Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Update about Outlander on Starz: Ron Moore Has Fellow Writers!

Sit DOWN Y'all...cause there's OUTLANDER/STARZ info on the horizon!!!!

Check out the info from deadline.com:

Outlander, Diana Gabaldon’s bestselling fantasy/romance/adventure series of books, is slowly inching to the screen. No greenlight from Starz yet, but I’ve learned that the project has opened a writers room, with Battlestar Galactica developer Ron Moore, who is spearheading the drama series adaptation, hiring four scribes to work with him. The move indicates that Starz is contemplating a potential straight-to-series order forOutlander, a route the pay cable network has taken with most of its original series. Joining Moore on Outlanderare two writers who have worked with him before —Battlestar alumna Toni Graphia and Caprica‘s Matt Roberts — along with veteran showruner Ira Behr (Alphas, The 4400) and Anne Kenney (LA Law, Switched At Birth).

I cannot tell you how happy I am to have some kind of update!  I sat on my hands in Fairview, undersatanding it was an event that was sponsored by a library...and discussions of TV series were probably not going to happen.  And although I'm not always sure how I'll fell once the series shows up on Starz...I can't help but get a little giddy when I see updates like this!!!!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Sooz Does It Again!

"Keep Calm and Read Gabaldon"
OK so I told you we went to Fairfax to see Diana Gabaldon this past weekend.  But did I mention the shirts?!?

Holy cow.  For those of you who don't know MOP-bud, Sooz, she hand-made adorable dachshunds last year for Diana - as well as Tracey and myself.  Well...I'm glad to say that Sooz has done it again!

Look at these gorgeous shirts Sooz made for Diana!  They are spectacular!!

They are beautiful!  She does all the embroidering on a Janome 350e Memory Craft Embroidery Machine and produces the designs with software called Embroidery 5D with added alpha characters from embroidery.com (Jacobean letters).  I cannot tell you how amazing the colors are up close!

Telling DG about Sooz's shirts...
Sooz sent the shirts to my house and I carried them on to Fairfax for her.   I let Diana know that Sooz made them for her and did the embroidering herself...and when I said "Sooz is the one who made you the..."  she said "dachshunds!"  and remembered right away, which I thought was verra cool, sassenachs.

Tired, post Fairfax...yet
PROUD in my
custom-made shirt from Sooz!
Sorry for the wrinkles but they were packaged up with a pretty little bow for most of the trip.

My most sincere THANKS go out to Sooz for not only making them for Diana, but for making one for Tracey and myself as well. :)

You can see the close ups of the embroidery below:

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

April 16, 1746: Remembering Culloden

Can you hear them?  Can you see them marching proudly across the Moor?

Hear the wind blow through the drifting snow.  Tell me, can you see them?

The ghosts of Culloden...

Monday, April 15, 2013

Weekend at Fairfax

What is UP???  I am finally getting to sit down and post about Tracey and my faBU weekend in Fairfax, Virginia with some verra awesome MOP chicks.  I finally was able to meet the wonderful Karen Henry of Outlandish Observations (just sitting with her at a Diana Gabaldon event was a treat!)...and was able to spend some seriously quality time with Lara, Tonya, Cari, Julie and Donna.  I was also thrilled to see Carla again...and to finally meet Miss Marcia!

My apologies that I was not able to do all the blogging I had hoped to do.  We were go, go, going, nonstop from the minute we arrived...and blogging ended up on the back burner.

OK so we arrived on Friday afternoon and headed over to the Northern Virginia Community College to find the girls first in line, as they had been waiting all afternoon (bless their hearts!)  We were thankfully able to sit up front and were thrilled when DG showed up and began to speak.  I cannot tell you how awesome it is to listen to her tell her story of how she got started writing, as I've been sitting on a story or two, myself...and am in dire need of direction.

Not much new to report, however; the speaking portion of the event was pretty short and didn't include any info about the upcoming Starz show (probably because it was a library event, and that means books.)

