The Darcy Brothers began as a project among several adventurous and brave writers who went out on a limb and engaged in a huge experiment, a round-robin, reader’s choice story called The premise was simple:‘what if Fitzwilliam Darcy (of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice) had a younger brother…’.
The project required the authors to create new chapters in less than a week using the votes of the readers to determine the course of the story. Not a few grey hairs were developed in the process. While the group had a basic idea of where the story was going, and a general outline to assist along the way, occasional sleepless nights ensued when the readers voted one direction for the story and the authors preferred another.
The writers brainstormed the plot elements at various points along the way, making for one the most exciting parts of the process. The process began in email with one offering an idea or a question, then the responses start flying fast and fierce. Since authors usually don’t get that much feedback during the developmental phases of their work, learning to work with abundance of it was both a treat and a challenge as they negotiated how to work in competing ideas and visions.
Posting the story as it evolved left the authors biting their nail, but reader engagement was phenomenal–so encouraging and engaged in the story. Their energy was contagious and carried the authors through weary moments and inspired them to write something far more ambitious than we had dreamed of. The Darcy Brothers would not be what it is without their input.