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Heyer in General > Georgette Heyer Conference in Sydney.....

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message 1: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (last edited Jul 27, 2016 02:05PM) (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
... on the 7th of August.

I can't believe it's nearly time!

Is anyone else going? I'm sure we will be given name tags, but otherwise I'll be the one with the large light brown faux Jimmy Choo bag. & I'm pretty sure I'll be the only one with a Canadian/New Zealand accent!

& does anyone have any questions for Jen Koestler?


message 2: by Lesley (new)

Lesley | 265 comments Enjoy yourself! I'm sure you will think of lots to ask Jen and provide a full report on your return. ☺


message 3: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Ella's Gran wrote: "Enjoy yourself! I'm sure you will think of lots to ask Jen and provide a full report on your return. ☺"

Thanks. I'm really excited. First time in any part of Australia - although my daughter is (hopefully temporarily) moving to Brisbane next year. So I will be back there.


message 4: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Cellier | 34 comments This sounds like a lot of fun! One of the ladies in my writer's group put out an invitation offering to give any of us a lift up (we live in Canberra which is about 3 hours drive from Sydney) but I can't seem to find a website or information about it online. Does anyone know if there are still tickets left?


message 5: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Melanie wrote: "This sounds like a lot of fun! One of the ladies in my writer's group put out an invitation offering to give any of us a lift up (we live in Canberra which is about 3 hours drive from Sydney) but I..."

Hi Melanie

this is the thread where Amanda first made contact. Her email address is in Message 9. I heard from her today & there were still some places.

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

There is no website.


message 6: by Lori (new)

Lori | 13 comments That sounds wonderful and I hope you have loads of fun! I will be with you in spirit!!


message 7: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments Can't wait to hear how it goes, Carol! (and anyone else who gets to go)


message 8: by Seema (new)

Seema Khan (seemakhan) | 19 comments This sounds like so much fun! keep us posted! :)


message 9: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1776 comments You lucky lucky thing!!!!!


message 10: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
How is it going?


message 11: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Hi I had a wonderful time at the conference. Now at Katoomba in the Blue Mountains. will be home very late next Monday will hopefully be back on deck Tuesday


message 12: by Karlyne (new)

Karlyne Landrum | 3895 comments Carol ♔ Type, Oh Queen! ♔ wrote: "Hi I had a wonderful time at the conference. Now at Katoomba in the Blue Mountains. will be home very late next Monday will hopefully be back on deck Tuesday"

Enjoy every single moment!


message 13: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Karlyne wrote: "
Enjoy..."


I did! I'm back but feeling a little washed out - only had one really good night's sleep while away (although I did have a good night's sleep at my daughter's last night as well)

I'll report in tomorrow or Thursday though! :)


message 14: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
Rest up and tell us all about it, I can't wait!


message 15: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
I'm ready to tell!

The conference was on the other side of sydney from where I was staying, but Sydney's excellent public transport system made it easy to get there.

The Epping Club was very elegant - very appropriate for a Heyer Conference. We were welcomed with coffee & scones - great for me as I hadn't had breakfast. I'm guessing there were around 150 attendees. Most were middle aged or older & I only saw 2 men.

After the introductions, Jenn Kloester showed a video of the blue plaque dedication at Wimbledon. Jenn Kloester first suggested nominating GH to her son Sir Richard Rougier around 2004. Sir Richard demurred at first, thinking his mother would have hated it, but an old girlfriend of his was there as well & she persuaded him, that deep down, his mother would have loved it.

The plaque was unveiled in 2015 - it took so long because there are a large number of worthy nominees & only around 12 plaques a year are issued. So, a very great honour.

http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/ab...


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 1136 comments Carol,

Did you meet or hear of any attendees from US or Canada?

I'm curious to know if anyone from my part of the world attend attended the conference.


message 17: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Andrea (Catsos Person) is a Compulsive eBook Hoarder wrote: "Carol,

Did you meet or hear of any attendees from US or Canada?

I'm curious to know if anyone from my part of the world attend attended the conference."


