Thursday, September 19, 2013

Bits and pieces

A collection of news items from the historical fiction world and elsewhere.

The planning team for the Historical Novel Society's North American conferences is looking for board members and committee volunteers to work on their next event, to take place in June 2015 (location TBA).  I co-founded the conference, along with author Ann Chamberlin, and worked on four successive events as registration coordinator and treasurer (2005-2011).  It was a rewarding and informative experience, if occasionally a hectic one as the conference dates approached!  The board of directors is volunteer-based and needs new helpers and ideas.  If you'd like to get more involved in the historical fiction community, working directly with authors and others in the publishing field, this is a great way to do so.  Interested?  Want more information?  See their website for details.

For Sarah Waters fans, The Bookseller announced last week that she'll have a new novel out in autumn 2014: "Set in a tense London in 1922, in the wake of the First World War, with disillusioned ex-servicemen, and the out-of-work and hungry demanding change."

The HNS website has a new series of feature articles, written by Stephanie Renee Dos Santos, about the role that serendipity plays in the writing and publishing of historical fiction. Each of these articles features a different historical novelist who reveals an eerie coincidence or aspect of synchronicity that happened to him or her during the research or writing process.  New entries appear every Sunday and will continue over eight weeks in total.  So far the authors interviewed have been Maryanne O'Hara, Essie Fox, and Erika Mailman; Glen Craney is next.

From Variety: Roma Downey's Lightworkers Media has optioned Alice Hoffman's The Dovekeepers for a miniseries.

The Oxford University Press blog examines the six novels (including four historicals) on the Man Booker shortlist.

Finally, a giveaway opportunity.  I read Eugenia Price's Savannah Quartet in the 1980s, when they were first published.  They're classic historical sagas that bring to life the intertwining stories of three prominent families of antebellum Georgia from the early 19th century up through the Civil War.  These romantic "gentle reads" (no explicit sex or violence) introduce readers to the history, geography, and architecture of the quintessential Deep South city of Savannah while evoking the characters' lives, loves, struggles, and triumphs.  Here's a link to the series on Goodreads.

Turner Publishing has just reissued all four books with the classy cover designs above a big improvement over the ratty old paperbacks I own and since I enjoyed reading them so much way back when, I thought I'd share the following giveaway offered by the publisher.  Up for grabs is one set of all four books, to be given away to one US or Canadian reader.  Interested?  Please fill out the form below.  Deadline Friday, September 27th.  Good luck!

(Sorry, this giveaway has ended.)


  1. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Thanks for sharing the link about the Man Booker -- been dying to read The Testament of Mary. I have an e-ARC of The Luminaries and hope I can get to it before it expires.

    I'm loving the serendipity series -- thanks for linking to it as I want to tweet it tomorrow.

    1. I just preordered The Luminaries, since I prefer hard copies for longer books (830pp!). And I may end up taking Testament of Mary home with me today if it's still on our bestseller rack, but it wouldn't surprise me if someone else snagged it first!

  2. Man, I always forget to check out stuff on the HNS page. I will have to correct that!

    Also, I reached out yesterday via their HNS website and said I would be happy to volunteer with something!

    1. That's great - it is a lot of fun, and with so many spots currently open, they definitely need new blood!

    2. Am tempted to volunteer but am making myself wait a bit -- given that I always have a June conference to organize for work, it seems very reckless to try to add on another!

    3. I once organized an April conference at the university the same year as the HNS one - it was a lot!