I Almost Lost My Shit in Austenland 

Take it from me: You haven’t known true awkwardness until you’ve completely botched an English country dance at a masquerade ball at a Jane Austen Festival, disrupting the steps of Regency costume-clad people on both sides, finding yourself suddenly consumed with sympathy for the odious Mr. Collins of Pride and… »9/21/15 1:18pm9/21/15 1:18pm

How Jane Austen Became Such a Tourist Trap

For a woman who spent much of her life pinched for pennies, Jane Austen sure makes a handy marketing tool today. For example, on my way into a Jane Austen Festival dance workshop at the local Guildhall (another soaring, cake-like interior), I was handed a flyer for a “Georgian Lunch Menu,” offering 20 percent off for… »9/19/15 2:15pm9/19/15 2:15pm

How Much Jane Austen Is Too Much Jane Austen? 

Greetings from Bath, England, where I’m currently attending the fifteenth annual Jane Austen Festival, on the two-hundredth-year anniversary of both the publication of Emma and the Battle of Waterloo, in an attempt to probe the outer limits of my own deep fondness for Austen’s oeuvre. Yes, I am dressing up. »9/14/15 12:30pm9/14/15 12:30pm

New Letters from Jane Austen's Family Sure to Thrill Austen Obsessives

A California library has acquired a cache of letters from Jane Austen's mother's family. No, none of the letters was written by Austen. None of the letters even mentions by Austen by name. But Jane Austen is to historical documents as Fifty Shades of Grey is to hotel packages—drop her name and suddenly everybody's… »2/02/15 3:30pm2/02/15 3:30pm

A Virtual World for Jane Austen Fans Just Raised $100K on Kickstarter

Jane Austen's long dead, but that doesn't keep her most obsessive fans from supporting an entire cottage industry around her works. But this is taking it to a new level: Via Polygon, a Kickstarter campaign has just raised $109,563 to fund the creation of Ever, Jane, a massively multiplayer online game dedicated to the… »12/05/13 12:10pm12/05/13 12:10pm