That's a wrap!
Welcome to the twenty sixth episode of the What the Austen? podcast! I'm your host Izzy, and I am joined by my friend and fellow Janeite Caily Bridgeland. To say goodbye to the 2022 podcast year we are reflecting back on all the episodes that have come out, meeting each other in person and life in general.
It has been a tough year at times dealing with a mixture of grief and burnout, but it's also been an exciting year making loads of new friends in the Austen community and the podcast has grown massively.
I want to say a massive thank you to all the guests who have been on this year, you really do help to make this podcast a reality and I loved recording with each of you!
Caily Bridgeland @half_agony_half_hope
Yolanda and Jillian @thepemberley | The Pemberley Podcast
Thank you for all your love and support, you help to keep the podcast going. I can't wait to return in 2023 with a whole set of new guests and new content. Please subscribe and rate the podcast, it really does help to grow the community.
Have a wonderful December break and I will see you In the New Year!
Mentioned in the ep:
Mr Fogg’s Cocktail chain
Jane Austen Funko Pop
@MarshaLaurenceart on Instagram and Marsha’s shop
Eleanor's shop Haus of Bennet
This podcast is about Janeites coming together, discussing Jane Austen's work, and having a few laughs along the way.
We really enjoyed making this episode and we hope you like it!
Please follow and subscribe to keep up with all the upcoming episodes.
Where can you find Caily?
Episode 2: A defence of Colonel Brandon from Sense and Sensibility
Episode 5: Discussing Jane Austen's most awkward characters #AwkAustenAug
Episode 7: Jane Austen Villain off 2021 | Wickham v Willoughby with Caily and Ellis
Episode 9: The power of the letter in Jane Austen's work
Episode 12 & 13: Placing Austen's Heroines into Harry Potter Houses.
Episode 22: Villain 2022 | Caroline Bingley v Isabella Thorpe
Izzy Meakin 00:18
Hi, Janeites and welcome to episode 26 of the what the Austen podcast. This will be the last episode of 2022. been it's been a time guys, and Caily's back to join me as we just talked about basically everything that's happened this year, what episodes have come out and just wrap things up before we move into a new year with a whole set of new episodes and new guests. So welcome back, Caily. So glad to have you with me. As always,
thank you so much for having me back again. And I this is really special to be on this final episode where we can reflect on all of the amazing ups and downs of this year and just talk about all of the incredible episodes you've recorded.
Izzy Meakin 01:04
I know I feel like you're on so much now that I need to stop saying welcome back. And I'm just like Haley's here. I know. And I'm always like by surprise. Thanks for having me again.
Izzy Meakin 01:13
Even though obviously, you guys hear Caily on specific episodes, it honestly goes. So beyond that, like Caily is literally my rock outside of the podcast like Eddie Christ, like emotionally? Do you go help me with this? Or I just read this to me, I'd run all of my ideas by you, basically, anything to do with the podcast? And like, I've had this idea, what do you think? And we just chatted about it, don't worry. Yeah. And it's just so amazing. When I think about it that you you were really my rock during COVID To like, both of us started our accounts, same time during COVID. And I just, we would talk every single day. And we've talked about Austen. And that's kind of what kept me going. And one thing that I think is hysterical is you know, we started our friendship via Instagram DM each other and then have recorded these episodes on zoom in two different countries. But then when we actually met up in the same country, a bunch of my friends were like, Oh, are you going to spend the whole time recording episodes together and you can sit right next to each other? I was like, Nah, we're gonna we're gonna explore London together. And so we've only ever recorded these episodes, when we're in different countries, which just makes me laugh. I know. It's actually mad, isn't it? Nick's actually said that to me, the past has always been like, Oh, would you like record? You know, together in person. I'm like, if we get the opportunity to see each other in person, like we so just want to do other stuff and go and drink cocktails. I mean, don't get us wrong. We still talk Austen, but yeah, it was so much fun. When we met in London. It wasn't it so in that this summer, I can't recall what month it was that you came over. It was July. Yeah, we got to Cheeky Nando's, my first Cheeky Nando's. Gosh, I hear my American accent when I say.
And then. And then Mr. Foggs. And we did talk a lot about Austen. But certainly we're not recording an episode then. Which is probably good. Yeah, no, absolutely. And it Mr. Foggs. Guys, if you live close to London or in London, I really recommend going to them. So these are like a chain of cocktail houses. The whole chain is called Mr. Foggs. I'm pretty sure that just in London, but I don't know for sure. And there's definitely a lot in London. So there's like Mr. Foggs tavern, and Mr. Foggs residents, the gin Palace Society of exploration, the secret gardens, I have been to a few of them. And they're really cool. So
Izzy Meakin 03:36
I can't even remember which one we went to was the camera.
I promise you guys, we only had one or two cocktails or like we can't even remember where we were.
But it had antique library vibes, which is my dream aesthetic. So that was so much fun. When we got to meet in person. It was just so weird. It was like surreal, because we have spent like, at that point, what was it like? Two years maybe chat in two years. And I was like, this is one of my closest friends. And then I remember walking to meet you in front of the bookshop. And I was like, Oh my gosh, this is this is the first time we're meeting face to face. You kind of humbling a little bit because you'd like oh
I'm gonna wear this really cute outfit, and we're gonna have a wonderful Girl's Day. And yeah, well, I guess I'm telling this story on your podcast. Here we go. The first day I landed in England, we started off in the Cotswolds and I fell into a cattle grid in my first hour and I bruised the entire left half of my leg all the way down my calf. It was it was pretty horrid looking. And it kind of hurts.
