Rewriting Jane, an Austen-tatious move

July 15, 2011

Blog Guy, I read that a handwritten draft of a Jane Austen book that was never published just sold for $1.6 million at auction. The story said it was an unfinished work. She’s my very favorite author!

Yeah, I know all about that. I was the anonymous telephone bidder who bought the draft. I’m eating barbecue ribs and reading her manuscript right now. It’s not bad.

Be careful with that! What are you going to do with it?

Well, I’ve never read any of her stuff, but I did like “The Six Million Dollar Man” when it was on TV.

Are you stupid? That was Steve Austin. This is JANE AUSTEN.

Oh. Crap. Anyway, I’ve been doing some research, and I figure I can just finish writing her book myself, and then get $400 million or whatever.

She was famous for her romances about women on English country manors looking for suitable men, so I think I’ll update her story and have the heroine meet a rich and handsome country squire by liking his Facebook updates.

You’re going to rewrite Austen’s book? You can’t be serious. What would you call it?

I don’t know. Something to do with the Facebook theme. “Like and Likability…”

You’re an utter moron, Blog Guy.

“Poke and Pokability.”  “Share and Shareability”?

Blog Guy, I’ve been reading you a long time, and this Facebook thing may be the single worst idea you’ve ever had.

Ah. You think I should upgrade her to Google+?

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Top: Cast members (standing L-R:) Gemma Jones, Emilie Francois and Emma Thompson and (seated) Kate Winslet in a scene from the film “Sense and Sensibility,” based on the Jane Austen novel, in a 1996 file photo. REUTERS/Ho New

Right: Cover, “Pride & Prejudice”

Left: The painting “The Rice Portrait of Jane Austen” hangs in a gallery at Christies’ in a 2007 file photo. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

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21 comments

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Sorry, Blog Guy, but I think someone best you to it. Having had a peek at this manuscript, I’m pretty sure it is the source material for ‘The Simpsons’.

Posted by Nosmo_King | Report as abusive

I bet Jane Austen would follow our dear Lamar, no doubt to leverage on his contacts with the Linger-read fellows.

Posted by Malteser | Report as abusive

I actually like Jane Austen quite a bit..
I could almost get poetic with the reasons why..

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive

Ok people show of hands. Who did the 6 Million Dollar Man sound effect in their head? Come on I got mine up let’s see yours.

Posted by iflydaplanes | Report as abusive

Well sure, ifly, but I also included a link to the show’s opening, so you don’t even have to go to the work of thinking of it yourself.

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Why do I love Pride and Prejudice?

Posted by fwd079 | Report as abusive

Like that line, “…get $400 million or whatever.” Yes, most of my film-study graduate friends are in that category, earning pretty much whatever.

Posted by ladylala | Report as abusive

I’m getting pretty tired of pencil-editing her original manuscript. And I’ll tell you another thing, this old parchment paper doesn’t hold up well under barbecue sauce…

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

I vote for “Manfred Mann Park” myself.

Posted by skeres | Report as abusive

Mr B, I suggest liquid white-out for your editing. It’ll save your recopying the thing and it’ll cover the sauce stains too. I so look forward to the publication of this project. My Lamar has offered to limn the intro and we bloggers, the blurbs on the back. KA-CHING! I smell millions. Or whatever.
Now for the movie. “Emma let you finish” but Beyonce would make a memorable Miss Bennett.

Posted by ladylala | Report as abusive

BG, maybe you should hire a ghost writer to finish up the story. With the right psychic, you could even get Jane herself!

Posted by AllThatJazz | Report as abusive

Shra, you need to see “Lost in Austen” if you aren’t already familiar with it.

Also, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is impressively faithful to the original. Funnier, but a little less accurate than Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters…

Posted by CrowGirl | Report as abusive

Austen. I took a seminar on her when I was working on my Ph.D. Emma was on the reading list for the Comprehensive exams.

Persuasion was good. Mansfield Park is what the Devil reads out loud in Hell when he is sodomizing pedophiles.

Posted by DoctorDoll | Report as abusive

Plus and Plausability?

Posted by hmcfabulous | Report as abusive

Spin, Spin, Spin….

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Spin, noooo…. But when I taught film studies for a couple of semesters, I got a complimentary poster of Jayne Mansfield. That was my Mansfield perk.

Posted by DoctorDoll | Report as abusive

They don’t make them like this anymore.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RylzPrS3W pE&feature=related

Posted by DoctorDoll | Report as abusive

Mansfield Park is as bad as Northanger Abbey is good.

Posted by CrowGirl | Report as abusive

I forgot about Northanger Abbey. That one was good. Hereabouts, I hear the title pronounced as /nôrth’ān-jur and /nôrth’-ang-gur/. I’m curious how you pronounce it, CG.

Posted by DoctorDoll | Report as abusive

This is true. Our son read Northanger Abbey in THREE different undergraduate courses at college. By the third time I decided that either he or the school needed to broaden their horizons just a bit….

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Hmm.. is it a documentary, CG?
Doc, pretty sure, its pronounced nôrth’-ang-gur….

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive