Monday, April 2, 2018

2017 HNSA MELBOURNE CONFERENCE


Join our celebration!

On the weekend of 8th – 10th September 2017, the Historical Novel Society Australasia (HNSA) is holding its Melbourne conference at Swinburne University, Hawthorn, exploring the theme of Identity: Origins and Diaspora. Our full programme can be found at our website. 


Kate Forsyth

Over 60 fabulous speakers

In a celebration of the historical fiction genre, our three day informative and interactive weekend program will showcase over 60 speakers discussing writing craft, research, inspiration, publishing pathways and personal histories. Among these are acclaimed historical novelists such as Kerry Greenwood, Kate Forsyth, Deborah Challinor, Lucy Treloar, Sophie Masson, Sulari Gentill, Robert Gott, Arnold Zable, Gary Crew, Melissa Ashley, Kate Mildenhall, Juliet Marillier, Pamela Hart, Kelly Gardiner and Libby Hathorn.

History with a twist...

Our opening reception will be held on Friday 8th September where attendees will celebrate  Kate Forsyth’s Beauty in Thorns with plenty of prizes. There will also be a lively round table discussion led by Nicolas Brasch in which Arnold Zable, Gary Crew, Hanifa Deen and Ngahuia te Awekotuku will discuss our theme, in particular, the role of the historical novelist in exploring first encounters in Australia and New Zealand’s colonial pasts, the migrant experience underlying those nations’ multicultural identities, and whether an author’s origins are relevant to the story telling. 


Three concurrent streams

The conference program on September will consist of three streams. The first will continue to explore the conference theme and include interviews with a number of talented authors. The second stream will deal with research and writing craft; the third will consist of an academic programme. 

Our guest author is Kerry Greenwood, author of the Phryne Fisher Mysteries, who will provide insights into her novels, her writing processes, the TV adaptation of her series, and other aspects of her stellar career.


Kerry Greenwood

Exploring our Australasian national identity

Other panels exploring our theme in our first stream include 'First Encounters and Our Colonial Past' with Lucy Treloar, Deborah Challinor, Nicole Alexander and Andrew Peters, followed by 'Immigrant Stories and Diaspora: How Pioneers Adapt and Survive in their New Land' with Kim Kelly, Arnold Zable, Maxine Alterio and Vicky Adin. And Natasha Lester, Robyn Cadwallader, Elisabeth Storrs and Kathryn Gauci will explore 'Venturing Forth: Exploring Historical Fiction beyond National Boundaries and Australian History.'

Time travelling, world wars and parallel narratives
Our second stream on Saturday will canvas various aspects of research, sub-genres and the writing craft. Wendy J Dunn, Barbara Gaskell Denvil, Stephanie Smee and Rachel Nightingale will discuss 'How to Transmute Research into Compelling Historical Fiction' while Paddy Richardson, Elise McCune, Justin Sheedy and Julian Leatherdale ponder 'World at War: The Appeal of 20th Century Historical Fiction.' 'The Outlander Effect: Parallel Narratives and Time Travelling' will see Belinda Murrell, Felicity Pulman, Gary Crew and Ella Carey discuss the challenges of weaving tales of two protagonists from different time periods into the plots and themes.

Deborah Challinor

'First pages' pitch contest

Our Saturday programme will end with our very popular First Pages Pitch Contest where an actor will read aloud chosen submissions from aspiring authors to industry experts who will provide a critique. The session will also provide other attendees with a chance to learn what attracts the attention of agents and publishers when seeking new historical fiction. Entrants will remain anonymous other than the winner. Our judges are Alison Green (Pantera Press), Sophie Masson (Eagle Books), Mandy Brett (Text Publishing). Rachel Nightingale will act as narrator. You can enter the Pitch Contest here.

Personal histories 

The first stream on Sunday sees two Personal Histories sessions where Kate Forsyth explains why she delved into adult historical fiction after writing acclaimed fantasy novels for children and young adults while Deborah Challinor reveals where she obtained the inspiration for her three historical series, numerous standalone novels, and non-fiction books?

Award winning author, Sophie Masson, who has more than 50 novels published in Australia and internationally, will be asked what drives her passion for writing and love of history, while Lucy Treloar will explain what she thinks attracts readers and critics to her writing after her debut novel was released to a whirlwind of local and international acclaim.
Lucy Treloar

In 'The Long Haul: Writing Successful Series and Multiple Books', Juliet Marillier,  Libby Hathorn and Anne Gracie will reveal how they maintain momentum. And what keeps the spark of inspiration from being doused.


A much anticipated panel will be exploring the appeal of historical mysteries in which Sulari Gentill, Robert Gott, Meg Keneally and Gary Corby will ponder why readers are attracted to the addition of history to murder and mayhem, and the challenges novelists encounter when creating detectives who lack modern crime kits.

Sulari Gentill

Sub-genres and the writing craft

Our second Sunday stream will continue to highlight issues relating to the writing craft. Alan Tucker, Gabrielle Wang, Wendy Orr and Pamela Rushby will tell us why writing CYA fiction is not an easy option. Isolde Martyn, Lisa Chaplin, Alison Stuart and Anna Campbell will tease out whether there is a difference between historical romance and historical love stories. As a treat, Kate Mildenhall, Melissa Ashley, Greg Pyers and Luke Devenish will discuss the 'Modern Voice in Historical Fiction'. Should an historical novelist cater for the tastes of 21st Century readers by introducing modern expressions and dialogue in their novels? Is it valid to introduce current sensibilities to characters who would otherwise have been constrained by their own societies?
Anne Gracie


Pathways to publication

Our final sessions for Sunday will include 'Pathways to Publication', Lindy Cameron talks to agent Clare Forster and publishers Alison Green and Mandy Brett on the expectations of agents and publishers when looking for the next big thing in historical fiction.

Writing outside your comfort zone - sex and violence

And you will not want to miss out on our concluding panel where Kate Forsyth, Luke Devenish and Anna Campbell will read some of their saucier excerpts as well as provide tips on writing 'Outside the Comfort Zone: Writing Sex and Violence.'

Super sessions

There are ten skills-based workshop super sessions running concurrently with the main conference program on Historical Mysteries, Historical Romance, Children and Young Adult Fiction, Pitching to Publishers, Social Media, Scrivener, Self-Publishing, Family History, Trove, and the Business of Writing. Attendees will gain the benefit of tutors such as Sulari Gentill, Anne Gracie, Isolde Martyn, Elisabeth Storrs, Elizabeth Lhuede, GS Johnston, Kelly Gardiner, Hazel Edwards, Eleanor Limprecht, Rachel Franks and Lisa Chaplin. Purchase of a ticket entitles attendees an entry into a $100 Dymocks Gift Card Giveaway.
Kelly Gardiner

Transforming research and the clash of armour

Dr Gillian Polack is offering two masterclasses focused on how to weave research into convincing and authentic historical fiction. There also will be interactive sessions on armour with Matt Curran (Leif the Viking) and historical costumes with Rachel Nightingale. There is also a chance to have your manuscript assessed  by industry experts, Alison Arnold and Irina DunnBook your appointment here.

Academic programme

HNSA is conducting a third stream which will give academics the chance to answer a call for papers in two topics: 'Bio-fiction: Can you Defame the Dead?' and 'The Lie of History'. Successful applicants will then present their papers. General admission is free to all attendees to enjoy listening to these fascinating discussions but spaces are limited so please reserve a space. More details about the academic sessions are available here.

Inaugural HNSA short story contest

HNSA is excited to announce the establishment of its inaugural short story contest with a prize of $500! Many thanks to Eagle Books for sponsoring the prize and to Sandra Gulland agreeing to act as judge. The winning entry and two other short listed stories will be published in Backstory ezine. The Historical Novel Society is also offering a free membership to the winner. You can enter the contest via this link.

Conference dinner

Robert Gott
Last but not least, don't miss our conference dinner where you can enjoy highlights of the day with your fellow attendees while eating a delicious meal and listening to our dinner speaker Robert Gott.

