Tuesday, May 25, 2010
The Duchess of York: Less is Hartmoor
The Duchess of York's most recent humiliation is not something I wish to dwell on. But I notice that the Big Speak - "Home of the World's Best Motivational Speakers, Keynote Speakers, Consultants & Trainers!", to quote - still advertises Sarah as one of their top stars, available to inspire you for a fee starting at $41,000. Her promised words on "overcoming adversity" (eg "the unrelentingly vicious British press") and "the road to an authentic life" will now possess an especial resonance, I'm sure. Her bio on the site however may need fixing.
It claims: "The Duchess of York also published her first historical romance novel called Hartmoor, which is set in 1812 and draws vividly on her own noble ancestry in Ireland." Alas, not. For it was Madame Arcati who first reported last year that the unpublished novel, retitled Wingfield, appeared to be in trouble: I noted that Sarah's co-author, the splendidly named Dallas storyteller, Laura Van Wormer, no longer wrote of the book on her rarely updated website.
In response to my story, Laura announced in the autumn of 2009: "The Duchess and I are reconsidering our original publishing plan and are weighing a number of factors and options for the short term and also for the long run. As soon as we come to a decision about which path we are to take, you shall know straight away!" Plainly no decision has been reached for Laura has not mentioned the book since.
She'd written earlier last year: "At any rate, just to reiterate, yes, the Duchess of York and I did write a huge historical adventure novel, and yes, it has taken a long time to write, and yes, I should have definitive news for you by this summer." Perhaps she meant summer 2010?
Poor Laura. I shouldn't doubt she did most of the spade work and to date has nothing to show for it. In the meantime, the Big Speak may wish to update their public record on the duchess.