Heyer has arrived!

Picture of the "Georgette Heyer, History and Historical Fiction" book in a box of old Heyers novels.

Look what’s arrived! My contributor edition of Georgette Heyer, History and Historical Fiction, with chapters on everything from linguistics to war — including mine on “Heyer . . . in Space! The Influence of Georgette Heyer on Science Fiction.”

The book, edited by Samantha J. Rayner and Kim Wilkins, is available from UCL Press, and although the print version is very reasonably priced for an academic publication, the ebook version is free!

And while it is an academic book, and sprang from an academic conference, the delight of all the authors in their subject has been delightful. For the Un-Conference launch, we even had such fans of Heyer as Stephen Fry, Philippa Gregory, Lois McMaster Bujold and Jennifer Kloester involved!

Georgette Heyer Un-Conference Thursday 25 Feb

Look what’s happening this Thursday 25 February (UK time)! It’s the launch of Georgette Heyer, History, and Historical Fiction, and features an astonishing lineup of live and pre-recorded events, including Lois McMaster Bujold and Stephen Fry (!!!).

You can sign up here: Georgette Heyer: An Un-Conference – 25 February 2021

The book is from UCL Press and is very reasonably priced for an academic book (including free digital access).

And here’s the table of contents:

  • Introduction: the Persistence of Georgette Heyer
    Samantha Rayner and Kim Wilkins
  • Part 1: Gender
    • 1. ‘Where History says little, Fiction may say much’ (Anna Barbauld): the historical novel in women’s hands in the mid-twentieth century
      Kathryn Sutherland
    • 2. The not so silly ass: Freddy Standen, his fictional contemporaries and alternative masculinity
      Geraldine Perriam
    • 3. Judith Taverner as dandy-in-training in Georgette Heyer’s Regency Buck
      Laura George
  • Part 2: Genre
    • 4. Pride and prejudice: metafiction and the value of historical romance in Georgette Heyer
      Kim Sherwood
    • 5. Loving and giving: realism, emotional hypocrisy, and generosity in A Civil Contract
      Jennifer Clement
    • 6. Georgette Heyer and redefining the Gothic romance
      Holly Hirst
    • 7. Heyer . . . in Space! The Influence of Georgette Heyer on science fiction
      Kathleen Jennings
  • Part 3: Sources
    • 8. All’s Well That Ends Well: Shakespearean Echoes in Heyer’s Regency novels
      Lisa Hopkins
    • 9. Georgette Heyer, Wellington’s Army and the First World War
      Vanda Wilcox
    • 10. Georgette Heyer and the language of the historical novel
      Tom Zille
  • Part 4: Circulation and Reception
    • 11. A reluctant movie? The Reluctant Widow on screen
      Lucie Bea Dutton
    • 12. Georgette Heyer – guilty pleasures
      Amy Street
    • 13. Data science: Georgette Heyer’s historical novels and her readers
      Helen Davidge

Georgette Heyer, History, and Historical Fiction

Samantha Rayner and Kim Wilkins have edited a book of papers originally presented at the Nonesuch conference at University College of London in 2018. Now Georgette Heyer, History, and Historical Fiction is coming out from UCL in February 2021. And I have written an actual academic chapter! My paper is “Heyer… in Space! The Influence of Georgette Heyer on Science Fiction”.

Here’s the table of contents (all the papers I saw presented were fascinating):

  • Introduction: The Persistence of Georgette Heyer Samantha Rayner and Kim Wilkins
  • Part 1: Gender
    • 1. ‘Where History says little, Fiction may say much’ (Anna Barbauld): the historical novel in women’s hands in the mid-twentieth century Kathryn Sutherland
    • 2. The Not-So-Silly-Ass: Freddy Standen, his Fictional Contemporaries and Alternative Masculinity Geraldine Perriam
    • 3. Judith Taverner as dandy-in-training in Georgette Heyer’s Regency Buck, Laura George
  • Part 2: Genre
    • 4. Pride and Prejudice: Metafiction and the Value of Historical Romance in Georgette Heyer Kim Sherwood
    • 5. Loving and Giving: Realism, Emotional Hypocrisy, and Generosity in A Civil ContractJennifer Clement
    • 6. Georgette Heyer and Redefining the Gothic Romance Holly Hirst
    • 7. Heyer . . . in Space! The Influence of Georgette Heyer on Science Fiction Kathleen Jennings
  • Part 3: Sources
    • 8. All’s Well That Ends Well: Shakespearean Echoes in Heyer’s Regency Novels Lisa Hopkins
    • 9. Georgette Heyer, Wellington’s Army and the First World War Vanda Wilcox
    • 10. Georgette Heyer and the Language of the Historical Novel Tom Zille
  • Part 4: Circulation and Reception
    • 11. A Reluctant Movie? The Reluctant Widow on Screen Lucie Bea Dutton
    • 12. Georgette Heyer – Guilty Pleasures Amy Street
    • 13. Data Science: Georgette Heyer’s Historical Novels and Her Readers  Helen Davidge

Doors in worlds

An very old illustration, making a reappearance here on my slide for a three-minute presentation about the PhD I began this year(!)

Old as it is, and from an era of somewhat attenuated figures and trees, I’m still very fond of this picture — it’s connected, too, to the creative component of the research project.