No I didn't sorry. There were attendees from England apparently, but I didn't meet them. The speakers were all Australian/Australian residents except for Ruth Williamson, a librarian/scholar from New Zealand.

They hope to have another conference in four years time. Sydney is an amazing city,so it would be well worth building a holiday around the conference.

I'll write more tomorrow. :)


message 18: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (last edited Aug 18, 2016 08:46PM) (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
& I didn't get back to it - sorry! A few urgent personal matters to attend to yesterday.

They had quite a few speakers - my favourites were well known authors Anne Gracie & Alison Goodman & organiser Amanda (who really spoke from the heart) Amanda also gave us, the Facebook group & Almacks a plug. :)

I found Alison Goodman's talk most interesting. Always good to find a GH fan even more hard core than myself. :D She is learning to dance Regency style, demonstrated a Regency curtsey - & she has had her mantua maker (haha!) make up a Regency muslin dress with an authentic looking Regency print. It was gorgeous! & I was surprised how many parts there were to it

I had met Linda (from the Facebook group) & we went to get our copies of Jen Kloester's books signed. I was too embarrassed to bring my copy of her biography of GH to the conference (Chris left it in the rain!) but I had brought my copy ofGeorgette Heyer's Regency World I had met her earlier & she had let me try on a pair of GH's gloves (given to her by GH's family, they also gave her a stunningly beautiful book from GH's childhood, with GH's name inscribed in her own childish hand! I was in total fan girl mode. *blush* I did gush. GH was 5ft 10 but she had really small hands. I'm a lot shorter than that & with really short fingers, but I could barely get them on.

I was invited to sit with the Facebook group & we had quite the gossip. They were stunned at how cheaply you can pick up Heyer titles in op shops over here.I'm not big on FB but I think I'm going to join!

Lunch was wonderful. With the venue & the sumptuous food served this wasn't a cheap event, but the group thought GH's memory deserves things being done in style.

The Q&A panel was interesting, although Jen obviously felt uncomfortable that most of the questions were directed at her.

I learned heaps but I'll make that my next post.

The author/speakers were

Jen Kloester
Anne Gracie
Isolde Martyn
Alison Goodman
Susannah Fullerton (she was also one of the organisers)

Other speakers

Katrina Clifford
Ruth Williamson
Carmel Nestor
Joanna Penglase
Amanda Jones

The last two were the other organisers.


message 19: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
It sounds great, Carol, and thank you for taking the time to tell us all it. Of all the presenters, I had only heard of Jen Kloester before, but now I will investigate the other speakers listed.
Sumptuous food and venue, sounds about right to honor GH!
Regency dancing seems so difficult, I bet it would take years to learn.
Looking forward to future posts.


message 20: by Abigail (new)

Abigail Bok (regency_reader) | 1419 comments I’m so enjoying your bulletins!


message 21: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments My daughter took country dancing, the kind of dancing featured in the Regency era, in school in the UK from the time she was 4 1/2. She was also issued a recorder to learn at the same time, and became first chair on the flute in HS. It was nice to have the extras built in while we were there, it was considered part & parcel of a well-rounded person.


message 22: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 111 comments In a lot of places you can take classes in country dancing as an adult - there's English and Scottish groups locally, and I'm sure bigger centres have more varieties. It does take a little while to pick up the steps and figures, but you can learn enough to have a lot of fun surprisingly quickly. Often these lessons are often given by volunteer groups who are very enthusiastic and friendly. They organize informal parties, too.


message 23: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
A co-worker of mine does Scottish dancing, (not the Highland Fling type, but group dancing, argh I don't know the proper words for it) and she showed me some of the dances on paper, and she said there is someone who calls the dance to remind people of their steps. It seemed very complicated, but she has been doing it for years, so she understands what the moves are and the calls mean.


message 24: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1776 comments Irish set dancing would be along these lines. It's very energetic and you would want to be fit to join in. I did Irish dancing until my early teens. I was so slim and fit while I was doing it. I'd get a hernia now just watching it :)


message 25: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments I could do Irish and Scottish dancing up until a few years back. My husband and I were coming back from a reception on a French ship and heard Celtic music, found Enter the Haggis playing at a bar. We came in, me in velvet dress & John in his formal uniform, and we joined the crowd and ended up with everyone watching us dance to the music. It was quite the evening. I use to take the family to ceilidhs all the time, kept us fit, burned off energy from the kids & was so much fun. I miss dancing. I seat dance now. ;-)


message 26: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
Seat dancing is under-rated, to be sure!

