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JAFF Writer-Reader Get Together 2019

A few weekends ago, Anna and I took a trip to nearby Virginia to meet some Jane Austen Fan Fiction (JAFF) authors, bloggers, and other readers. Anna and I were surprised (or at least I was) to be asked to speak about blogging and reviewing JAFF books and hosting their authors on blog tours.

I was glad we prepared ahead of time for the discussion, but the audience was wonderful and welcoming and full of questions. It was nice to share our thoughts on blogging and reviewing books for authors on an intimate stage with people we’ve come to know well virtually. It was also a pleasure to meet the incomparable Meredith from Austenesque Reviews.

I really hope I didn’t monopolize the conversation during the blogger panel, but I tend to just keep talking when I’m nervous. The best part was that we didn’t need to use a microphone. That set my mind a bit more at ease about speaking in front of a crowd.

We met so many great authors and learned a lot of inside knowledge about the Amazon self-publishing empire — as well as how much they actually take from authors royalties. It’s a shame that traditional publishing is not more welcoming and generous. I have a feeling they would make more money with JAFF authors if they thought about it hard enough. There is definitely a wide and loyal fan base for these kinds of books, as well as so much territory they have yet to explore.

If you’re a Jane Austen fan who loves fan fiction, this is they kind of gathering you don’t want to miss. And there are some “rumors” that there may be another one in 2020. Keep in the know, here.

As an aside, there was an informal reading of works in progress in the lounge after the Saturday “official” programming ended, and the Austen-inspired authors were kind enough to let me read some poems with them. It was a definite departure from the normal poetry crowd, and I hope they enjoyed the poems.

A big Thank You to Victoria Kincaid and Summer Hanford for all their work organizing the gathering, to Victoria Kincaid and Meredith for the great photos, and to everyone who came and respectfully and enthusiastically listened to my jabbering.