Diana Wynne Jones in 2019: Programme Watershed, Bristol, 9/10/11 August

Location: Watershed, Bristol.

FRIDAY 9 August

Watershed 1
Registration 12.30-2.30pm

Watershed 2
Katja: Diana Wynne Jones Craft Workshop (1.00, 1.30, 2.00)

Watershed 3
Catherine Butler: Welcome and Housekeeping

Farah Mendlesohn: Everything I learned about running a convention I learned from Deep Secret.”

Panel: The Pleasures and Challenges (Expected and Unexpected) of Teaching Diana Wynne Jones in the College Classroom

Donna White Martha Hixon Jackie Stallcup

DINNER (not provided)


SATURDAY 10 August

Watershed 3
Keynote: Isobel Armstrong Diana: My Sister’s Imagination

BREAK: 10.00-10.15 (Tea/coffee in Watershed 1) Parallel Sessions: Morning 10.15-12.00

Watershed 3 Nationality and Borders Chair: Stefan Ekman

Leah Koch-Michael

Dalemark and Denmark

Amber Hancock

Bounds, Homes and Riding away: An Exploration of Border Representation and National Identity within the Novels of Diana Wynne Jones

Nat Case

In Short, the Map is Useless: Cartography and Maps in Diana Wynne Jones’s Books and Stories

Watershed 2
Under the Influence Chair: Erin Horakova

David Clark

Diana Wynne Jones’s Contemporary Medievalism

Lotte Reinbold

Kit, Callette, and Kings: Diana Wynne Jones, the Medieval, and Where She Gets It From

Teya Rosenberg

Invisible and Visible Influence: Diana Wynne Jones, E. Nesbit, and Children Who Are Not Seen

Debbie Gascoyne

What did they teach her in those schools? Or “Damn it, I’m turning into C.S. Lewis!”

LUNCH 12.00-1.10 (Buffet in Watershed 1 and Waterside Corridor)


Parallel Sessions: Early Afternoon 1.10-2.25

Watershed 3
A Good Hiding?
Chair: Aishwarya Subramanian

Rebecca Vaccaro

“Do we know each other?”: Hidden Identities, Referential Characters, and Narrative Possibilities in Diana Wynne Jones’s Hexwood

Veronica Wagner

Concealment and Revelation: Reading Diana Wynne Jones’s Magic through Western Esoteric Traditions

Avi Naftali

Buried Alive: The Arthur/Merlin Motif in the Novels of Diana Wynne Jones

Parallel Sessions: Late Afternoon 2.30-3.45

Watershed 3
Power and the Corporations Chair: Catherine Butler

Akiko Yamazaki

A remedy against the corruption of power, or the meaning of the Goon’s small head

Victoria Byard

Archer’s Goon and the Needs of the BBC

Aneesh Barai

“We need to make the place pay somehow”: Magical Universities and Money in The Year of the Griffin

BREAK: 3.45-4.00 (Tea/coffee in Watershed 1)

Watershed 2

Families and How to Survive Them

Chair: Audrey Taylor

Madeline Meylor

The Tough Guide to Growing Up: Diana Wynne Jones’ Lessons on Coming of Age

Ulrike Pesold

Family in the works of Diana Wynne Jones

Ali Baker

Step-Parents in two novels by Diana Wynne Jones

Watershed 2
Wiles and Wisdom Chair: Gabriela Steinke

Caitlin Herington

Mini, Millie, Magid: Unconventional Women in the Twelve Related Worlds and other Universes of Diana Wynne Jones

Caroline Webb

“Drowning in Bleach”: Shame and Guilt in Diana Wynne Jones

Watershed 3
Keynote: Gili Bar-Hillel
“There’s Nothing Magic about Words”: Finding the Words to Translate Diana Wynne Jones

Beirut Mezze, 13a Small Street, BS1 1DE 7.30


SUNDAY 11 August

Parallel Sessions: Early Morning 9.00-10.15

Watershed 3

Built Environments

Chair: Amber Hancock

Kathleen Jennings

Howl’s Permeable Castle – home invasion and benevolent colonisation in the works of Diana Wynne Jones

Karina Coldrick

Jones and Quantum Foam

Catherine Olver

A Sense of the Setting: World-Building and the Five Senses in the Dalemark Quartet

Watershed 2 Into the Woods Chair: Nat Case

Julia Wang

Ideologies of Power in Hexwood

Gabriela Steinke

Fractured Humanity/Fragments of Humanity in Hexwood

Audrey Taylor

Time in Diana Wynne Jones

BREAK: 10-15-10.30 (Tea/coffee in Watershed 1) Parallel Sessions: Late Morning 10.30-11.45

Watershed 3

A Lucky Dip
Chair: Catherine Butler

Junko Nishimura

Diana Wynne Jones and Cats in her Books

Verena Rodriguez

The Wizard of a thousand faces: Pinning down the trickster wizard in the Howl Series

Matthew Knights

Diana Wynne Jones’s stories for younger readers: how do younger readers like them?

Watershed 2

Wizarding Worlds

Chair: Alison Baker

Aishwarya Subramanian

“I belong to Chrestomanci Castle”: National space and imperial crisis zones in the worlds of Chrestomanci

Erin Horáková,

Walled gardens, lonely attics and public schools: the Romance, the Canon and Constructions of Englishness in the Chrestomanci Series

Gili Bar-Hillel

It takes a wizard: Exploring the role of Wizards within their communities.

Watershed 3
Keynote: Robin Stevens Living a Charmed Life: How Diana Wynne Jones taught me to be a better author and a better person

Robin Stevens book signing and departure


Conference Dates: (9th) 10th and 11th August 2019.


Isobel Armstrong will be launching a new collection of Diana’s poetry.

Gili Bar-Hillel, long time fan and translator.

Robin Stevens, author of the Murder Most Unladylike Mysteries.

Code of Conduct: as we are a one off conference, we are using the code of conduct of the Historical Fictions Research Network which is of a similar size.

Draft Programme

We have reached our maximum numbers of 100 people and have decided to close sales.
For those who aren’t used to running conferences, the risk of expanding to another room is that if we didn’t then add at least 25 people, we could lose money. As this is a private (non university) conference we can’t take that risk.
Tickets may be transferred to a named person. The conference must be informed of any such transfers at least seven days prior to the conference. We reserve the right to refuse a transfer if the individual named has been excluded from any other conferences or conventions, or has any criminal convictions.
Young people between the ages of 12 and 18 must be associated with a named adult at the convention. If you do not know any other attendees but your young person has bought a ticket, please contact farah.sf@gmail.com to make arrangements for us to act in loco parentis.
If you know if someone who wishes to join a ticket waiting list, ask them to contact Farah directly. farah.sf@gmail.com
All the best
Farah and Cathy.