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INTERVIEW: Indie Author Lory Lilian Prefers Control of Her Books

Updated: May 3


Welcome to the Tuesday Author Interview with Christina Boyd for the Who, What, When, Where, and Why.


CHRISTINA: I have been a fan of Austenesque author Lory Lilian since the days when Jane Austen fan fiction (JAFF) was only online. I was impressed to learn that though she wrote all her stories in English, English was not her native tongue as she is Romanian, living in Bucharest. Several years later, when I began curating my dream team for my multi-author anthology The Darcy Monologues, I was thrilled when she agreed to contribute a story.


When did you first think you had a book to write and how did you start? 

 

LORY: It was such a long time ago! In 2004, I started reading JAFF at DWG (Derbyshire Writers’ Guild) and soon became hooked— obsessed! A couple of months later, I started to write Rainy Days and publish it on that site, chapter by chapter. The instant success of the story blew me away. I did not expect it. I finished Rainy Days in four months, over 150-thousand words, then I enhanced it and published it again on another site. The comments I got were so rewarding and inspiring that I kept writing.

 

Three women at a table holding THE DARCY MONOLOGUES book.
That time when authors Lory Lilian, Joana Starnes, and Caitlin Williams met up for tea and signed their copies of THE DARCY MONOLOGUES anthology. 2017

CHRISTINA: Goodness, I remember reading those serialized stories. I'd wait for them to post and gobble them up.


Why did you choose the publishing path you chose: self-publish vs. traditional?

 

LORY: I started this adventure in 2009 with Meryton Press, and it was a great experience. I met some wonderful people from whom I learned a lot. Five years later, after a series of changes in my real life as well as in the industry, I chose self-publishing. I prefer to have complete control over my books, from the covers to the publishing schedule. It’s not an easy road, but I had my dear readers’ support all along the way.

 

CHRISTINA: What a journey, and what an impressive backlist now!


If you could have dinner with three people, who would be at your table—and how might that go?

 

LORY: Ha, ha, do they have to be alive? Or real? If not, one would be Jane Austen, of course. I would ask her for more details about how she imagined Elizabeth and Darcy’s engagement period. The other two would be Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. I have loved Pride and Prejudice since I was thirteen, but their interpretation drew me into the world of JAFF.

 

CHRISTINA: Do you know I never saw it when the 1995 series premiered? I didn't see it till after the Joe Wright's 2006 adaptation with Matthew Macfadyen and Keira Knightly.


What comes first, plot, or characters?

 

LORY: My focus is always on Elizabeth and Darcy. I write JAFF because of my love for them and their story, and I could not imagine writing a JAFF story that’s not centered on them. I know it’s a flaw and a weakness, but I accept it. Then I usually bring in an original character, which creates a new plot and introduces other original characters.

  

CHRISTINA: I like when you introduce your own characters to a variation.


If you could tell your 21-year-old-self anything, what would you share?

 

LORY: “Quit your job in business and focus on writing full-time as soon as Amazon allows self-publishing.”  


Lory standing behind a concrete bench, painted with a Darcy and Elizabeth and a letter in script.
Lory and the #sittingwithJane project in Winchester, 2017.

CHRISTINA: What’s more difficult to write? A love scene or a love letter or something else?

 

LORY: Ha, ha. I love writing love scenes; this is the easiest thing for me. The most difficult for me to write is angst, though I have written three long and very angsty books, which readers seemed to like. I am pretty proud of them, but I doubt I will write anything similar anytime soon.

 

CHRISTINA: Well, you are the Queen of Hot Mush...


Best advice for new writers:


LORY: I cannot say how good they are, but here are my two cents: know the story you want to write, know the readers who you hope will enjoy your story, and get a very good editor.

  

CHRISTINA: Yes! I was just telling a new author that you should write the story you want to write and hopefully it's the story a reader wants to read. If you understand your reader, hopefully you can do both.


So far, what is your greatest accomplishment as a writer?

 

LORY: Two of my books have reached around Amazon Sales rank #230; and Rainy Days, my first story, is still purchased, read, and reviewed twenty years later. Also, I am fortunate enough to be able to support myself from writing.

 

Lory smiling in front of great house
Lory visiting Lyme Park in Disley, Cheshire, England with other Janeites in 2017.

CHRISTINA: That's wonderful. Congratulations.


If you weren’t a writer, what would you be?

 

LORY: Well, I was first a qualified nurse. Then I graduated from the Faculty of Law. Then I stepped into the business world and worked first in sales, then as an HR Manager, then as a trainer. I enjoyed every step in my professional life, but for the last five years, I have been a full-time writer with all my heart, and I plan to stay here.


CHRISTINA: That's quite a vitae!

   

Have you gone on an author pilgrimage or research trip? Where and what was the most memorable moment?

 

LORY: I took a ten-day trip to the UK in July 2017. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet several JAFF friends and to visit many Jane Austen-related places, including Lyme Park. I still remember the thrill when I saw Pemberley; it was an exciting, inspiring, unforgettable feeling. I also attended Jane Austen’s commemoration in Winchester, which was magical and heartwarming. The entire trip was a dream come true, and I hope to repeat it next year.


CHRISTINA: I hope you can do the trip, too. Thank you so much for taking time to answer these nosey questions. Best wishes on the next book! Your fans are all anticipation.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lory Lilian is a Romanian who has been in love with Pride and Prejudice for more than four decades and became trapped in the Austenesque world in 2004 when she discovered Pride and Prejudice variations. She never managed to free herself from the trap — nor did she want to. After being an avid reader for several months, her growing passion for this new genre pushed

her to take a tentative step into writing.

Lory wrote her first book, Rainy Days, in 2004, and to this day, it remains one of the most read and loved Pride and Prejudice variations. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Lory’s career switched from the medical field to business, HR, and training, until 2018, when she decided to dedicate her entire time to writing Austenesque books. After Rainy Days, she published twenty more bestselling titles, her newest release being out April 2024. She has at least twenty more stories waiting to be finished and published. A proud mother of a fabulous daughter, Lory is also an animal lover; she likes the sea, the beach, and everything related to Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice.

Connect with Lory via Facebook, Amazon, and Instagram.




11 comentarios


I just love Lory's books. Glad to catch her interview.

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Supposedly, another is coming soon.

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What a lovely interview! I enjoyed getting to know Lory more these these questions and her answers. Congrats, Lory, on such a successful career as a writer. You've brought great joy to many!

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30 abr

I lived Pemberley through Lory and Joana Starnes’ eyes! I can’t wait to read Lory’s next book. — Ree

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Absolutely!

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Loved learning more about Lory.

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She has had a remarkable life!

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30 abr

Thank you for the lovely "chat", Christina! 😍 Lory here - I might appear as a guest.

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Thanks, Lory. I appreciate you taking time to answer all my nosey questions.

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