New Year’s Literary Resolutions

The New Year approaches and many people are attempting to choose their New Year’s resolutions.  To help with this important choice, I have compiled a list of advice about resolutions from several British Literary Greats.  Choose to implement this advice with sense and sensibility, or dismiss them as merely sound and fury, signifying nothing at your own peril.

 

British Literary Greats’ Guide to New Year’s Resolutions:

1. Do not: make resolutions based on anything said by weird sisters, or any trio of strange females.

2. Do not: make resolutions based on what you heard from the ghost of a family member.

3. Do: make resolutions based on what you heard from ghosts of time periods.

4. Do not: make resolutions about avoiding the opposite sex. It never works out.

5. Do: make resolutions based on telepathic communications from exes.

6. Do: make your resolutions without reference to any person wholly unconnected with you, particularly if they are cantankerous old women who have not been accustomed to language such as yours.

7. Do not: make resolutions based on one dance request.

8. Do: make resolutions based on letters from scorned lovers.

9. Do not: resolve to keep trophies from Dark Lords, even when they are vanquished.

10. Do not: make resolutions based on Turkish Delight.

 

15 points for every author you can name.  25 points for every title and author.  50 points for any new literary advice.

 

Enjoy your holidays and may the new year bring you good things, whether your resolution helps or hinders you.

Literary Classics Gift-Giving Guide

For those who prefer to get their advice from sources more reputable than Disney, I have here a few gifting tips from the literary classics.  Names of works or authors are accepted.  24 points per reference and 50 points to any new references you add.

 

Literary Classics  Gift-Giving Guide

 

1. Make sure to get gifts in the desired color-it keeps things rosy.

2. Don’t give gifts that are too big-it might become an invasion of their space.

3. Consider giving gifts you made yourself-anything that could become an intimate password response just makes home feel more yours.

4. Musical instruments are marvelous romantic gifts, if you can afford the right quality.

5. Things that light up are good gift ideas-it’s always good to have one more light in dark places, in case all other lights go out.

6. If your gift is taking someone else’s place for something distasteful, like chores, remember that it helps to have a good motto to get you through it-preferably about the satisfaction of giving.

7. If getting something engraved, be sure to include both your name and the recipient’s.  It might just help your name reach the ears of someone it’d be very interesting to meet.

8. Getting something in the recipient’s style is far more important than getting something more fancy or expensive.

9. Stories are even better gifts if you can make the recipient the star of the tale.

10. It’s generally agreed by the classic authors that medieval weapons are a great gift idea-more modern arms, not so much.

 

Hopefully these signposts will help you further along in your great holiday gifting quest.  Good luck!

King Richard III Day

Today is the day that Richard III took power!  However, during the Tudor dynasty Richard III became the target of one of the most successful slanders in history.  William Shakespeare could not afford to love the last Stuart ruler while under the Tudors’ reign.  Hence, Richard III became an ugly, vile character, as if Shakespeare decided:

“Since I cannot prove a lover, I am determined to prove a villain.”

 

Of course, good ol’ Will made the king so charismatic that he could use his play “Richard III” for other ends, as well:

Upon a time when Burbage played Richard III, there was a citizen grew so far in liking with him that before she went from the play she appointed him to come that night unto her by the name of Richard the Third. Shakespeare overhearing their conclusion went before, was entertained, and at his game ere Burbage came. Then message being brought that Richard the Third was at the door, Shakespeare caused return to be made that William the Conqueror was before Richard the Third.

— E. K. Chambers, William Shakespeare. A Study of Facts and Problems (1930), ii. 212
(from John Manningham’s Diary, Harl. MS. 5353, f. 29v, ed. J. Bruce (1868) ).

I just love that story.

 

The real Richard of Gloucester:

1. Was not a humpback.

2. Had nothing to do with the execution of his brother.  In fact, he even resigned one of his posts for a day so he wouldn’t be forced to have any hand in putting Clarence to death.  (Also, by all accounts Clarence was a really bad egg, particularly to Richard’s wife.)

3. Has lots of evidence that he treated his wife Anne well.

4. Was an excellent military commander.

5. May or may not have killed his nephews, the princes in the tower.  For the record, I happen to believe he is innocent, but the debate over who killed the princes is always fierce.  What better day to declare my side of it than that of Richard III’s triumph?