The Life & Times of Marie de Rohan Part 2 is ongoing.
If you are interested….the fight continues.
The Palace of the Louvre, Paris – August 1625
Marie de Rohan knelt on bare boards before the King of France, head bowed, listening. So, Buckingham had kept his promise.
Paris -April 1622 – PART TWO
The words glittered maliciously inside Wat’s head. Eyes shut; he put hands to his ears and groaned.
“Listen, my boychild of a gillyflower. Your ears belong to me now and I want to know everything they hear. Withhold nothing from me. I am the judge of what’s important and what’s not. Little words lead to more than you can ever imagine.”
‘Damn you to hell and back for all eternity,’ Wat muttered and then started as a gentle voice rebuked him.
He opened his eyes.
The large, wet, bunched figure on the opposite side of the table spoke again.
‘I said, “Beware such heartfelt curses, they are apt to rebound.”’
Very little face showed beneath the pulled down beaver hat, very little body under the fine leather overcoat.
Wat sat still, every muscle tense, the pasty a lump in his stomach. The other man did not move either but for a wink of firelight inside his shadowed eyes.
‘Here’s a long way from the days and nights we shared so recently in Cambridge.’
‘Rats, lice, and Scotsmen: you find them the whole world over.’ Wat relaxed. Both anger and laughter sat close by. ‘What the hell are you doing here, Jamie?’
Decided to post bite size snippets of Work in Progress in order to sharpen the brain box.
Paris, April 1622…PART ONE
The Caberet des Lanternes folded around Wat Montagu as he sat, filthy and damp, his spirits somewhere down there with the mud on the soles of his boots. Neither fire nor fragrant steam rising from the beef and marrow bone pasty set below his nose could raise any joy inside his bitten tiredness.
The serving girl passed him again, giving a faint and puzzled smile this time. Wat set to spooning crumbling pastry and spiced meat into his mouth. His mood moved slowly to ankle height until the echo of a voice crept to overlay the rumbling and laughter of a room full of people.
“Walter, darling brat, I want information. And I want you to get it for me. Bury that soft poet’s heart of yours and come back a man. Without the pox, if you can manage it.”
What does a writer (unpublished) do when told by someone in the publishing industry that although she (the writer) has an impressive knowledge of history, there is far too much of it going on in her Historical Fiction novel?
And – that her Main Character is not famous enough for anyone to EVER be interested in reading her story?
My main character – Marie de Rohan – helped drive a fundamental change in 17th century European history. Her story can’t be told without this ‘history’ aspect. She was interesting enough for Alexandre Dumas to write about her and for Marcel Proust to mention her in his Remembrance of Things Past. Also – Queen Victoria was on the throne when the last major study of her life happened.
Both comments have utterly floored me for a while now. Are these industry wide thoughts?
Is there no room anymore for the new subject – a Scarlett O’Hara rather than sweetie-pie?
No room for the pure, un-PC historical without pages of velvet bodices and excruciating post- Freudian self-examination?
I don’t – I can’t – believe that this is true. Am I wrong? Do you have any thoughts about marquee names and watered down history? Help, please!
Picking myself off the floor now.
I’m stubborn enough to carry on regardless. Just not sure which way to turn!!
This is the coat of arms for Marie de Rohan, Duchesse de Chevreuse. The de Rohan family were descendants of the Visconti, hence the, biscione or the sinner eating serpent of Milan in the centre of their arms.
Below are the arms of Claude de Lorraine, Duc de Chevreuse – Marie’s second husband.
A CLEVER DUCHESS; Marie de Rohan as Pictured by H. Noel Williams
New York Times – January 18, 1914, Sunday
I was absolutely delighted to find the above article by chance today.
It was written in January 1914 to coincide with the publication of Hugh Noel William’s biography of Marie de Rohan ~ A Fair Conspirator.
In the days before I had a computer and a photocopier, I borrowed this book from the library and copied virtually every word of it out by hand. It took weeks…and more than one overdue fine!
Mr Williams did not seem to like his ‘Fair Conspirator’ very much. The biography has moments of high judgment and low opinion, but he tells her story with great passion.