The Tudor Society

About Claire Ridgway video

Thank you to those of you who left comments regarding what you want me to talk about in my Claire Chats videos, I really appreciate it. Somehow I managed to muddle up Kathryn and Margaret's comments, and it was actually Margaret who asked me to talk about myself. I'm so sorry, Kathryn and Margaret, I feel awful about mixing you two up but I hope that you enjoy this video.

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  1. M

    Love the video! It’s okay that there was a mixup on the name 🙂 I, too, loved watching The Tudors although the whole Mary/Margaret thing annoyed me. I was googling Anne Boleyn and that’s how I came across your site.My mother was crazy about English history. As a little girl, I think I knew the “Divorced, beheaded, died…” phrase before I knew my ABCs. She planted the seed, but she passed away before she could make a trip to the UK. It became #1 on my bucket list. So it’s interesting that you posted this video today as it’s the one year anniversary of my flight out of Houston for London. It was a coach tour of England Scotland Ireland and Wales, and not enough time was spent exploring just the Tudors. It was a great way to see the countryside and a great overview. We didn’t have much time around London at all, but I hit Windsor, Westminster Abbey and The Tower in a jetlagged haze. I’m already planning a return trip that will include time to go to Hever and Hampton Court and not be so rushed.
    I appreciate your hard work and dedication! Maybe some day we can have a gathering of the members of The Tudor Society. I know it would have to be planned well in advance since I’m unable to just hop a flight across The Pond.
    Now, how about those Tudor dolls you have? Where did you find them?

    1. C - Post Author

      Hi Margaret,
      Phew! Thank you for your understanding. I was so cross with myself afterwards.

      What other places did you visit on your coach tour and how long was it? Yes, definitely go back to the UK, and make sure you have plenty of time to do London and Kent properly as there’s so much to see.

      Thank you! It would be lovely to have a Tudor Society meet-up, I’d love it.

      The Tudor dolls are on my Claire Chats list so I will be doing a video on them, don’t worry.

  2. B

    I so enjoyed this, Claire! It was also quite timely. Just this morning, (I live in West Virginia, USA) my husband and I were discussing a book I’ve been reading, which is “The Queen’s Bed An Intimate History of Elizabeth’s Court” by Anna Whitelock, which I highly recommend, and he said, “Why can’t you write a history book on Elizabeth? You research constantly and you have the time.” I replied that I didn’t feel qualified, but even as I was saying that, I thought why don’t I try my hand at it? I don’t have a degree, but I do have a passion for Elizabeth I; I have a Pinterest board called ‘The Tudors and their Circle’ with over 700 followers, and I do know my subject, but I’m afraid that I can’t lay out a great book worthy of my topic. I’m 53 now and a grandmother, and I no longer work outside the home, so what am I waiting for?! This has so inspired me!! You are my hero! (I hate physics and math, too!) So, thank you for telling your story and allowing me to tell a bit of mine! 😃✨

    1. C - Post Author

      Hi Beth,
      There are so many times when I’ve said to myself “You can’t do that…. You’re not qualified…. You’re not a historian…” and such like, but another little voice inside me says “you can…”. Life is too short to waste it and you need to follow your dreams. I know just how you feel, and there will be people who look down their noses at you, but don’t let that kind of person stop you or be held back by your own fears. It’s been a very steep learning curve for me, but it’s been worth it. I’ve also found that although there are people who want to pull you down, there are also so many people out there wanting to build you up and support you.
      Tim’s going to do a video soon on publishing, so look out for that and thank you for suggesting it.
      Go for it! You’ve got the time, you’ve got the passion and just let me know if you need any help and advice, I’m always here xx

    2. M

      Beth, Listen to Claire: it sounds like you have all the passion necessary, so what are you waiting for? Word for Dummies is a great book for getting your way round Word if you need it and look at the way the books you like are laid out. The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. I flunked my maths physics & chemistry. I think they take a different type of brain. Claire & Tim have been a fantastic support to me, so what are you waiting for.

  3. B

    Claire and Melanie, thank you both for your encouragement and support! It means a great deal to me that two authors, and experts in the field of history, would be so kind in encouraging me to take that first step. I do have quite a lot of experience with Word, but I’m rusty since I left the office world 16 years ago to stay home with our children. I graduated from a private Christian school and was very adept at writing essays in theology and literature, but that has been a long time ago! I want to write about Elizabeth I, of course, as she has been the focus of my interest for so many years. I want to present something fresh, but I fear the only thing ‘fresh’ in topics on her would be my opinions, based on historical fact, naturally. I’m a very conversational person, and, as such, like to read books written in that style. I’ve waded through some very good history books for the material, but the enjoyment level wasn’t very high. I’m always trying to convince everyone I know that history is amazing and wonderful, but they look at me like I’m crazy!! But, that never stops me from trying!! My husband, Jeff, has been my biggest fan; the one I bounce ideas off of and discuss books I’m reading, etc. He bought me a huge bookcase for all my Tudor books and has attempted to add to my ‘Gunter Tudor Library’, but I have so many, he’s afraid of duplication! I’m fairly sure Amazon loves me and the postman hates me for all the heavy books I order! I apologize for the long post, but I feel quite excited at this point! So, instead of criticizing myself so harshly, I’m going to start my decision process on exactly what I’d like to say about Elizabeth, that’s readable and worthy of her incredibly interesting life. Thank you so much!
    *If anyone has ideas for topics, I’m very open to suggestions!