Can anyone waltz? My Uncle was a great ballroom dancer, and I really was quite hard on his feet when he tried to waltz with me. It is so hard for me to be led.


message 27: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1776 comments I used to waltz with my Dad many years ago. In fact he taught me how. It's a wonderful dance.


message 28: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments My dad taught me to dance, he was very light on his feet. We waltzed, and he taught me the dances that went with Big Band music. He played clarinet with some of the bands when they needed someone to bulk up their numbers. In later years he collected over 65,000 records, most of them Big Band, and had a radio show. The records took over what was once a dining room which became a den then a record library. He also taught me the rudiments of swing dancing and jitterbug, which I took to with enthusiasm and used to do with my college beau.


message 29: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1776 comments Nice memories Kim. My Dad died a long time ago but I still remember those times clearly.


message 30: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments Me, 2. Because he was on the radio, I still hear his voice clearly in my head. We have tapes that he made of his shows, but those are mostly with my brother's family back East.


message 31: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 1776 comments Oh my word. Tapes!! It would be wonderful to hear a voice again after all these years. He was a very old fashioned man and not the easiest to please but hey he was still my Dad.


message 32: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Cellier | 34 comments Sadly I wasn't able to make it to the GH conference in the end but a few years back I went to the annual Jane Austen festival here in Canberra. It's a whole weekend and includes a ball on the Saturday night. They have various events during the day, including dancing lessons for those attending the ball. As Cheryl said, you can learn enough to have fun pretty quickly. The dances are set up so that the first couple leads and everyone else just has to copy which helps a lot. Still gets confusing at times, of course! :)

It made me realise why they all wore gloves though! My friend and I had made our own dresses and we had gloves and the full outfit for the ball but I didn't wear them for the practice. And it was surprising how intense it felt to hold a bunch of strangers' hands in the dance when it was skin on skin. Quite a different experience than when wearing gloves.


message 33: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Melanie wrote: "Sadly I wasn't able to make it to the GH conference in the end but a few years back I went to the annual Jane Austen festival here in Canberra. It's a whole weekend and includes a ball on the Satur..."

That is a shame - but JASA is planning to do another one in four years time - maybe you can go then.

I remember learning ballroom dancing when a very shy 14 year old. I found it very uncomfortable touching & being in such close proximity to *gasp* boys!

Alison Goodman demonstrated the Regency curtsey which is one leg forward, rather than a bent leg back. looked tricky!


message 34: by QNPoohBear (new)

QNPoohBear | 1391 comments It sounds like a wonderful conference. I hate it when only middle aged and older people show up at historical-related things. I'm always the youngest person there. I know plenty of younger people who love Heyer but none of us can afford to travel to Australia.

Susannah Fullerton is or was president of Jane Austen Society of Australia. She has written about dancing in the Regency period and Pride and Prejudice at 200.


message 35: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (last edited Aug 22, 2016 12:27PM) (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
QNPoohBear wrote: "It sounds like a wonderful conference. I hate it when only middle aged and older people show up at historical-related things. I'm always the youngest person there. I know plenty of younger people w..."

Yes, the Jane Austen Society of Australia were indeed the organisers. I'll bet their Jane conference is great.

This is only the third Georgette Heyer conference anywhere. JASA also ran the previous one & there was one in the UK in 2009.

I was surprised at the older aging but it was expensive. I could have afforded this when very young, but in my thirties/forties/ early fifties I had kids. they are a great (but loved!) money suck!