You can buy tickets to our conference and learn more about our speakers via our website www.hnsa.org.au. Book now to take advantage of early bird registration. 

Let's Make a Noise about Historical Fiction!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Imagining the Past Podcast Series: Kelly Gardiner and Catherine Padmore




HNSA is proud to announce the release of the final podcast in our series 'Imagining the Past' before the 2017 HNSA Melbourne Conference. This week our host, Kelly Gardiner, is in the hot seat chatting with colleague, Catherine Padmore, about historical bio-fiction. The podcast is a taste of what you will hear at the 2017 HNSA Conference in Melbourne from 8-10 September at Swinburne University Hawthorn. More information about the programme is available at our website.



Dr Catherine Padmore was awarded her PhD in creative writing in 2002, and she has taught literary studies and creative writing at La Trobe since 2005. Her first novel, Sibyl’s Cave (Allen and Unwin, 2004) was shortlisted for The Australian/Vogel Award and commended in the first book category of The Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (south-east Asia and south Pacific region). Catherine has been awarded two retreat fellowships at Varuna, the Writers’ House, and in 2014 she was short-listed for their Publisher Introduction Program. She has novels-in-progress about Amy Dudley and Levina Teerlinc. Her short creative works have been published in Island, The Journal of Australian Writers and Writing, The Big Issue, The Australian, Dotlit, Antithesis and in the anthology Reflecting on Melbourne (Poetica Christi, 2009). Catherine’s scholarly work has been published in Australian Literary Studies, TEXT, JASAL, Life Writing and Lateral, with chapters in Telling Stories: Australian Life and Literature 1935-2012 (MUP, 2013) and Expanding the Canon of Early Modern Women’s Writing (CSP, 2010).

You can purchase Sibyl's Cave via Allen & Unwin.


An evocative novel about memory and discovery anchored to the landscape and colours of Italy, England and Australia. Shortlisted for the Australian/Vogel's Literary Award 2001.

Steeped in the landscape and colours of its locations, Sibyl's Cave follows the orphaned Billie through her childhood in Italy to the United Kingdom during World War II with her adopted family, to art school and then, finally, to her new life as an adult in Australia.

Interrupting the reclusive island life that Billie shares with Troy her housekeeper and Stan her housemate on the Hawkesbury River, Billie's niece Lorelei and her daughter Elissa arrive unannounced from England. As their lives intertwine stories emerge and secrets are revealed.

With an evocative eye for personality and place, Sibyl's Cave alternates between Billie's past, unearthed in her diaries and memories, and her present-day life on the island. It is a rich story about family and the importance of identity.


Kelly Gardiner’s most recent book is 1917 (published early in 2017), a novel for young readers set during the First World War. Her previous books include Goddess, based on the remarkable life of the seventeenth century French swordswoman and opera singer, Julie d’Aubigny. Kelly’s historical novels for young adults include The Sultan’s Eyes and Act of Faith, set during the time of the English Civil Wars and the Inquisition. Both books were shortlisted for the Ethel Turner Prize in the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Her books for younger readers are the ‘Swashbuckler’ adventure trilogy Ocean Without End, The Pirate’s Revenge and The Silver Swan – set in Malta during the Napoleonic invasion, and a picture book, Billabong Bill’s Bushfire Christmas. Kelly has worked on newspapers, magazines and websites, and her articles, poems, book reviews and travel writing have appeared in journals, magazines and newspapers as diverse as ‘The New York Times’, ‘Marie Claire’, ‘New Idea’, and ‘Going Down Swinging’. She works at the State Library of Victoria and teaches creative writing at La Trobe University. Kelly is also the co-host of Unladylike, a podcast on women and writing. And, of course, is the host of HNSA's Imagining the Past podcast series. 

You can connect with Kelly via Twitter and Facebook. Links to purchase her books are available at her website.


The war in France rages in the skies, and support for the war in Australia turns cold. Alex flies high above the trenches of the Western Front, while a world away his sister Maggie finds herself in the midst of political upheaval. Somehow, both must find the courage to fight on.
1917 is the fourth in Scholastic’s ‘Australia’s Great War’ series, commemorating the centenary of the First World War. It is written for readers nine and up.

