The rules of the Liebster Award are as follows :
1. Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog and link back to the blogger who presented this award to you.
2. Answer the 11 questions from the nominator, list 11 random facts about yourself and create 11 questions for your nominees.
3. Present the Liebster Blog Award to 11 blogs of 200 followers or less who you feel deserve to be noticed and leave a comment on their blog letting them know they have been chosen.
4. Copy and Paste the blog award on your blog.
My answers to Sarah's questions:
Which five historical figures would you invite to your fantasy dinner party? Predictably enough, Edward II, Isabella of France, Piers Gaveston, Hugh Despenser the Younger and Roger Mortimer.
Do you have any bad habits? How long have you got? :)
Facebook or Twitter? I vastly prefer Facebook because I can join history groups, and I find it much easier to interact with people there. I am on Twitter, but rarely if ever go there (my page is just an automatic feed from my Edward II page on FB). Cannot stand, or see the point of, the 140-character tweet limit, as I tend to be very wordy. ;)
Do you have a pet hate? Rude people, patronising people.
Has there been a book, song or movie that changed your life? How? Robert Goddard's novel Days Without Number, which I read in 2004. Although set in modern times, it's a partly historical mystery that frequently mentions Henry III's brother Richard of Cornwall (and the narrator is a descendant of the Paleologus emperors of Byzantium). This got me really interested in medieval history again, which I hadn't thought much about since getting my degrees in it some years before, and I started doing lots of reading on Richard of Cornwall and his family and bought the biography of him by Noel Denholm-Young, who also edited and translated the Vita Edwardi Secundi. This reading led me after a few weeks to Richard's great-nephew Edward II, and...the rest is history. :-) I had written an essay about Edward in my second year at university, but always felt that he was the medieval English king I knew least about, oddly enough. Goddard's novel led me to discover the great passion of my life.
Are there any historical fiction ‘crimes’ that really get on your nerves? Changing Edward III's paternity. Changing the paternity of other kings. Writing Edward II as a foot-stamping, shrieking, tantrum-throwing weakling. Turning real historical characters who the writer wants to be unsympathetic to readers into rapists and wife-beaters when there is no historical evidence for this whatsoever. Royal and noble women whining about how unfair it is that they're not allowed to marry for love and lamenting their status as 'pawns' of their scheming ambitious fathers.
What is your greatest achievement to date? Having an article published in the very prestigious English Historical Review in 2011. I still get a daft grin on my face whenever I think about it. ;)
Can you tell us about one of your goals for the future? If I could get another article accepted for publication, that would be a dream come true, or finish a novel. I wish I had more time to devote to writing, but am really busy teaching these days.
What is your favourite thing about blogging? I've met so many great people via the blog, a lot of whom have become good friends. I hardly know anyone in my 'real' life who's interested in medieval history, so finding a history 'community' has been wonderful.
And finally, have I annoyed you by nominating you for the Liebster? Haha, no, though I might struggle to think of eleven nominees when you've already nominated a lot of the blogs I would have as well, and think of eleven more questions. ;)
11 random facts about me
- I'm left-handed, very strongly left-handed, and left-footed. If I try to kick with my right foot when playing sport, I basically just miss the ball completely and fall over!
- I wrote my MA dissertation about a fifteenth-century manuscript of a poem called 'The Siege of Troy' by John Lydgate, and got to spend hours every day sitting with the manuscript in the John Rylands library in Manchester. Bliss. An article based on the dissertation was published in the Bulletin of the John Rylands library.
- I'm an only child. And a spoilt brat. :)
- I live right in the middle of a city and love it. It's a perfect combination of a quiet residential street that's mere minutes' walk away from absolutely everything.
- My great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather John Winks drowned in the river Trent on 23 December 1760, in a ferry-boat accident.
- My favourite colour is pink. It's a rare day that I don't wear something in this colour. I have two thick winter coats that are different shades of bright pink and brighten up those dull cold winter days for me.
- I was lucky enough to grow up in the Lake District, which was indescribably wonderful.
- My favourite period of history after the early fourteenth century is the eleventh century. There are few periods of history I wouldn't gladly read about, though, and I love exploring eras and countries I'm not familiar with in historical fiction and non-fiction.
- I love listening to 80s pop and indie music.
- My five favourite words in the English language are: swashbuckling; sabre-rattling; flabbergasted; gobsmacked; serendipity.
What's your favourite novel and what do you love about it?
Do you have any pet peeves in historical fiction?
What are you most proud of?
Your favourite and least favourite people in history? (As few or as many as you like!)
The country, city or other place you'd most like to visit?
Which five people would you invite to your fantasy dinner party?
Facebook or Twitter or neither?
What's one of your goals for the future?
What's your favourite season?
Dogs or cats or neither?
What's your favourite hobby?
I give the following blogs a Liebster Blog Award, in alphabetical order:
Carla Nayland Historical Fiction
Henry the Young King
Lady Despenser's Scribery
Plantagenet Dynasty: Genealogy & History
Robert M. Chapple, Archaeologist
Tanzanite's Castle Full of Books