If the Grand Sophy film is made I imagine a new younger audience will be attracted.

Jen Kloester has said she will keep JASA up to date on the casting. I'm assuming that is over & above Jessie Buckley, Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter? I do think Stephen Fry would be a wonderful Sir Horace - & he is GH's most famous fan.

I was also surprised how many people knew each other. I knew there would be some as a JASA event, but a lot of people arrived in pairs or a group.

Once Dad died, until I discovered this group, I've only had Chris to talk to. My mother read Heyer too (she loved Death in the Stocks) but her dementia worsened after Dad's death.

& QnPB one of the speakers,academic Katrina Clifford, was young. She arrived with her grandmother & apparently she has a GH loving aunt as well.


message 36: by Marissa (last edited Aug 20, 2016 07:39AM) (new)

Marissa Doyle | 109 comments "Alison Goodman demonstrated the Regency curtsey which is one leg forward, rather than a bent leg back. looked tricky!"

Oh, I'd love to see that curtsey! There's a painting of Caroline of Brunswick being presented to King George and Queen Charlotte (with Prinny in the background looking far too young for reality) and Caroline is sort of lunging forward on one leg. It had always puzzled me because looks almost as if she's about to faint at their feet, but now it makes much more sense. :)


message 37: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Marissa wrote: ""Alison Goodman demonstrated the Regency curtsey which is one leg forward, rather than a bent leg back. looked tricky!"

Oh, I'd love to see that curtsey! There's a painting of Caroline of Brunswick..."


Ha! Alison (who looks around 35) said she was about to turn 50 & warned us that she could get down but might not be able to get back up! But she did it perfectly!


message 38: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
& from my talk with Jen Koestler when I got my book signed.

JK says the story about An Infamous Army being used as text at Sandhurst is absolutely true & well documented. Her nephew Jerry Rougier (who spoke at the blue plaque dedication) was whatever they call a military tutor there.

She said there is a lot of misinformation about GH out there - a lot of it from Gh's family. (not malicious - people simply remembering things wrong) For example. These Old Shades wan't written during the General Strike, but 6 months later (one of the speakers repeated this one, oops!)

& Penhallow wasn't written as a contract breaker. GH was actually very proud of this book.

JK also said she would try to join our discussions sometime but she is very busy writing another book. :)


message 39: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (last edited Aug 22, 2016 03:27PM) (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
& some final bits & bods.

The question I asked during the Q&A was how many copies of the Transformation of Philip Jetten by "Stella Martin" (as opposed to Powder & Patch) are known to exist & Jen's answer was 4(!)

One copy is with a family member
One Copy is at the British Library

Now I can't remember the others, so I have looked it up on World Cat & I hope this gels with what JK said

National Library of Scotland
University of Cambridge.

So if you find a copy in Grandma's attic or a garage sale it would be worth a lot of money! Old hardbacks of Mills & Boons don't turn up often. At my work I have only had one, by NZ author Essie Summers.

Sequels by other authors. GH's estate not keen on this idea. JK's own opinion is if they ever agree to it, they will go for a "name" author. Most popular request is giving Gideon (The Foundling) his own story.

Someone in the audience asked if JK would ever do a collection of GH's letters. JK visibly unenthused & doubtful if she would get permission from one of the letter holders to do this. Later on (during a lively discussion about plagiarists) JK said she probably earned about 1 cent an hour doing the biography. I think we have to accept JK's right to earn a living from her writing. She has more than done her bit to preserve GH's memory.

Someone from the audience asked about featuring one of GH's mysteries in a future conference. I think Susannah Fullerton misunderstood the question & was dismissive of the idea of a whole conference on the mysteries. But there was discussion about having it as one topic.

& with the registration,there was a vote for favourite hero,favourite heroine,favourite Heyer novel

Amanda had forgotten to bring the results with her but she was definite that favourite hero was Hugo from An Unknown Ajax. Favourite Book These Old Shades. Favourite heroine she thought was Sophy, with Venetia making a strong showing. Given the age of the attendees the favourite hero & heroines didn't surprise me. I think most of us when we get older would like a nice,capable guy who can make us laugh.. Even though it is my second favourite Heyer TOS did surprise me.