HNSA 2017 Conference

Kelly Gardiner and Catherine Padmore will be appearing in our academic programme: 'Bio-Fiction: Can you Defame the Dead?' at HNSA 2017 on Saturday 9 September with Kate Forsyth, Ariella van Luyn and Gabrielle Ryan. The session is included in the price of a full weekend or day ticket but seating is limited so please reserve your seat. Our second academic panel is 'The Lie of History: How the Mirror of the Present shapes the Past for its own Purposes' on Sunday 10 September with Wendy J Dunn, Diane Murray, Glenice Whitting, Cheryl Hayden and Gillian Polack followed by a discussion between Prof Josie Arnold and Christopher Raja.

Kelly is also conducting a workshop on Scrivener for Beginners. Cost is $20 once a full weekend or day ticket is purchased. Purchase of a workshop ticket entitles the attendee entry into a draw to win a $100 Dymocks Gift Card. You can find out more about our suite of workshops at our website. 

The HNSA 2017 Melbourne Conference is being held on 8-10 September 2017 at Swinburne University. This celebration of the historical fiction genre will showcase over 60 speakers discussing inspiration, writing craft, research, publishing pathways and personal histories in our weekend programme. Among the many acclaimed historical novelists participating are Kerry Greenwood, Kate Forsyth, Deborah Challinor, Libby Hathorn, Lucy Treloar, Sophie Masson, Sulari Gentill, Robert Gott and Arnold Zable. The HNSA’s speakers’ list is available on the HNSA website.

In addition to the two stream weekend programme, there will be ten craft based super sessions and two research masterclasses.You won’t want to miss our interactive sessions on armour and historical costumes either! Purchase a ticket and you will be entered in the draw to win a $100 Dymocks Gift Card.


Our First Pages Pitch Contest offers an opportunity for submissions to be read aloud to a panel of publishers. And we are delighted to announce the introduction of our inaugural HNSA Short Story Contest with a $500 prize!




Let’s make a noise about historical fiction!


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Interview with Elise McCune


Elise McCune is a Melbourne based Australian author. She was born in Cronulla, New South Wales, Australia. In 1973, she moved to Perth, Western Australia and raised her two children, Lisa and Brett. She worked for ten years in the Western Australian Museum and after this she lived on a 5000-acre farm, two hundred kilometres north of Perth. In 2016, she gained a Certificate of Completion, the University of Iowa’s International Writing Program on fiction writing, centered on female authorial voices and female literary characters. The type of story she likes to read has passion and intrigue and a family secret at its heart.  Exactly the type of story she likes to write. 

What is the inspiration for your current book?

Some years ago, I was staying in Mission Beach and I visited the castle ruins at Paronella Park in the north Queensland rainforest. It is a beautiful, fantastical place, and became the inspiration for Castillo de Suenos in my novel. So it came about by chance that I chose Queensland and the sense of place was one I tried to convey to my readers.Is there a particular theme you are exploring in this book?
In Castle of Dreams, a dual narrative story, I explore how war impacts not only on those who go to war but those left behind on the home front. When I was researching I found that in WW2 American servicemen were stationed in far north Queensland where the 1940’s storyline is set. I already had the idea for two sisters, Vivien and Rose, growing up in a castle in the rainforest and when Robert Shine, an American soldier, found his way into my story, their love triangle echoed the triangle of the American and Australia allies fighting the Japanese in the Pacific War.

Which period of history particularly interests you? Why?

I have always been interested in military history so it was natural that I set my stories against a backdrop of WW1 or WW2 as these periods of war had a great impact on people around the world.

What resources do you use to research your book?

For my research, I read primary sources like diaries, letters and newspaper reports (Trove is wonderful!). I read books written about and of the period I am researching. I use Google but online information can be inaccurate so be careful and check more than one source. I use my wonderful local library and inter-library loans for books I don’t necessarily want to keep on my bookshelf, and also, I always read bibliographies carefully in each book as they are a source of more information on the subject you are researching.

