Why did my husband buy me this particular mug? It's a running joke between us. Every time I start a new book, I grumble about how the opening sentence has to be absolutely perfect. This is his cue for helpful suggestions such as: "It was a dark and stormy night. It was a stormy night and very dark. It was night and darkly stormy." Author-baiting? Not recommended! It's lucky I have a sense of humour or he'd find himself wearing the contents of said mug.
Sadly for Sir Edward, writing styles go in and out of fashion. In his day, long sentences and pages of text without a single paragraph break were fairly typical.
Despite his more recent incarnation as the poster boy for purple prose, Sir Edward was a hugely popular author in his time and friends with authors such as Charles Dickens. As well as novels, Sir Edward wrote plays and poems, and coined phrases such as 'the pen is mightier than the sword' and 'the great unwashed'. He was also an MP and a Secretary of State.
As an author myself, I think it's kind of cool that a line written nearly two hundred years ago is still quoted and appearing on mugs, T-shirts and the rest.
I wonder what Sir Edward would have thought?
(I expect he'd have liked the royalties!)
Five Books Which Chilled Me
If you'd like your own mug, it came from The Writers Workshoppe