the first protagonist. Here is what Balogh writes about imagining a partner who is similar to the main protagonist.
At other times, though not often, I pair up two characters who are alike in many ways. Freyja Bedwyn and Joshua, Marquess of Hallmere, in SLIGHTLY SCANDALOUS, for example, are both alpha types, and sparks fly from the moment of their first meeting. The same is true of Jocelyn, Duke of Tresham, and Jane Ingleby in MORE THAN A MISTRESS. [...]
In real life, the parallel to the above is that many relationships are between people who are quite similar. See this article: Psychology Today: Oil and Vinegar: Why Opposites Don't Attract, or Medical Daily: Do Opposites Attract Or Does Like Attract Like In Relationships? Understanding The Science Of Love, or Insider: 'Opposites attract' is a total myth in relationships — here's why you're likely to seek a partner who's just like you
As an example, here are two paragraphs about what makes relationships last from the article in Medical Daily mentioned earlier:
The Formula for a Happy and Healthy Couple = Shared Values & Beliefs
The best formula for a happy and healthy couple is: you both share common values and ethics, you share a common core--not details-of issues from your family of origin such as you were both mistreated or you both were the least or most favorite - and you have different, complementary styles and personalities in approaching life and solving problems,” Dr. LeslieBeth Wish, psychologist and licensed clinical social worker in Florida told Medical Daily in an email. It is when couples find those commonalities, especially if they are not apparent on the surface, is when they feel they’ve found a potential life-long partner. We tend to seek out people who think and act like us, or some of us may even be seeking our own mirror image, which has been found to contribute to relationship satisfaction.

Newlywed couples are found to have happier and satisfying marriages when they have more in common personality-wise, as opposed to attitude-wise. A 2005 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology investigated attitude similarity — having the same religion, or personal belief system — and personality similarity — qualities like anxiety, agreeableness, extraversion, and conscientiousness — between newlywed couples to determine what makes two individuals choose to be with each other rather than with one of many other potential partners. The study supports the belief that like-minded people validate each other’s beliefs and views, and therefore, this results in fewer conflicts.
If "opposites attract" is a myth, it does not prevent Balogh from using conflict in order to conjure up the second protagonist:
More often, I find a partner for my already chosen hero or heroine in an opposite type—according to the old adage that opposites attract. In fact, if I am having a particularly hard time finding a suitable match, I will ask myself who is the type of person least likely to end up in a happy, lifelong relationship with this particular character.
[...] I have chosen that method a number of times and love the challenge of convincing readers that this relationship can and will last and bring happiness to the protagonists. The two of them have to work out their own issues, though, as well as their incompatibilities with each other before the love they have come to feel for each other can be real and secure enough to lastif they work at it every day for the rest of their lives. Making the reader accept this happy outcome as believable is my job as a writer.
Could it be that in her novels about relationships between opposites, Balogh mentions examples like The Notorious Rake, The Proposal, Someone to Trust, and Someone to Love, that the characters are only superficially opposites but share or come to share similar values at a deeper level?

In the future, I am going to give more consideration to whether I find not only the outcome believable but also if it is likely the protagonists will continue "to work at it every day for the rest of their lives" and remain together for mutual benefit. Using that perspective on fictional relationships might enhance understanding of the variety in the duration and quality of relationships in real life.
 

trytofly

Jedi
I also finished the third Bridgerton book. The resolution was very satisfying.

It was very satisfying also because Aramintha reminded me of my mother, and I found Violet's handling of the issue and kindness as very comforting and healing.

And in general, I am happy with the way entire family is being portrayed, and how each sibling has their own issues, but thanks to the non-pathological and kind parenting that they received, they grew up to be good people.

And I don't know if this bit is present in the written book, but in audio version there is a second epilogue, where we get to see how things are resolved for brave Posy that helped Sophie.
For the books written about the Bridgertons, the second epilogues are gathered in an additional work: "The Bridgertons: Happily ever after".
It also contains a conclusion to the story of Violet, the mother of the family.
 
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