Yearly Archives: 2007

Of Gently Refusing Gifts, and of Reality TV

Oh goodness, Snarklings. The Lady of the Manners knew exactly what she was going to write about; a letter from someone in the vampire subculture, and the long-threatened holding-forth about the sparkly skull accessory trend. But then things got busy (as they do), and then one of you wrote in with a question about a delicate situation concerning holiday gifts. The Lady of the Manners realized she absolutely needed to try and help, which brings us to this: Continue reading

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Of Treating People Civilly, of Labels, and of White Foundation

Oh Snarklings, the Lady of the Manners didn’t mean to take such a long break. Alas, these things do happen. But the Lady of the Manners is not going to dwell upon that, and instead dive right into answering two different letters from readers. One letter with two separate questions, even!

The first letter, from a Miss Lolita, is about labeling oneself, and whether or not one should be polite to people who’ve done nothing to deserve such treatment: Continue reading

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Of Parents Worrying About “Drama”

No, Snarklings, the Lady of the Manners did not mean to go this long before posting a new lesson. But, as many of you probably know, October is a very busy month for those of a Gothy nature, and time just seemed to slip through the Lady of the Manners’ lace-gloved fingers. But never fear (or do if it makes you happy), for the Lady of the Manners has returned, and with advice for the black-clad parents among Gothic Charm School’s readers. A “Worried mother” wrote in with a serious dilemma: Continue reading

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Of Elegant Gothic Lolita, Deathrock, and Victorian Fashion

Apparently some of you Snarklings have figured out that the Lady of the Manners loves loves loves to blither on about clothes and the aesthetics of Goth fashion. Why does the Lady of the Manners say this? Because several of you have sent fashion-related questions to Gothic Charm School. And not just those of the ”Am I still a Goth if I don’t wear all black?!” type questions either, thank goodness.

(The Lady of the Manners would like to reassure the readers who aren’t terribly fascinated with clothing that no, Gothic Charm School isn’t going to turn into an all-fashion all-the-time site. Really. The Lady of the Manners solemnly promises this.) Continue reading

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New Designs at the Gothic Charm School Store!

Merchandise, Snarklings! There are 14 designs to choose from, including stunning new bat designs, the classic Gothic Charm School crest, the ever-popular Friends don’t let friends dress like The Crow motto, and Snarkling. At long last! Black Gothic Charm School apparel for ladies, gentlemen, and babybats.

Buy your Gothic Charm School goodies here!

Coming Soon: the Housewares section, home to mugs, mousepads, buttons, and stickers!
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Of Book Reviews Concerning Gothic Fantasy, and of Disapproving Parents

Hello Snarklings! The Lady of the Manners apologizes for not posting anything for a bit, but would like to make it up to you all with a book review and replies to a reader letter.

(“Waitaminute”, the perceptive among you might be thinking, “At the end of the last lesson, she said she was going to review a book, and answer reader mail! How is this making it up to all of us?” You would be absolutely correct. But the Lady of the Manners isn’t able to bring all of you cupcakes or bat cookies, and so begs you to accept her heartfelt apologies.)

So, book reviews! The charming people at Immanion Press sent the Lady of the Manners a copy of Tourniquet: Tales from the Renegade City, by Kim Lakin-Smith. The Lady of the Manners is very thankful that they did, because it is a marvelous book. A dark urban fantasy, it imagines a world where a wildly successful Gothic Rock band called Origin devotes themselves to creating a Mecca for those of a dark and flamboyant temperament. An entire city populated by various stripes of subcultures, all held together by the magic of Belief and consensual reality. Oh yes, Snarklings; the denizens of Renegade City have recreated themselves into their dreams and nightmares, and divided into tribes. But Roses, the lead singer of Origin, is dead. Signs of turmoil and decay are creeping around the edges of the tribes, and Druid, Roses’ brother, finally drags himself out of his self-imposed reclusive ways to try and find some answers.

Now, the Lady of the Manners feels she must state very clearly that Tourniquet: Tales from the Renegade City may not be to every-one’s tastes. The writing is lush and overblown, if not verging on lurid and over the top in some sections. If you are a reader that does not want to wallow in descriptive and purple prose, the Lady of the Manners regretfully must tell you that this is not a book you would enjoy. However, if, like the Lady of the Manners, you are a fan of authors such as Tanith Lee, Storm Constantine, and Ray Bradbury, then Tourniquet is for you. Continue reading

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The Lady of the Manners on Internet Radio!

The Lady of the Manners will be a guest on The Eclectic Word together with Allyson Beatrice (author of Will the Vampire People Please Leave the Lobby) on Friday, Sept. 7th at 7 p.m. EST/4 p.m. PST.

Poet and journalist Victor D. Infante hosts The Eclectic Word, an Internet radio show that delves into literature’s fringe with poets, satirists, alternative journalists and even (gasp!) bloggers, stepping off the beaten path of literature, taking a close look at the odd, the eccentric and the cutting-edge.
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Of Reader Mail Concerning Mourning, the Military, and Teachers

Reader mail, Snarklings! Yes, it’s time for another lesson full of questions taken from the Gothic Charm School mailbox. The Lady of the Manners wishes she was able to reply to each and every letter you delightful Snarklings send, but pesky realities such as sleeping and going to work seem to take up more time then they should. But, dear Snarklings, the Lady of the Manners is going to have more lessons that will feature reader mail, with only occasional breaks for book reviews and topics the Lady of the Manners wants to rant hold forth about.

The first reader letter is from a young man calling himself Lost Recruit:

I have a slight dilemma. You see, I have fallen under the…title, for lack of another way too put it, of Goth. But my future career could strip me of the ‘title’ I’ve actually come to accept. You see I’ve enlisted into our United States Marine Corps just this July. I am worried about losing the spirit that has earned me such a unique view from my peers. Any advice Ma’am? I would’ve looked through the archives but couldn’t find anything that looked like it would work.
Thank you much.

Firstly, the Lady of the Manners would like to congratulate you on your enlistment, and hopes that your military career is both fulfilling and safe. As to being worried about having to forsake your gothy nature upon joining the military: at first glance, a life of military service does seem incompatible with such a thing. But the Lady of the Manners wants to reassure you that your joining the military DOES NOT mean you will have to turn your back on the Goth subculture which you call your home. The Lady of the Manners knows many Goths who have been in the military, and none of them lost their dark spirit and unique views. However, be aware that your different outlook on things will most likely earn you attention and comments from your fellow service people. Be prepared for sarcastic questions and sometimes even outright hostility, and try not to respond in kind. Be polite and matter-of-fact about who you are, and please don’t feel that you have to change your personality or views to fit in or to succeed, because that isn’t the case at all. Again, the best of luck to you!

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Of Reader Mail Concerning Religion, the Sun, Scars, and Fashion

Hello Snarklings! Things have been very exciting around Gothic Charm School of late, what with the Yahoo Picks Profile and the floods of email that it generated. The Lady of the Manners had several different topics she was all set to hold forth upon, but decided that an assortment of answers to reader mail would be much more entertaining. Continue reading

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Gothic Charm School is featured at Yahoo Picks

“Long before we first reviewed her site in 2003, she’d been dispensing acclaimed etiquette advice to velvet-clad denizens of the night. Recently, we left our calling card at her door and were soon welcomed into Jilli’s virtual parlor to chat … Continue reading

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