Author of Historical Romance

Advice from a Lady

Posted by on Nov 4, 2012 in Blog, Books, Featured, News, Uncategorized | 22 comments

Aunt Alice wants her own advice column/blog.  She is disgusted that I refuse to regularly post in mine and thinks it’s a dreadful waste.  So I’m going to see what happens.

Okay, world.  Readers.  The Brave Among You.

Aunt Alice, the *ahem* prim and proper woman of a certain age you know from “Revenge Wears Rubies” is online.  Send in your questions here and brace yourself.  I won’t be editing her responses.  Seriously.  I have no idea what she’ll say.  But if you have any dilemmas of the heart, relationships, or life in general, she is standing by.

Here we go.

 

22 Comments

Join the conversation and post a comment.

  1. Lindsey

    Dear Aunt Alice,
    I like a boy in my geometry class, but no matter how many times I bat my eyelashes or drop my pencil he never notices. What should I do?
    Sincerely,
    Shy girl in the corner.

    • Renee Bernard

      Dear girl,
      Let us assume that the boy is not soft-headed, for if he lacks intellect, then I fear your cause is lost. But as he appears to be in school and functioning, we shall proceed.
      Dropping pencils may not be wise as he might decide that you are simply clumsy or suffer from a palsy of some kind. The eyelash batting may have augmented this impression.
      Be bold! Fortune favors the bold! Create one of those diagrams (the one with intersecting bubbles, Ven diagram is it?) and lay out, very logically, your interests in him and in any mutual pursuits and then hand him the equation. Ask him to see if comprehends the answer and that you look forward to any time he cares to spend on the “problem”…
      And if he densely refuses to pursue your offer of “1+1 =2″ then he is clearly the idiot we’d assumed he wasn’t in our first line…
      And ignore the lump from now on.
      Yours sincerely,
      Aunt Alice

  2. Jackie Lycke

    I am trying to finish my novel and having a hard time getting my characters to behave. Any suggestions?

    • Renee Bernard

      Dear Jackie,

      Be firm. Fictional characters are notorious for their nonsense and I never invite them anywhere unless the guest list is already questionable or could use some livening up.

      Honestly, if they are not cooperating, then you must reapply your attention to the rules you, yourself, created. Are they not cooperating or have you asked them to do something beyond their scope?

      Never ask a tinker to dance in the ballet, my mother always used to say.

      (Although that might be funny!)

      Jackie, I’d advise a firm conversation where both sides listen until you’ve negotiated a truce or a happy ending for all.

      Good Luck!

      Aunt Alice

  3. Patricia

    Dearest Aunt Alice,

    My daughter has a boy in her class who’s giving her grief. He says she shouldn’t wear Spiderman tennis shoes to school because only boys wear Spiderman.
    What should I tell her because I want to really send this kid to time out–or something like it?
    Sincerely,
    Mamma Bear

    • Renee Bernard

      Dearest Mamma Bear,

      Spiderman tennis shoes sound dreadfully stylish and very daring, and I am in love with your daughter’s fashionable tastes!!

      Boys, as we all know, have the fashion sense of hedgehogs. Hedgehogs! But alas, they perceive otherwise and are quick to blather on about subjects better left to a female’s keen mind.

      She should advise this boy that his definition of what boys should do and wear is likely to cripple his future choices and land him in a match with a very very very dense and expensive girl. Poor thing.

      Between us, I would bribe his family’s housekeeper to drop a very red bit of silk into his wash to turn all his clothes pink… Ta da! Lesson learned!

      Love,
      Aunt Alice

  4. Renee Bernard

    Dear girl,

    Let us assume that the boy is not soft-headed, for if he lacks intellect, then I fear your cause is lost. But as he appears to be in school and functioning, we shall proceed.

    Dropping pencils may not be wise as he might decide that you are simply clumsy or suffer from a palsy of some kind. The eyelash batting may have augmented this impression.

    Be bold! Fortune favors the bold! Create one of those diagrams (the one with intersecting bubbles, Ven diagram is it?) and lay out, very logically, your interests in him and in any mutual pursuits and then hand him the equation. Ask him to see if comprehends the answer and that you look forward to any time he cares to spend on the “problem”…

    And if he densely refuses to pursue your offer of “1+1 =2″ then he is clearly the idiot we’d assumed he wasn’t in our first line…

    And ignore the lump from now on.

    Yours sincerely,
    Aunt Alice

  5. Miss R.

    Dear Aunt Alice,

    How does one over come being a wallflower? Is there some kind of method you would advise? Do I need to get some bells?

    Thank you for your advice,
    Miss R.

