This weekend, time zones are friendly to Janeites with an appetite for online convening. On paper, it looks like you’d have to choose how to spend your Saturday: at either Austen Con, a one-day festival sponsored by a theater company in Melbourne, Australia, or “Pride, Prejudice and Zoom,” a one-day festival sponsored by the public library in Glendale, Arizona.
But that’s the thing about time zones: Saturday in Australia is Friday in Arizona, and so the two events actually don’t overlap. Which is lucky for me, since I’m on the panel that kicks off the Arizona festival, at noon Mountain time on Saturday (aka the small hours of Sunday morning in Australia).
My panel, “Jane, Universally Acknowledged: Austen Fandom in the 21st Century,” should be a lot of fun: I’ll be appearing along with Holly Luetkenhaus and Zoe Weinstein, co-authors of the 2019 book Austentatious: The Evolving World of Jane Austen Fans. Austen scholar Devoney Looser, a professor of English at Arizona State University, will moderate.
The festival includes both live and recorded discussions of fandom, fanfic, and an assortment of other topics at the intersection of Austen and pop culture. Everything is free, but to get links for the live events, you have to preregister.
Once you’ve recovered from jet lag after the Australian event, please drop in!