What is more important to you: historical authenticity or accuracy?

I don’t think you can have a good story unless it is historically accurate. If it is necessary to move, say a battle scene, by a year to suit the plot and the author makes a note of this in the acknowledgements that’s fine (occasionally). Otherwise the book should be labeled ‘faction’.

Which character in your current book is your favourite? Why?


Vivien Blake, a photographer who was a woman of her time (1940’s) and she came alive for me when I was writing her. Women have had an active role in photography since its inception. While researching I found that in 1900 British and American censuses women made up almost 20 percent of the profession at a time when it was unusual for women to have a profession. Many Australian women photographers worked before the Great War and more did hand colouring and darkroom work. At that time it was thought that ‘lady operators’ should only photograph women and families. By WW2 women photographers were working in advertising and portraiture and the worlds of fashion and theatre. I made Vivien a photographer because I wanted to have a motif of light through the story. The American soldier is named Robert Shine and the rainforest is lit with filtered light and the sparkling glitter ball that hangs from the ceiling in the castle’s ballroom showers the dancers with light. There are many references to light in the story.

Are you a ‘plotter’ or a ‘pantser’? How long does it generally take you to write a book?

I would like to say I’m a plotter as it would save so much time. I do start off with a detailed outline and I know the ending of the story before I start writing but inevitably it changes along the way. I write to find out what happens along the way and once I know my characters it all starts to fall into place like a jigsaw puzzle. I can then write the chapters in any order if I wish. It takes me about eighteen months to write a book.

Which authors have influenced you?

Katherine Mansfield. Pat Barker, Vladimir Nabokov, the Brontes, Virginia Woolf, Mary Wesley.

What advice would you give an aspiring author?

Never give up. I have three books in the bottom drawer, my apprentice books, and every one of them taught me something about writing. If you don’t have time to write a novel then write short stories, or a blog, or write reviews of  books. Writing should not be at the bottom of a long list of ‘to do’ things, it should be at the top. Treat it like a job, even a part-time job, and not a hobby. Set goals. Those first words are the hardest part. Then rewrite.

Tell us about your next book or work in progress.

It is a time split novel set during WW1 and in 2015. The earlier narrative thread is set in the southwest of Western Australia where I lived for several years on a vineyard, with detours to other parts of the world and finally, and most importantly, for this is where the heart of the story is, in the Tumut Valley where the Wiradjuri Aboriginal people lived for thousands of years prior to European settlement. My story is about abandoned gardens and love and romance, betrayal, and of course big family secrets and what more beautiful place to write about than the lovely valley that sits on the north-west foothills of the Snowy Mountains.


Castle of Dreams, published by Allen & Unwin, is a poignant, luminous novel about two sisters, about a mother and daughter, a loved granddaughter, the past that separates them and the healing that comes with forgiveness. Norwegian publisher, Cappelen Damm, published Castle of Dreams in translation in April 2017.

You can buy a copy of Castle of Dreams via AmazonKobo, Booktopia, and the Book Depository.

Elise McCune will be taking part in a panel on Worlds at War: the appeal of 20th Century Historical Fiction with Paddy Richardson, Justin Sheedy and Julian Leatherdale at the HNSA conference in September. She is also appearing in our Meet the Author satellite event on 20 August at the Mail Exchange Hotel, 688 Bourke St, Melbourne from 2.30-4.30pm discussing War and Romance Historical Fiction with Gabrielle Gardner, Alison Stuart, and Sylvia Karakaltsas. More information and tickets are available from the HNSA website

HNSA 2017 Conference

The HNSA 2017 Melbourne Conference is being held on 8-10 September 2017 at Swinburne University. This celebration of the historical fiction genre will showcase over 60 speakers discussing inspiration, writing craft, research, publishing pathways and personal histories in our weekend programme. Among the many acclaimed historical novelists participating are Kerry Greenwood, Kate Forsyth, Deborah Challinor, Libby Hathorn, Lucy Treloar, Sophie Masson, Sulari Gentill, Robert Gott and Arnold Zable. The HNSA’s speakers’ list is available on the HNSA website.