We then proceeded to hang out for hours and wait for the signing line to shrink - which is most certainly did not, for hours and hours.  At 2AM (yes, you read that right), we finally got our books signed and were able to take a photo with Diana.  We were the last in the line and felt horrible for her; she must have been exhausted.  I was also THRILLED with a capital T to be able to give her the BEAUTIFUL shirts that Sooz made for her (another verra cool MOP bud);  that post will follow.

The rest of the weekend was a blast because I got to hang out with women I've been talking to for a few years now - some on a daily basis.  We didn't do anything scheduled (again - sorry to those who may have been hoping for a better gathering; we'll do that again, I promise!) but we had a blast and I'm sorry it had to end.  :)

Outlander Chat Tonight

Outlander Chat tonight.  9PM Eastern.  (Tracey is on vacation in Mexico...but I will be there.  Not sure how long I'll be there (yawnnnn - still catching up from the weekend in Fairfax!)  but I'll be there.  ;)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Verra Cool eBay Find of the Day

Check out this 1746 bronze Battle of Culloden medal, featuring William, Duke of Cumbria.  Wish it were featuring Bonnie KING Charlie...but, alas...it was not to be.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Execution of Simon Fraser, Lord Lovat

On April 9th, 1747, Simon Fraser,  Lord Lovat and chief of Clan Fraser (and fictitious father of Jamie Fraser's bastard father, Brian Fraser), was executed at the Tower of London for his "crime" of being a Jacobite and aiding in the Jacobite rebellion to get Bonnie Prince Charlie back on the throne and reestablish Scottish rule.

Lord Lovat has the distinction of being the last person to be beheaded at the Tower of London.

Just prior to the execution, about 20 people were also killed when the scaffolding they were sitting on to watch Simon Fraser's demise, collapsed.  Apparently, Simon found this so amusing, he laughed uncontrollably until the axe fell, thus creating the term, "laughing your head off".

Simon Fraser, Lord Lovat, as etched by William Hogarth at St. Albans.
Lovat is seen working on his memoirs as he awaits trial. 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Da Vinci's Demons - A New Starz Original Series

Wondering what the Outlander series might "feel" like on Starz?  Check out the new "De Vinci's Demons" - starting this Friday, April 12th.

Outlander Chat TONIGHT

Outlander Chat tonight.  9PM Eastern.

UPDATED Fairfax Info!

This just in from Ted Kavich of the Fairfax County Library:

Hello and thanks for registering for the Diana Gabaldon event scheduled for this Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the Gymnasium, Ernst Community Cultural Center on Northern VA Community College’s Annandale campus (8333 Little River Turnpike, Annandale 22003).  Details, including parking info and a link to driving directions/campus map, are here:
Please note: the lots that are reserved for free event parking – B-8 through B-15 and B-17 – are available after 6:00 p.m.  If you want to arrive before 6:00, you’ll need to pay to use the parking garage (adjacent to the surface lots right next to the Ernst Center).  In case you require handicapped parking, it is available right across from the Ernst Center (spaces are marked) or in lot C-1.

This event is SOLD OUT and there is a waiting list.  If your plans have changed, please cancel your registration so someone else can attend.  The link to cancel is in the reminder message you received, or you can email (or call 703-324-8428) and we’ll take care of it for you.

When you arrive, please enter through the atrium of the Ernst Center.  Doors to the gym will open at 6:45 p.m. so please try to arrive by that time (or earlier) so everyone can get seated and ready for the program to begin.  Seating is first come, first served with chairs on the floor of the gym and additional space on bleachers.  Note: as long as you secured a spot online, you don’t have to bring a printed copy of your registration email to the event.  Also note: if you require handicapped seating, please let one of the ushers know and they will assist you.

The Library Foundation is expected to start selling books in the atrium before the event and we are hoping to have some pre-signed copies available.  There will be an assortment of Diana’s books for sale, and you may also bring your own copies.  The queue for book signing will form in the atrium immediately after Diana’s talk and Q&A.  In the interest of time, there will be a limit of 2 books per person, and we ask that you help us keep the line moving by minimizing your time at the signing table.  If you want to get additional items signed, you are welcome to get back on the end of the line and wait for a second turn.

