Academics and researchers from across Australia will present papers on a range of topics responding to the theme Legacies of Publishing. Convened by Aaron Mannion and Dr Millicent Weber.


Tickets to the 2017 conference are available now.

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Keynote Speaker

Associate Professor Katherine Bode‘Large, Vigorous and Thriving’: Legacies and Futures of Australian Publishing


This lecture sits at the intersection of two forms of publishing: one endemic to the nineteenth century, the other to the twenty-first. It explores the newspapers that were the main publishers of fiction in the Australian colonies using the largest mass-digitised collection of historical newspapers internationally, the National Library of Australia’s Trove database. The almost 17,000 works of fiction discovered in this analysis support a new genealogy of fiction publishing in Australia: where its origins and defining features lie not in the growth in independent local publishing in the 1970s, or even in George Robertson’s activities in the nineteenth century, but in a “large, vigorous and thriving” colonial press.

Newsprint might seem a world away from contemporary Australian publishing, whether in its multinational, small independent, or self-published forms. To the contrary, I show that Australian fiction publishing has from its origins been extensive and active, enmeshed in globalised cultural and economic networks, and distinctively local, adaptive and independent. As well as offering new insights into the history of Australian publishing, the approach underpinning this paper (large-scale mining of the mass-digitised archive) presents opportunities to reflect on the future of publishing studies and on the contemporary fiction publishing that can occur at the intersection of nineteenth and twenty-first century media.


Katherine Bode is associate professor of literary and textual studies at the Australian National University. Her recent publications include Reading by Numbers (2012) and the coedited collection Advancing Digital Humanities (2014). Her latest book is called A World of Fiction, and is due out in 2018 with Michigan University Press.

Thursday 16 November 2017

  • 8:15am

    • Performance SpaceCoffee, tea, registration

  • 8:45am

    • Performance SpaceWelcome

  • 9:00am

    • Performance SpacePublishing Legacies and Futures

      Kim Wilkins, ‘Fantasy Fiction and Australian Small Press Publishing’

      Nathan Hollier, ‘The Golden Age of Book Publishing’

      Per Henningsgaard ‘“The Sales Potential Is Vast”: Independently Published Australian Books and the North American Marketplace’

    • Workshop SpaceNext Generation Publishing

      Heather Blakey, ‘Spatial Awareness: Kinetic Storytelling and Community Building in the Games Industry’

      Jerath Head, ‘What We Talk about When We Talk about Millennials’

      Laurel Cohn, ‘The Picture Book Diet: What Are We Feeding Our Children When We Read Them a Book?’

  • 10:30am

    • Morning Tea

  • 11:00am

    • Performance SpaceReviewing in Review

      Alexandra Dane, ‘Independent Publishers and Book Reviews in the Age and the Australian, 1990-2015’

      Brigid Magner and Emily Potter, ‘Wheat, Dust & Elbow-Grease: Shared Reading in the Mallee’

      Melinda Harvey and Julieanne Lamond, ‘Prizewinners in Australian Book Reviewing as a Field, 1985 and 2013-2016’

    • Workshop SpaceStandards and Adaptability

      Aaron Mannion, ‘Grattan Street Press: Publishing and Pedagogy’

      Jocelyn Hargrave, ‘On the Road to the Standardisation of the Printed Page: The Legacies of John Degotardi and Benjamin Fryer’

      Khyiah Angel, ‘Fluid and Adaptive Reading Requires Fluid and Adaptive Publishing’

  • 12:45pm

    • Lunch

  • 1:45pm

    • Performance SpaceKeynote: Katherine Bode

      ‘Large, Vigorous and Thriving’: Legacies and Futures of Australian Publishing

  • 2:45pm

    • Performance SpaceLGBTQIA and Feminist Publishing

      Millicent Weber, ‘Scholarly Feminist Presses: Germaine Greer and Stump Cross Books’

      Katie Hansord, ‘An Electric Dream of Monday’: Punk, Publication, and Innovation in 1980s and 90s Australian Lesbian Poetry’

      Ika Willis and Michael Earp, ‘Thirty Years of LGBTQIA Young Adult Publishing in Australia: A Forgotten Legacy’

    • Workshop SpaceCase Studies in Publishing Praxis

      Megan Patty, ‘New Models of Museum Publishing’

      Nick Earls, ‘The Novella in the Twenty-first Century: The Wisdom Tree Experiment’

      Ronnie Scott, Rose Michael, Tracy O’Shaughnessy, ‘Cultural Entrepreneurs and Apprenticeships: Examining Legacy/Effects Through Three Case Studies – Arcade Publications (2007–2012), the Lifted Brow (Est. 2007), the Bowen Street Press (Est. 2016)’

  • 4:15pm

    • Afternoon Tea

  • 4:45pm

    • Performance SpaceTastemaking and Post-Digital Literary Culture

      Emmett Stinson, ‘Mediating Difficult Literature: The Online Reception of Jack Cox’s Dodge Rose’

      Beth Driscoll, ‘Literary Blogs as Tastemakers: Complicating the Professional/Amateur Divide’

      Mark Davis, ‘The Clash of Networks: Post-digital Literary Cultures and Their Anxieties’

  • 6:00pm

    • Performance SpaceBook Launch: Publishing Means Business: Australian Perspectives

      Join us for free drinks, nibbles and conversations as we launch Publishing Means Business: Australian Perspectives edited by Aaron Mannion, Millicent Weber and Katherine Day. The book will be launch by Beth Driscoll, Senior Lecturer, University of Melbourne.

      More info

  • Tomorrow