In addition to the two stream weekend programme, there will be ten craft based super sessions and two research masterclasses.You won’t want to miss our interactive sessions on armour and historical costumes either! Purchase a ticket and you will be entered in the draw to win a $100 Dymocks Gift Card.


Our First Pages Pitch Contest offers an opportunity for submissions to be read aloud to a panel of publishers. And we are delighted to announce the introduction of our inaugural HNSA Short Story Contest with a $500 prize!




Let’s make a noise about historical fiction!

Monday, August 7, 2017

An interview with Alison Stuart

Award winning Australian author, Alison Stuart, learned her passion for history from her father. She has been writing stories since her teenage years but it was not until 2007 that her first full length novel was published. Alison has now published seven full length historical romances and a collection of her short stories.  Her disposition for writing about soldier heroes may come from her varied career as a lawyer in the military and fire services. These days when she is not writing she is travelling and routinely drags her long suffering husband around battlefields and castles. 

What is the inspiration for your current book?

My historical passion is the period of the English Civil War and AND THEN MINE ENEMY continues that interest. My interest in this period can be dated back to my father reading  Du Maurier's THE KING'S GENERAL to me when I was eight. I fell in love with cavaliers and Roundheads and I love exploring this fascinating, turbulent, and important period of history in my writing.

Is there a particular theme you are exploring in this book?

With this series (AND THEN MINE ENEMY is the first in a two book series) I am tackling the difficult subject of the period of the war itself which ran from 1642 and 1645 through the vehicle of a family divided by their belief systems into supporting either King or Parliament and where the women of the family balanced their loyalties and their love.

What resources do you use to research your book?

When you have been obsessed by this period of history for as long as I have, I have accumulated a wide research library going back to Gardner's 8 book series. More and more is being written on the period so I now have to be a bit selective. As much as I have embraced the internet, books are still my first 'go to', but how we ever wrote without the wealth of material on the internet, I do not know! As a passionate user of Scrivener, storing and sorting research for each book is now so much easier and beats hastily scribbled notes in a plethora of notebooks!

What is more important to you: historical authenticity or accuracy?

I think to portray historical authenticity you need accuracy. Both are equally important! It is how you use the accuracy to craft a story that engages a reader without lecturing to them, is the skill of a writer. I strive for accuracy in the details and where I am forced to tweak historical fact, that will always be noted and explained in my 'Authors note'.

Which character in your current book is your favourite? Why?

I love my hero (I love all my heroes!), Adam Coulter. Adam is deeply conflicted, an outsider within his family long before the war began and by choosing Parliament, through the dictates of his conscience, he is setting himself irretrievably against his family and yet he is still drawn to them by deep ties of blood. His journey is the representative of the theme of the book.... quite literally 'by the sword divided'. 


Are you a plotter or a pantser? How long does it generally take to write a book?

I am a pantser who is training herself to be a better plotter. As I get further into my writing career I no longer have the luxury of time to go down the rabbit holes and blind alleyways that being a pantser involves. My early books were written over years, now I consider myself lucky if I have a year to go from a standing start to a finished product and to do that I have to be more efficient and have a better idea of where the major plot points will fall.

Which authors have influenced you?

I think influence comes early and there is no doubt that the greatest influence on me were the books of Rosemary Sutcliff. She had an ability to meld that historical accuracy and authenticity into tales of individuals caught in the wider events of their day that (to this day!) engage the reader. Her story of Sir Thomas Fairfax (THE RIDER OF THE WHITE HORSE) lives on my keeper shelf, much thumbed and annotated! I have also mentioned Du Maurier's THE KING'S GENERAL - another on my keeper shelf.

What advice would you give an aspiring author?

Do not expect the first draft of your book to be the one you will be sending out to editors and publishers. What you have to achieve with that first draft is a 'book shaped' object full of holes and question marks but has at least achieved a beginning, a middle and an end. The craft of writing is in the rewrite! Crafting the most perfect first 3 chapters the world has seen will not make you a published author.
Tell us about your next book or work in progress?