Thanks and we’ll see you on Friday!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

April 1778 Fraser Salt Works SHOCKER!

The Shark River salt works was destroyed immediately following the attack
on the Union salt works on the Manasquan river in Brielle, New Jersey.  
I've been doing some historical digging this weekend as it's the anniversary of the burning down of the "Union salt works" and dozens of houses and buildings in my town - Brielle, NJ - by British loyalists during the Revolutionary war.  Salt was extremely important in those days for preserving meats and other foods...as well as making gun powder, which was obviously needed in the war.  

What does this have to do with OUTLANDER?  Well...I came across something while googling the salt works yesterday, and nearly fell off my chair:

Manasquan River Inlet, New Jersey...

Captain Boyd Porterfield, 71st Regiment Fraser’s Highlanders, April 7, 1778, Raid to destroy the salt works on both sides of the Manasquan River. The saltworks on the north side (now Brielle) was known as the Union Salt Works. ... Where: Manasquan River Inlet. Both sides north now Brielle, Monmouth County and south is Point Pleasant, Ocean County, New Jersey. ... Source: Henry Clinton Papers at the William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan. Item is document number 33:15 (Box 33 folder 15). ... British Headquarters Military Report. ... Maps: Close UTM 18 580246E 4440304N (NAD27) [40.11119 -74.0580 (WGS84)]

You don't even know the chills I had (or the fit I threw at my husband!) when I read this.  I've been waxing on about the Union salt works being burned down in my own back yard for years...but now I find out that  FRASER'S HIGHLANDERS were responsible?  I'm completely torn and on the fence about it.  On the one hand, I'M AN AMERICAN and they ATTACKED MY TOWN.  On the other...they were Scots...and went through horrific atrocities while fighting the English.  I keep telling myself these men were left with nothing and had to feed their families back in Scotland, and therefore had no choice but to fight for the crown...but wow.  Just...wow.  And it doesn't help that some people say the Scots "flocked to the cause."

(My Scottish-American husband and I just got into a heated debate over this...ME defending the SCOTS!  It's really unsettling, that is for sure.) 

Make sure you read the Fraser's Highlander's wiki link; it's chock full of Fraser mentions, Stirling Castle being one of them.

AND - check out this adorable house on Union Lane in Brielle, NJ.  It is believed that this house was the only house on Union Lane that was not burned down in the attack on the salt works in Brielle.  You won't believe how they've restored it.  It's absolutely stunning...and every effort was obviously made to infuse the 18th century feel with the modern conveniences of the home.  Truly outstanding. 

Friday, April 5, 2013

FAIRFAX: One Week From Today!

Get ready for some serious MOP shenanigans, y'all!

Entertainment Weekly Interview with Diana Gabaldon

HOLY COW!  Check out the amazing Entertainment Weekly interview with HERSELF, Diana Gabaldon.  And LOOK!  It's the official MOBY COVER!!!  LOVE!!!  The gorgeous seal looks 3D!  I cannot WAIT to own this book!!!

Fairfax Library Event: Questions for Diana Gabaldon

From Ted Kavich of the Fairfax County Library:

Hello and thanks for registering for the Diana Gabaldon event on April 12.  The date is drawing near and final preparations are underway – we are all very excited to be hosting Diana and welcoming such a great crowd of fans.

Stay tuned for news about when the doors will open, book signing, etc.  But first – we are seeking questions for our moderator, Wendi Kaufman, to ask Diana during the Q&A portion of the event.  We’d love for the fans to submit questions, then we’ll pick our favorites to use at the event.  Here’s how to pose your question:

1.       Visit the Fairfax County Public Library’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/fairfaxcountylibrary.  The message asking for questions should be easy to find – it was just posted today.
2.       Leave your question as a “Comment” below the posting.  If you see that someone else has already asked your question, try to think of a different one that’s even better.  J
3.       Deadline for submissions is Monday, April 8.

Thanks so much!  See you on 4/12.