And last year Angela Slatter gave me this beautiful notebook cover made by her father.

Howl’s Moving Contracts

Electronic-Howl-low-res

Last year I went to the Diana Wynne Jones: Bristol 2019 conference in, obviously, Bristol, and had a wonderful time. Fannish academic conventions(? academic-ish fan conventions?) are wonderful fun, and we made new friends whose tastes we already approved of, and after the convention was over several of us tramped all over, and danced the witchy dance at Clifton Suspension Bridge, and rode a carousel, and tried to find the 21st-century equivalent of Janine’s boutique (some of these references are to Deep Secret which had a formative effect on my career).

Also, although I was between degrees, I gave a paper on:

“Contracts and Calcifer, or “In Which A Contract Is Concluded Before Witnesses”: the Transactional Structure of Howl’s Moving Castle.”

No regrets were had.

And the conference ebook is now available, for £10 : The Proceedings of the Diana Wynne Jones Conference, Bristol 2019.

Table of Contents

  • Diana Wynne Jones Conference E-book – Introduction
  • 1. Everything I learned about running a convention I learned from Deep Secret
  • The Pleasures and Challenges (Expected and Unexpected) of Teaching Diana Wynne Jones in the College Classroom 
  • 2. Teaching Fire and Hemlock and Charmed Life
  • 3. “Not One Hobbit Have I Seen!”: Generic Conventions and Teaching Diana Wynne Jones’ Work
  • 4. Teaching Howl’s Moving Castle
  • 5. Diana Wynne Jones’ Stories for Young Readers: “How Do Young Readers Like Them?”
  • Families and How to Survive Them
  • 6. The Tough Guide to Growing Up: Diana Wynne Jones’ Lessons on Coming of Age
  • 7. Family in the Works of Diana Wynne Jones
  • 8. Step-parents in The Ogre Downstairs and Howl’s Moving Castle
  • 9. Diana Wynne Jones and Cats
  • Wiles and Wisdom
  • 10. Mini, Millie, Magid: Unconventional Women in the Works of Diana Wynne Jones
  • 11. “Drowning in Bleach”: Guilt and Shame in Diana Wynne Jones
  • Under the Influence
  • 12. What Did They Teach Her in Those Schools? Or “Damn It! I’m Turning into C.S. Lewis”: Diana Wynne Jones and C.S. Lewis
  • 13. Where She Got It From: Diana Wynne Jones, Other Towns, and Piers Plowman
  • 14. Invisible and Visible Influence: Diana Wynne Jones, E. Nesbit, and Children Who Are Not Seen
  • 15. Keynote: Living a Charmed Life
  • Concealment and Revelation
  • 16. “Do We Know Each Other?”: Hidden Identities, Referential Characters, and Narrative Possibilities in Diana Wynne Jones’ Hexwood
  • 17. Concealment and Revelation: Reading Diana Wynne Jones’ Magic through Western Esoteric Traditions
  • 18. Buried Alive: The Arthur/Merlin Motif in the Novels of Diana Wynne Jones
  • Built Environments
  • 19. Contracts and Calcifer, or “In Which A Contract Is Concluded Before Witnesses”: the Transactional Structure of Howl’s Moving Castle
  • 20. Jones and Quantum Foam
  • 21. Making Sense of Settings: How Sensory Description Builds Dalemark
  • 22. Diana Wynne Jones’ Contemporary Medievalism
  • Into the Woods
  • 23. Ideologies of Power in Hexwood
  • 24. Fractured Humanity/Fragments of Humanity in Hexwood
  • 25. Time in Diana Wynne Jones
  • 26. There’s Nothing Magic About Words: Translating Diana Wynne Jones into Hebrew
  • Wizarding Worlds
  • 27. “So Would You Mind Telling Me Where I Am? It’s a Stately Home of Some Kind, Isn’t It?” (Charmed Life)
  • 28. Walled Gardens, Lonely Attics and Public Schools: the Romance, the Canon and Constructions of Englishness in the Chrestomanci Series
  • 29. It Takes a Wizard: Exploring the Role of Wizards within their Communities in Howl’s Moving Castle, Frogkisser! and The Evil Wizard Smallbone
  • 30. The Wizard of a Thousand Faces: Pinning Down the Trickster Wizard in The Howl Trilogy
  • Power and the Corporations
  • 31. A Remedy, or, the Meaning of the Goon’s Small Head
  • 32. “Want Television!”: the “Drama of Screens” in Archer’s Goon (BBC, 1992)
  • 33. “We Need to Make the Place Pay Somehow”: Magical Universities and Money in Year of the Griffin
  • Nationality and Borders
  • 34. Deconstructing Dalemark: an Alternate History of Northern Europe
  • 35. Bounds, Homes and Riding away: An Exploration of Border Representation and National Identity within the Novels of Diana Wynne Jones
  • 36. In Short, the Map is Useless: Cartography and Maps in Diana Wynne Jones’ Books and Stories
  • 37. Diana: My Sister’s Imagination
  • Primary Bibliography: Works by Diana Wynne Jones
  • The Contributors
  • Kickstarter supporters
  • Index of Chapters Discussing Jones’ Books
  • Poems, by Diana Wynne Jones.