Sarah James On Dating A British Aristocrat
a character article by Megan Mulry
Hi, I'm Sarah James! Thanks so much for having me over to Talk Supe. I have to admit it's pretty ironic that I'm offering dating advice since Devon Heyworth is really the only person I've ever dated. And he's a bit of a freak. I mean, he's not a freak for dating me, he's a freak for, well, never mind. Come to think of it, I guess I sort of went out with Eliot Cranbrook a couple of times...but that was after Devon and I...floundered. But even then, as soon as it was looking like Eliot might have actual feelings for me, I put the kibosh on that whole thing. Other than getting him to run interference with Devon, which sort of helped us get back together in the end. But I would definitely not recommend doing that! (So that would be a "Don't"!) Devon looked like he might have torn Eliot's head off if I hadn't been there to stop it. Which, I hate to confess, was so damned sexy we ended up in the coat closet shortly thereafter.
Wait! What was I supposed to be talking about? Oh, advice for dating aristos. Um. Yeah. Here's the thing: despite my glam public persona, I'm pretty much of an egalitarian at heart. My mom was raised by a really snooty (fabulous, chic, gorgeous, but horribly snobbish) woman. My grandmother is incredibly wonderful, but I think my mother knew that there was something not-quite-right about judging people based on, well, their "people." So that is in me, somewhere deep. I mean, don't get me wrong! I love beautiful things and clever conversation—but I think you're just as likely to find gems in a Mayfair ballroom as you are in a muddy oyster bed.
So. (Did I mention I tend to get distracted?) I guess that oyster bit would probably be my main "Do" advice. Whether you are dating some guy you met at a second-hand bookstore or the second son of a duke, just be yourself. If you pretend you know a baronet from a Chrysler Le Baron you're just going to get found out, anyway. (I still can't remember if I'm supposed to introduce my sister-in-law as the Marchioness of Wick, or Lady, or Marchioness, or what! It just doesn't resonate!)
Best to own your ignorance and stick with your strengths. My friend Bronte is a particularly good example of this. She rubs some people the wrong way (like our mother-in-law), but the bottom line is you always know where you stand with Bronte. And that's why the duke fell in love with her (after meeting her in that bookstore).
But that's another story.
Hope that helps!
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I write sexy, stylish, romantic fiction. I graduated from Northwestern University and then worked in publishing, including positions at the New Yorker and Boston magazine. After moving to London, I worked in finance and attended London Business School. I've traveled extensively in Asia, India, Europe, and Africa and now live with my husband and children in Florida. You can find me procrastinating on Twitter.
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