    1. C - Post Author

      Word is great, but so is Libreoffice, which is free too! When I’m writing I just make sure that I am consistent with headings – heading 1 for chapter titles and heading 2 for subtitles – and that I reference as I go. It’s so hard to reference afterwards as you forget where you got information and quotes etc. from. I use Zotero for referencing as it puts in references for you as footnotes or end notes and also automatically builds your bibliography from that – genius!

      You don’t necessarily need to reinvent the wheel. There are stacks of Tudor books out there, but there’s always rooms for more if you look at things from a different angle or use a different style. For example, Steven Gunn and Sarah Bryson have just brought out books on Charles Brandon but Gunn’s was based on his earlier one, which was based on his thesis, and so was very academic, and Sarah’s was in a more accessible and popular history style. My “Fall of Anne Boleyn Book” obviously focused on the same topic as Weir’s book but mine was different because it was in a diary format and I also had quite different views from Weir.

      You should be excited, you’ve made a decision and now you’re on an exciting journey. We’re here to help and if you want to try your hand at some articles first then just let me know!

  4. O

    Hi Beth. I would suggest starting a website at first if you don’t want to launch headlong into a book. It’s a great way to build an audience, sharpen your writing skills and learn what topics are popular. And even if you want to start a book now, start a website anyway, that way you can start building on your work.
    Claire is a very inspirational lady. In 2011 I read a couple of Tudor history books, then found the Anne Boleyn Files and started frequenting the forums. Since then I have started my own website, write for the magazine here, and have gone back to university to major in history.

    We’re always around the forums if you want a chat too.

    1. C - Post Author

      Yes, I agree with Olga, blogging is great practice and would help you to find potential readers too.

      Thank you for the kind words, Olga, you’re an inspiration too, you work so hard and you’re such a support and encouragement to me and to the Tudor Society.

      1. O

        It’s my pleasure Claire 🙂

  5. S

    Thank you, Claire, for such an enjoyable chat about “A Day in the Life of…” All the lovely sunshine and I think I heard the sounds of the sea here and there and that made me envious! However, your knowledge astounds me and it’s wonderful that you share it in so many ways. Not being British I haven’t had the immersion in English history that those from the U.K had in school, but I’m learning so much from The Tudor Society, The Anne Boleyn Files, and reading like crazy. I’m really enjoying and learning so much from the course “Richard III and the Wars of the Roses.” I’m watching the trial from the 1984 TV broadcast of the “mock” trial in lesson 8. Speaking of Richard III and the princes, why do you think that DNA testing on the bones isn’t allowed today? Now I’m not so sure about Richard III! I’ve been an American Civil War buff since about sixth grade, so I’ve changed wars for a while. I found it funny this afternoon when I went to a doctor’s appointment and I was rattling on about the Tudor Society and The Anne Boleyn Files and these wonderful people who are in charge of them, and my doctor said, “What are the Tudors?” He’s from Pakistan so he’s off the hook!

    1. C - Post Author

      Hi Sandra,

      There’s always quite a buzz in the village if I do my videos on a Friday morning as it’s market day and during last week’s one I had to keep stopping as there was a van going round selling melons and announcing itself with a loud speaker! We’re in the mountains so no sea sounds in the background I’m afraid, just dogs panting!

      Re the bones in the urn in Westminster Abbey, I think it’s simply a case of just wanting them left in peace and not wanting to disturb or desecrate their resting place.

      I’m glad you’re enjoying the course, Toni did a brilliant job.

  6. B

    Claire, thank you for the pointers on writing programs. Citing sources has been something that I thought would be the most daunting!! My goodness, I’ve recently read several books that have probably 30-40 pages of sources!! Instead of charging straight into my book project, I thought I might possibly compose an article for submission to my favorite magazine…our very own Tudor Life magazine! I had a short essay on Elizabeth’s progresses in another Tudor forum that was internet published. I guess I should email you for further advice, but permit me a question here…as I’m sure you know, American English and British English are not the same. I read so much text in British English, that I misspell words here! I want to add ‘u’ to favorite and honor, and use ‘s’ instead of ‘z’. Will writing in AE be received as well as BE?
    Olga, that’s very good advice! I’ve read your work and enjoy it. I, too, found the Anne Boleyn Files and my obsession really took hold of my reading preferences. I own 35 books on the Tudors and countless e-books. While I don’t plan to attend college, I have taken online classes at the University of Exeter and looked into some classes at Cambridge. ‘Where there’s a will; there’s a way’!! 🙋🏼

    1. C - Post Author

      That’s ok, Beth, I’m happy to help.

      A magazine article would be a great project to start with and we’d be happy to put it in the magazine for you – thank you. Regarding American English and British English, it really doesn’t matter for the magazine. I know with MadeGlobal Publishing Tim has a British copy-editor and because it’s a European company everything is edited and corrected to British English to be consistent. Regarding reception, I don’t think people mind as long as you are consistent.

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About Claire Ridgway video