    • Renee Bernard

      To the Delightful Miss R,

      Never underestimate the power of bells! This is My FAVORITE subject and I have, in my time, transformed more than one wallflower into a Grand Lady!

      First of all, you have recognized your dilemma. It is a brilliant first step. Next, whatever you are doing that makes your spine come into contact with walls and corners, you must Stop It Immediately. My sister used to hide behind plants until I swore she was a lost african explorer….it was dreadful! But then, I gave her this advice which has since been copied ad nauseum and put on pillows– “Fake it until you make it!”

      Wear Red, Jewelry is Always a Good Idea to accentuate your best features and then, (here’s the critical step) IGNORE the dance floor. Turn your attention to lively conversations and to adding witty contributions of your own. Let the music of your laughter and the apparently confident and slightly disinterested turn of your shoulder transmit to every man there that you are: a) desirable, b) fascinating and c) happy to go on without their attentions.

      Which naturally means you will have all of their attention. Ah, the irony of men’s foolishness!

      And if you find yourself in the potted plants, move, woman, move! A fox in motion attracts the hunters, not one pouting in a burrow!!

      And then there are the bells….

      Keep me posted on your progress.

      Aunt Alice

  6. Kim in Hawaii

    Dear Aunt Alice,

    Would you like to be a guest on my blog? I believe my readers would like to know you!

    • Renee Bernard

      Dearest Kim,

      I should love to! My talents are lost and Ms. Bernard is forever shushing me, so it would be refreshing to feel welcome. Say the word and I will come (I will borrow this machine and do my best to make a good impression in your…virtual salon.)

      All the best,
      Aunt Alice

  7. Renee Bernard

    Dear Mr. Kemp,

    Your looks haven’t left you and I know a rogue fishing for compliments when I meet one. Ms. Bernard has shown me pictures of your lovely wife and shared stories of your charm and so I am a bit shocked that you find your confidence shaken when you have only to look across your breakfast table to be assured of your prowess.

    As to popularity, be careful. I’ve been using this new machine all day and uncovered some horribly popular things on YouTube that astound….and horrify….. Are you sure you wouldn’t rather just worry about pleasing your wife and the friends who already love you? I’m sure they won’t ask you to dance about Gangan style or streak across a rugby field….

    Besides, Ms. Bernard (who is very pushy) told me that she thinks you are very wonderful and headed for great success–something about gardens….

    Do you garden, Mr. Kemp?

    All the best,

    Aunt Alice

    • Danny Kemp

      You are very wise Auntie Alice and I will consider your words carefully. In the future I will follow your advice and avoid all temptation in the garden, particularly anything in tubes and streaking about. Please pass on my compliments to Ms Bernard, who is far from pushy which I’m sure you will recognise as you become more familiar with her.
      Stay in touch, as I detect a hidden ability here, one that needs more exposure to those like me; confused.

  8. Jeannine Meador

    Dear Aunt Alice,
    At last. I was so afraid Ms Bernard had locked you in a closet never to see the light of day. I am relieved to discover that even if locked up you were, at last you are free to steer us poor confused souls down the crocked and wide and into a life of cheer in spite of our bungling. Now if you could just tell me how to spirit my grandchildren across country… is there a spell I could cast??!!!
    Thank you, Aunt Alice. I have utmost confidence in your brilliance!

    Another Saucy Ole Lady

    • Renee Bernard

      Dear Fellow Saucy Lady (let us leave out the old, shall we?),

      I am certainly no sorceress, although I do know a few home remedies to make your toes curl…

      Grandchildren are a delight. I say this often to try to induce my niece, Lady Winters, to have at least five children for my own selfish pleasure. I am sure saucy women everywhere would agree that life is better when you have grandchildren at hand to indulge and direct toward wholesome mischief.

      If it were me, I would write an invitation to take them for a visit, relieving the parents of their care, and hinting that longer stays are less troublesome than shorter ones…if they are well-behaved children. (Then I would hire a nanny so that I didn’t collapse in a heap after the first three days, if they weren’t well-behaved…)

      You can of course, (NOT THAT I WOULD EVER DO SUCH A THING) pout and give your own children a lovely dose of guilty inducements, feigning illness and reminding them that your time on this earth is limited…

      If your grandchildren are not on your doorstep by Michaelmas, write me again and we shall take it to the next level. After all, we saucy ladies, have our ways, do we not?

      Your friend,
      Alice

    • Renee Bernard

      And also, I should have added, that I would never allow myself to be locked in a closet. Not unwillingly. And never without a good stash of sherry and some entertainment….

      Ms. Bernard is NOT in charge of me. I simply allow her the illusion.

      A

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