HNS Conference 2012

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HNS Conference 2012

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In the Shadow of 1066 – Competition now closed.

And the winner of $80 vouchers is: Larry Henson! (aka @Lobosolo)

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In the Shadow of 1066: Blogs, Resources and Competition

1066 is the most iconic date in English history, but few of us know much about the characters involved beyond the bare facts: Harold lost, William won, and the Norman dynasty had its beginning.

As this year’s anniversary draws close (14th october), we have drawn together some resources from around the internet to help those non-specialists amongst us to find out more. Click here for full-length television shows, author interviews, a terrific 1066 game (featuring all three major battles), some links to the primary source material, and details of the spectacular re-enactment event held over 2 days at Battle Abbey by English Heritage.

2011 has seen some fantastic books about 1066, and we have asked nine writers to take some time out to introduce to you some lesser-known protagonists in that watershed year.

The blogs will be posted on the following days, and we will link to them here as soon as they are posted. The blogs will also be collected on this site and posted together on Friday 14th – the anniversary of the Battle of Hastings.

Friday 7th Oct – Helen Hollick – author of Harold the King –  on Harold’s little-known Queen, Alditha.
Sat 8th Oct – Sarah Bower – author of Needle in the Blood –  on the Bayeux Tapestry and the Nazis.
Sun 9th Oct – Stewart Binns – author of Conquest – on the Great Survivor, Edgar the Aetheling.
Mon 10th Oct – Justin Hill – author of Shieldwall – on the Unknown Soldiers of 1066.
Tues 11th Oct – Carol McGrath – on Edith Swanneck, Harold’s mistress.
Tues 11th Oct – Tracy Borman – author of Matilda, Queen of the Conqueror – on Matilda’s Regency of Normandy.
Wed 12th Oct – James Wilde – author of Hereward – on Tostig Godwinson, Harold’s brother.
Thurs 13th Oct – Elizabeth Chadwick – author of The Conquest – on Edward of Salisbury, great grandfather of William Marshal
Friday 14th Oct – James Aitcheson – author of Sworn Sword – on the Conqueror’s right-hand-man, William fitz Osbern.


To win a £50 Amazon gift voucher* you must RETWEET the competition details at least once*, with the URL to this site and the hashtag #hnscomp. You must also correctly answer ALL 7 questions below (hint: reading the above blog pieces will help you find the answers). Send your answers by EMAIL ONLY to richard (at) historicalnovelsociety (dot) org. The closing date for entries is October 16th at midnight GMT. A winner will be selected at random from all correct entries, and will be named on this site on Monday 17th October, and the Amazon gift voucher will be sent by email to the winner on that day.

Question 1 (Friday 7th October): Which actress has been cast to play ‘Alditta’ in the movie 1066?

Question 2 (Saturday 8th October): Where was the Bayeux Tapestry displayed in November 1945?

Question 3 (Sunday 9th October): When and where did Edgar the Aetheling fight his final battle?

Question 4 (Monday 10th October): How do we know about the two un-named men of Tytherley who were killed at Hastings?

Question 5 (Tuesday 11th October): Which invader, according to Domesday, received the lands of Edith – ‘Eadgifu the Fair’?

Question 6 (Tuesday 11th October): Which daughter of William the Conquerer became a novice at La Trinité?

Question 7 (Wednesday 12th October): Where did King Edward hold his great council to consider the rebellion against Tostig?

Question 8 (Thursday 13th October): What office did Edward of Salisbury hold under the first three Norman kings?

Question 9 (Friday 14th October): Who described Fitz Osbern as ‘better than the very best princes’?

* the competition is open internationally, so if a voucher for is no good to the winner, an equivalent sum will be payable via Paypal.

* if you do not have a twitter account, you can also qualify by promoting this competition on your Facebook page or blog (post the URL in ‘Comments’), or by emailing entry details to your friends (cc me in with the email).

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Bernard Cornwell Competition now closed.


2 tickets to Ely Cathedral talk: Fiona Gilbert

2 tickets to Ely Cathedral talk: Kate Fletcher

2 tickets to Winchester Cathedral talk: Carole McGrath

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Bernard Cornwell ‘Death of Kings’ Giveaway Competition #histnovelcomp

The Historical Novel Society is working with Bernard Cornwell and his publishers HarperCollins to bring you the chance to win tickets to one of three events to hear him talk about his work or win a copy of his new book ‘Death of Kings’.

Bernard Cornwell needs no introduction.  He is the master of historical fiction, creator of Sharpe, the Starbuck Chronicles, the Warlord Chronicles about Arthur, The Grail Quest novels about the Hundred Years’ War and the Saxon stories.

‘Death of Kings’, the next book in the Saxon series, continues the story of Uhtred, this time through the tumultuous years which follow the death of Alfred the Great as two men struggle to inherit the crown of Wessex.

How to enter:

To enter you must tweet (or email your answer to: richard at historicalnovelsociety dot org) the answer to one of these questions using the hash tag #histnovelcomp:

For tickets to see Bernard at Ely Cathedral: What is the Saxon word for Ely?

For tickets to see Bernard at Winchester Cathedral: What is the Saxon word for Winchester?

For a hardback of Death of Kings: What is the first book in the Making of England series?

For an ebook of Death of Kings: What was the name of Alfred’s kingdom?

Your answering tweet MUST use the hashtag #histnovelcomp  in order to be counted.

The contest closes at noon GMT+1 (Noon British Summer Time) on Monday 26th September 2011.

Prize Event Details:

Win a pair of tickets to a Bernard Cornwell Book Tour event for the release of DEATH OF KINGS. We have six pairs of tickets for each event to give away:

MONDAY, 26 SEPTEMBER: ELY CATHEDRAL, Ely, Cambridgeshire. 7.30pm (doors open at 6.45pm)
Supported by Toppings Bookshop. T: 01353 645005.

TUESDAY, 27 SEPTEMBER; WINCHESTER CATHEDRAL, 9 The Close, Winchester. 7.45pm (doors open at 7.15pm)
Bernard Cornwell in conversation with historian and novelist James Holland at Winchester Cathedral, talking about Death of Kings, Cornwell’s new novel about King Alfred and a major part of England’s history.
Supported by Waterstone’s Winchester High Street – 97 High Street, Winchester SO23 9AH – Tel: 0843 290 8689

THURSDAY, 29 SEPTEMBER; Simpson Room, Waterstone’s, 203-206 Piccadilly, London W1J 9LE. 7pm.
Bernard Cornwell in conversation with Toby Clements, the Daily Telegraph Literary critic.  Tickets also available from Waterstones Piccadilly 020 7851 2419.

These are great events. Even if you don’t win, you can buy tickets through Waterstone’s. We look forward to seeing you there!

Prize Books

We also have 10 copies of ‘Death of Kings’ to give away. 5 hard copy and a further 5 e-books.

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