21 November 2011 (London, UK) - The conference began at 5:00 on Thursday, 17 November 2011 with registration during which coffee and tea were served.
Dana Celeste Robinson, Evan Ostryzniuk and Katherine Smith arrived at the Institute of Historical Research at 4pm to set up the Knox Robinson Publishing stand. There were two publishers taking part in the publishers' fair, Knox Robinson and Palgrave MacMillan.
Registration was followed by an hour long talk during which Hilary Mantel discussed her Man Booker Prize winning 2009 novel Wolf Hall. She addressed the controversy surrounding historical fiction and her writing process. She also stressed the importance of ensuring that the historical record is followed as closely as possible even when writing fiction.
A reception followed.
Friday began with a keynote address by Alison Weir in which she discussed the delicate balance required for historians to maintain academic credibility when writing both academic works and novels.
Alison Weir's talk was followed by a panel discussion on the popularity of historical fiction. Taking part in the panel were Elizabeth Chadwick (author), Justin Champion (academic professor, Royal Holloway, University of London), Tracey Loughran (University of Cardiff), and Peter Straus (literary agent, Rogers, Coleridge and White),
The afternoon continued with various panels and discussions with noted authors and academics.
We all had a wonderful time and would like to thank the organisers, Jane Winter and Manjeet Sambi at the Institute of Historical Research.