One of the speakers (JK?) also pointed out what a groundbreaking heroine Leonie was. Many heroines of the time were passive "dying swan" types, where Leonie was resourceful funny & brave.


message 40: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
& I wanted to give this it's own post.

Everyone remember the "bodice ripper"proposal for The Grand Sophy? JK read out scriptwriter Olivia Hatreed's (reassuring) response to our own Louise Sparrow!


message 41: by Louise Sparrow (new)

Louise Sparrow (louisex) | 458 comments Oh wow, I'm speechless, which doesn't happy often. I'm so glad I could take part in a small way!

Thanks Carol, and thank you for making us all feel a part of it with your great updates :)


message 42: by Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂ , Madam Mod (new)

Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂  | 4437 comments Mod
Louise Sparrow wrote: "Oh wow, I'm speechless, which doesn't happy often. I'm so glad I could take part in a small way!

Thanks Carol, and thank you for making us all feel a part of it with your great updates :)"


I've seen Hatreed's response on a couple of blogs too. :)

I took a couple of photos but most came out pretty crap. I'll see if I can edit them enough to make them worth posting.


message 43: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
Thank you for posting all of that info, Carol.

Very interesting, especially the question about sequels. I am not sure how I would feel about reading a sequel. Who could mimic her voice and writing style respectfully? Who would be able to come up with a suitable plot?

I have seen a recent boom of authors writing or rewriting stories from famous authors, or in the style of famous authors, and I am not completely sold on the idea.


message 44: by Melanie (new)

Melanie Cellier | 34 comments I second that I'm not sure how I'd feel about sequels!

And I'm interested (and pleased) to hear that the story about An Infamous Army and Sandhurst is true. My Year 12 modern history teacher told me about it when I chose the Battle of Waterloo for my independent study. She said I might think she was silly but I should really read this romance novel called An Infamous Army for an accurate account of the battle. I just laughed and told her I'd already read it and that's why I chose Waterloo for my essay :)


message 45: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments Well, Critterbee, I have read some enjoyable contributions of characters, & I've read some horrible ones. Nothing we say or do is going to stop the trend, but I take them as I find them. Some I will read, especially if I trust the author. Most I ignore.


message 46: by Kim (new)

Kim Kaso | 511 comments That was supposed to be "continuations" not "contributions". A pox on predictive text.


message 47: by Ceri (new)

Ceri | 103 comments Carol ♔ Type, Oh Queen! ♔ wrote: "& some final bits & bods.

The question I asked during the Q&A was how many copies of the Transformation of Philip Jetten by "Stella Martin" (as opposed to Powder & Patch) are known to exist & Jen'..."


Thank you so much for this update Carol, really interesting stuff :)


message 48: by Amy (new)

Amy (aggieamy) | 422 comments Wow. Thanks for the update. It sounds like such a splendid time.

I'll add my voice to the mob on the topic of sequels. I would love to read more of our favorite characters but I also worry that a poorly written sequel would ruin the first book for me. (I'm looking at you Men in Black 2!)


message 49: by Amy (new)

Amy (aggieamy) | 422 comments Marissa wrote: Oh, I'd love to see that curtsey! There's a painting of Caroline of Brunswick being presented to King George and Queen Charlotte (with Prinny in the background looking far too young for reality) and Caroline is sort of lunging forward on one leg. It had always puzzled me because looks almost as if she's about to faint at their feet, but now it makes much more sense. :)


Do you have a link to that image? I'm having such a hard time imagining any of this!


message 50: by Critterbee❇ (new)

Critterbee❇ (critterbee) | 2674 comments Mod
Amy wrote: "Do you have a link to that image? I'm having such a hard time imagining any of this! "

As a matter of fact, I did some googling and could not find an image that matched that description, and would really like to see it.


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