Imagining the Past: with Jackie French

Our first podcast interview for 2019 features one of Australia’s favourite authors, and our guest of honour at this year’s conference – the incomparable Jackie French.

Jackie has written over 200 books for readers of all ages, and many of them are historical fiction. She has sold millions of copies and won awards all over the world. Her honours include the Order of Australia and Senior Australian of the Year, and from 2014 to 2015 she was the Australian Children’s Laureate.

Our podcast host, Kelly Gardiner, spoke to Jackie on the line from her home in the Araluen Valley.


We are delighted to present Jackie in conversation at the Conference in October, where she will chat with Jackie Ballantyne to reveal insights into her novels, her writing processes, her approach to history, and other aspects of her impressive career.

Jackie French

Our podcast, Imagining the Past, features interviews with writers of historical fiction from New Zealand and Australia.

You can subscribe to it in your favourite podcast app, listen to episodes on our blog, or follow us on Audioboom.

The 2019 series is supported by La Trobe University and features conference guests chatting with host Kelly Gardiner about historical fiction, their writing practice, and reading.

Once again, historical fiction writers and readers can gather for a three stream program on the weekend of 26-27 October including our extended Academic stream on Sunday 27 October. This time there’s also a Craft & Publishing program on Friday 25 October with craft workshops, masterclasses and manuscript assessments with top class tutors. Our Guest of Honour is Jackie French. Keynote speaker Paula Morris will address our theme: History Repeats.

Among the 60 acclaimed speakers are patrons Kate Forsyth and Sophie Masson, Catherine Jinks, Ali Alizadeh, Lucy Treloar, Pamela Hart, Nicole Alexander, Jane Caro, Alison Goodman, Kelly Gardiner, Michelle Aung Thin, Meg Keneally, Majella Cullinane and so many more.

Enjoy a delicious meal at our conference dinner on Saturday 26 October where Anna Campbell will entertain us. You’ll also hear who’s won this year’s ARA HNSA Short Story Contest with a $500 prize, and the HNSA Colleen McCullough Residency.

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