Category: Talking about history

The Great Avoidance. How to Avoid Gillian at Continuum 13 (Australian National SF Convention)

My regular guide for the wary. If you avoid me, you will miss my news. There will be news, so avoiding me is a great way of remaining in a state of mildly addled curiosity. If you avoid me, you will also avoid chocolate. I am thus a great aid to dieting. It’s good chocolate, …

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1 January 2016

I’ve had a very productive and exciting 2015, but also a very difficult year. Today sums up the irony of all those breakthroughs still garnering me not -enough paid work and so forth. You don’t need to know the ‘so forth’ – I’ve been chronicling it all year. And that was my year in summary. …

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BiblioBuffet – final post

A few years ago, I wrote for BiblioBuffet. I loved writing for them. I was paid to be edited by an excellent editor and to write about all my favourite topics. Today, in my search checks, my final article came up. If people still want to read it, then I thought it should go in …

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On self, authenticity, othering, religion and heat

It’s a bit warm right now. It was, despite being warm, six degrees warmer in Melbourne and do-not-ask hot in Adelaide. And this is my excuse for not giving you an exciting post. It’s only an excuse, however. I read some pamphlets and books from the late 17th century and am slowly getting a handle …

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On Listening and Writing

My last class for the year was all about teaching my students to listen to the stories told by traditional owners, and how not to explore artefacts as complete outsiders while considering oneself an insider. We talked about why. We did lots of listening. In fact, we spent nearly an hour and a half and …

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The Beast, The Janna Mysteries and The Janna Chronicles – guest post by Felicity Pulman

I’ve long been fascinated by the Middle Ages and when a character popped into my head: a young woman, daughter of a wortwyf, whose mother dies in mysterious circumstances but who is unable to avenge her mother’s murder because of her own lowly circumstances, the temptation to write a series about Janna’s quest for justice …

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On History in Fiction and me: the current state of play

I’ve done almost all my teaching prep for tomorrow. It was very interesting, because tomorrow’s class is pretty much what I’ve been researching recently but from a writer’s point of view. When I first taught this, I used the same notes for writer’s and researcher’s views, but now I have clearly bifurcated lines. This is …

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Women’s History Month – a bit of background

In 2005 someone asked me to write a piece about Women’s History Month. I just found it in my folder of “Have no idea what happened to this” articles, so I’m sharing it with you today. Some of you may remember that I recently (in historical terms) checked with the surviving members of the first …

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Asking Historians About Food

This post first appeared on my Food History blog on 14/9/2007 I get asked about historical background for fiction by quite a few writers. I hear “I want a Renaissance/Medieval/Victorian dinner – tell me what to do” from an increasing number of people. It’s about time I explained certain basics. Sensible people take these basics …

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