I would suggest the novels to friends and family from time to time, but found it very hard to describe them. It went something like: Historical/Romantic/Sci-Fi/Military-Fiction. Um...yeah. Even Gabaldon herself will tell you they're hard to pin down as a genre, but that's what is so amazing about them. They have something for everyone. And hey Doctor Who fans...the entire series was born from an idea that was sparked while Gabaldon was watching an episode where the Doctor picks up a young Highlander named Jamie. According to Gabaldon via Outlander TV News:
The Doctor Who connection:
Well on this really old show that had to have been filmed 55 years ago at least, he picked up a young Scotsman from 1745. This was an 18, 19 year old young man who appeared in his kilt. I said oh that’s kind of fetching.
I found myself still thinking about this the next day and said well it doesn’t really matter where you set this book, why not? I said, fine, Scotland 18th century. So that’s where I began, knowing nothing about Scotland or the 18th century.
I had no plot, no outline and no characters, nothing but the rather vague images conjured up by the notion of a man in a kilt which is of course a very powerful and compelling image. So that’s where I began, the man in the kilt. I didn’t know who he was. I didn’t know anything about the history of Scotland so I wasn’t sure what clan he should belong to or what his family name was. I began with him. He did have a name.
The part played by the young man in the Doctor Who episode, that young Scotsman was named Jamie McCrimmon and so I called my main character Jamie as a sort of compliment to the original. Other than that there really was no connection between them, the name and the kilt. So he was just Jamie. He was Jamie blank for a while.
Over the years there have been rumors of movies, mini-series and there was actually a musical that was performed at a festival in Edinburgh in 2009. So when news came that Starz and Ron D. Moore (of Battlestar Galactica fame) were going to bring it to the small screen I didn't really take much stock in it. But this time it proved to be true!
THE OBSESSENACH ADVENTURE BEGINS!
So I started to anxiously search the web for any news of casting, when it would be released, would the author have a say in anything, etc. There were some highs and lows during all that and then in January 2014 I was able to attend a fan event here in Los Angeles:
Keep in mind the show had just begun filming the previous month, so this was really a super early introduction. But fans were lined up around blocks (yes plural) to get in and see Ron D. Moore, Diana Gabaldon and the two principle actors Caitriona Balfe (Claire Randall) and Sam Heughan (Jamie Fraser). Inside we got our first glimpses of scenes from the show and this one in particular got quite a few photos taken with it:
The entire time was spent listening to the panel tell us about their vision for the show, how they cast, how they decided on wardrobe, how they were adapting these wonderful books for television, etc. In short, I went from trepidation to whole hearted acceptance and became a complete and utter Obsessenach!
My friend and I even did the hang out backstage thing to get a chance to meet the principles - or in my case the author. Herself proved elusive, but I did get Caitriona and Sam to sign a promo poster:
Oh #PocketJamie. I did not know what I was missing in my life until you came into it.
THE MINI ADVENTURES OF #POCKETJAMIE
We've had many adventures together these last few months. I've taken him to:
The Jane Austen Evening
Gotten a little goofy at times...
Introduced him to my #1 Literary love Sherlock Holmes at a Sherlock Fandom Tea:
An amusement park...where he was not amused...
A popular musical
A museum where he wanted a picture with this painting of George Washington. If you've read the books you'll know why he found this portrait amusing and the entire U.S. History wing...
The L.A. Festival of Books. #PocketJamie is an educated man and does enjoy reading.
a Color Run (I mean we make this look gooooood)
and an "Art of the Tardis" craft fair b/c I had to bring it full circle as much as possible...right?!?! (Also note this is the same day the first episode aired in the U.S.)
Just to name a few.
FINALLY MEETING HERSELF!
But what we really wanted was to meet Herself. And low and behold in May, we did!
She not only signed my book...she signed #PocketJamie!
Then a month later I got to attend another signing for her new release:
but my pic with Herself at this one was not so great...however #PocketJaime made some new friends:
In fact, I've tweeted so much about our adventures and my growing obsession that I've been on the official "Outlander Community" board:
Then came Comic Con 2014 and obsession went into full-blown meltdown!
COMIC CON 2014 OUTLANDER MADNESS!
I expected Starz to have something there and knew there would be a panel, but low and behold...they had "The Booth":
My friends and I may have visited it a few dozen times and got to know the people working the booth so well that they were gracious enough to let us snap this picture 10 minutes before the Con closed:
On Friday, which I dubbed "Outlander Day SDCC" there was a signing at the booth:
But the real highlight was that they premiered the first episode during Comic Con!!!
where #PocketJamie got to meet #GiantJamie
I got to stand on the "Tartan Carpet" and take pictures of the actors as they arrived:
Then there was the moment where I unexpectedly ran into Claire and Jamie...I mean Caitriona and Sam...
Then I got to attend another premier screening in L.A.
And then came the anxious waiting for it to actually air and to see how it would be received:
But did I need to be afeared? Of course not! Because Starz did something ingenious and let people watch the first episode for free a week before it officially aired. Which, according to stats I gathered, garnered at least 900,000 views from different online sources it was released to.
In fact it did so well in the first two episodes it's already been picked up for Season 2! DRAGONFLY IN AMBER IS A GO!!!!! And Episode 3 just aired this past weekend.
We are "Outlander" fans here us roar!
So there we are...a wee bit about my year of Outlander outlandishness and descent into fandom madness. And it's not nearly over yet. Wanna follow more of my crazy check out my twitter where I'm live tweeting each episode and other shenanigans as @NovelStrumpet
So now I close this post with some of the Outlander fan art I've found round deviantART:
by Kath - 13
So how about you? Are any of you Obsessenachs? Did you read the books? Watch the show? Both? Have any "Outlander" tales to tell?