Tell me a little about yourself (where you live, who you are, what you look like, what you hope to achieve, etc.)
I am Robert Townley, valet to the Duke of Bartlett. I suppose I can be described as rather tall, and well-groomed.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
What is spare time? I have my duties to the duke, and I pride myself in always being available when he needs me. I am allowed a half day off each week. Occasionally I will have a few hours to myself if the Duke is in Parliament or attending a social function with the duchess. Sometimes when that happens I go to Bond Street and visit Jackson’s Saloon for a round of boxing. It’s the best way to work off my frustrations and clear my head.
What is your favorite color and why?
Favorite color? I’ve never thought about it. Color is simply something by which I’m able to discern one thing from another. Or one person from another. Like sparkling blue eyes that darken when she’s angry, and soften when she’s speaking to one of the children in the chapel school…
What is your favorite food? Why is it your favorite?
Again, I’ve never thought about it. I eat the food is served in the servant’s quarters, and it’s the only food I’ve ever known, as my father served the previous duke. I eat what is served, and I’ve never been asked whether I’d want something else.
What would you say is your biggest quirk?
Jeanne, er, Miss Brown tells me that I am much too concerned with a person’s station. She says that my discomfort is quite evident when I’m near people who are less fortunate than I.
What is it about your antagonist that irks you the most, and why? Share a line in the book where this irk is manifested.
Antagonist? I guess that would be poverty. I’ve never experienced it personally, but I’ve seen what it does to the people in Cheapside. The people whose children Jeanne and I teach in the evenings. Poverty is what prevents these people from being able to dress and groom themselves, from knowing how to properly conduct themselves in social situations, and from adequately providing for their children.
“Please, Miss Brown. Could I take some of the leftover food for me mum? She hasn’t had anything to eat for days.”
“Of course, Andy. Let me wrap some for you. Is — is your father still at your home?”
The boy’s face darkened. “He’s there, but he — he doesn’t talk to us. Unless he’s yelling. And if he’s yelling, we get out of the way.”
What or who means the most to you in your life? What, if anything, would you do to keep him/her/it in your life?
Propriety. There is a proper way to behave in all situations. I can’t abide loud, boorish displays of emotion. Why can’t all people conduct themselves in a civilized manner?
What one thing would you like readers to know about you that may not be spelled out in the book in which you inhabit?
Despite what Jeanne thinks, I have a heart.
If you could tell your writer (creator) anything about yourself that might turn the direction of the plot, what would it be?
I am quite uncomfortable outside of my own world. But I suppose it is good that you took me outside my realm of comfort.
Ask me any question. I've always wanted to know what a character thinks about writers like myself. I'll answer the question at the end of this interview.
Do you always ask such probing questions? As a gentleman, I would never presume to ask such things!
I have been an author for many years, and a journalist before that, so yes, I've learned to ask probing questions. How best to get to know a character like yourself? Discover what lurks behind the heart?
Thanks for answering them.
Patricia Kiyono can be found at her website, personal blog, group blog, Amazon, Goodreads, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.