I have a few irons in the fire at the moment! Firstly I do need to finish book 2 of the Feathers in the Wind series (NOW MY SWORN FRIEND) which will take Perdita and Adam to the end of the war. Then I am moving away from my beloved period to turn to crime with book 1 of a historical mystery series set in Singapore in 1910 (the first of what I plan to be the 'Very Colonial Mystery' series) which is currently doing the rounds. I am also playing around with an Australian set historical romance series but that is in its early days.


AND THEN MINE ENEMY

England 1642: Hardened mercenary, Adam Coulter returns to England sickened by violence, seeking only peace, but he finds England on the brink of civil war. He has seen first-hand what that will mean for every man, woman and child and wants no part of it. King or Parliament? Neutrality is not an option and Adam can only be true to his conscience, not the dictates of his family. 

Having escaped a loveless marriage, Perdita Gray has found much needed sanctuary and the love of a good man, but her fragile world begins to crumble as Adam Coulter bursts into her life. This stranger brings not only the reality of war to her doorstep but reignites an old family feud, threatening everything and everyone she holds dear. As the war and family tensions collide around them, Adam and Perdita are torn between old loyalties and a growing attraction that must be resisted.

Connect with Alison at her website, Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads or subscribe to her newsletter for exclusive free reads, contests and more. Website,  Blog, earlier blogFacebook,  
TwitterGoodreads, Pinterest

Buy Links (for all books)
Amazon Author PageLulu, SmashwordsBarnes & Noble, Kobo, iBooks

Alison will be appearing at the HNSA 2017 conference in the following panel:

A Rose by any Other Name: What's the Difference between Historical Romance and an Historical Love Story? 


Booksellers and publishers are called upon to categorise books for ease of selection. But aren’t historical romance and historical love stories the same? Do readers care about the pigeon holing of books into sub-genres? And if it’s necessary, what is required to establish the difference when writing a book? Elisabeth Storrs discusses these concepts with Isolde Martyn, Lisa Chaplin and Anna Campbell.

Alison is also appearing in our Melbourne HNSA Meet the Author event on Sunday 20 August 2.30-4.30pm at The Mail Exchange Hotel, 688 Burke Street, Melbourne, with Elise McCune, Gabrielle Gardner and Sylvia Karakaltsas. Bookings essential. More details can be found on the HNSA website. 

Historical romance writers might also be interested in the super session workshop below. A ticket to the workshop entitles the attendee an entry into a giveaway for a $100 Dymocks gift card. More details about our workshop programme are available at our website. Purchase of a day or weekend conference ticket is a pre-condition to booking.

Medieval, Regency and So Much More: Writing Historical Romance for the International Market

‘Historical romance’ covers a wide range of styles, with varying degrees of history and romance. Internationally published, award-winning authors Anne Gracie and Isolde Martyn will share their tips about writing historical romance, the craft of story-telling, the importance of research, and creating historical characters and atmosphere, as well as some ‘how-not-to’ advice to help authors reach an international market.

The HNSA Melbourne Conference

The HNSA 2017 Melbourne Conference is being held on 8-10 September 2017 at Swinburne University. This celebration of the historical fiction genre will showcase over 60 speakers discussing inspiration, writing craft, research, publishing pathways and personal histories in our weekend programme. Among the many acclaimed historical novelists participating are Kerry Greenwood, Kate Forsyth, Deborah Challinor, Libby Hathorn, Lucy Treloar, Sophie Masson, Sulari Gentill, Robert Gott and Arnold Zable. The HNSA’s speakers’ list is available on the HNSA website.

In addition to the two stream weekend programme, there will be ten craft based super sessions and two research masterclasses.You won’t want to miss our interactive sessions on armour and historical costumes either! Purchase a ticket and you will be entered in the draw to win a $100 Dymocks Gift Card.

Our First Pages Pitch Contest offers an opportunity for submissions to be read aloud to a panel of publishers. And we are delighted to announce the introduction of our inaugural HNSA Short Story Contest with a $500 prize!




Let’s make a noise about historical fiction!