Waiting to meet me. Like yeah, I'm a little older than you but I think you didn't expect to see someone hobbling down the street as I can't walk. I was definitely one
Izzy Meakin 05:00
was bruises I've ever seen in my life. It was pretty horrific. I genuinely couldn't believe it when you told me this story. Yeah, I was trying to hide the bruise most of the trip, but I was like, I was committed, I had this vision of wearing this white dress on the day that we hang out. And we're gonna have Austen vibes. And so yeah, she's full. She's, she's lost, she saw the full bruise. And it was it was not cute, but it is healed, and I can walk properly again.
Izzy Meakin 05:27
What's hilarious about this, it took me a while to kind of ask about it, but I wasn't sure if you will learn a lot of pain or you had difficulties with your leg or something. It was just something that never came up in conversation between us. And so I just didn't really know how to bring it up. But I knew that we had a lot of walking planned into the day and so I just wanted to kind of kind of ask him, you were gonna be okay to do that.
Izzy Meakin 05:50
And then obviously, he told me the story and everything and obviously growing up in the UK, like I'm used to Castle grids. Like they're kind of everywhere, because I grew up in the countryside as well. But
Izzy Meakin 05:59
honestly, I think that's just something that never occurred to me like small falling down a castle grid, but also is actually terrifying to think of. Because you know, it I mean, obviously, you know, incredibly painful to get stuck in a castle grins. So, yeah, that was the first day we met. Well, I didn't really I didn't realise that I was walking that way. And then finally, you kind of put a little like, very public comment out there about it. And I was like, Oh my gosh,
this is not how I normally walk. Anyway, both of us have tears in our eyes right now. So shambling, but it was a very fun day.
Izzy Meakin 06:40
It was it was so good. So that was in the summer time. But if we go all the way back to the start of the year, so this is episode starting in January, and it was you and I on the podcast, and we did the power of the letter. And I just want to say I'm so proud of this episode. I was too i.
So one of the things I really love about your podcast is the level of versatility. You know, sometimes, like when we did the awkward Austen characters, or the sorting hat, or Disney Princess comparisons, like that is such a fun loving vibe. And I love that and I love to be able to laugh on episodes, but then it's also so fun to do the episodes where you do the literary Deep Dive. And like I was an English major. So I'm such a literature nerd. And so it was so interesting and fun to look at all of the different letters and just how a see how letters move the plot forward and understand the social context of letters at the time and in describing someone's character and bringing people together in the process of listening to letters. So I agree I was really proud of of that one. And I thought yeah, we it was it was just a lot of fun. And it was very fun to to focus on letters that I hadn't really focused on as much in the past like the the letter from Mrs. Gardiner. Oh
Izzy Meakin 08:05
my gosh, I was shocked. I was shocked by the conversation. We got into with that because I was like, Wow, this this is like, this is seriously deep. This entire episode could have been my dissertation, if I'd written about letters and not another aspect of Jane Austen. But yeah, that was so good. I was like, Well, we are we are academics, we're going deep.
Yes, because, you know, it just makes sense to focus on certain letters over others, especially obviously, the Wentworth letter, the letter from Mr. Darcy. And so sometimes, other phenomenal letters get a little bit taken for granted or we pass over them. But yeah, just focusing on those letters. We hadn't maybe thought about in a while.
Izzy Meakin 08:48
Yeah, I totally agree. And I feel like your mom said to you as well that she felt that was like one of our best FSA that we've done together.
Oh, first serve. My mom loves the literary Deep Dive. And I think you know, Martha, and Ellis really both bring a lot to that too, with the historical context.
Izzy Meakin 09:06
Yes, I absolutely agree. Both of them have fantastic knowledge sets when it comes to kind of time specific, historical context. So that's not really my area, like I do have bets and I do like reading about it and things but yeah, I definitely, you know, I didn't I didn't study history past past sixth form. And I don't think I ever studied Regency England. So it's kind of basically what I've read in my spare time. But like we said in the villain off episode, I was doing her PhD and obviously has a degree and a master's in history. And she always like comes like, let me tell you, because back in the day, this is what was going on. And I'm just like, oh my god, that's so good. And Martha has fantastic just all around knowledge of the time period. So yeah, definitely. They both bring that to the table. And that's so valuable.
I know. It's so helpful to have that context even, you know, I'm thinking about the Who Wants to Be a Millionaire episode with Charlie too. And it was so helpful to understand how financial status came into play. Like I it was really helpful to me when you both explained the entailment process, because I thought, wait a minute, why do the minute sisters not get to keep their house but Lady Catherine de Burgh, her estate isn't entailed away. So that was so helpful to understand that contract
Izzy Meakin 10:30
literally, sometimes when I'm researching things for the episodes, I, I just learned so much. Like I always come to this with new thoughts, ideas, and I've just discovered so much more than what I knew previously. Like, I don't just come with it with the knowledge that I already have, like I do try and make the effort to go and research around the topic itself. And that he wants to be a millionaire episode was such a good example of that. It was also one of the episodes that I had in like my mind's eye. So there's still episodes that I just see, before they happen. And I'm just like, This is what I envision is going to be called Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, and it's gonna be about like money on Janus and men. And I just totally wanted Charlie to do that episode with me. And let me Don't get me wrong. I think I probably told you this. I was so nervous to ask him I was honestly really nervous, even though I chatted with him a bit and everything. And, you know, I thought we were friends and everything. You know, Charlie has a pretty big Bookstagram following. You know, I've been following him for ages and loving his content. And he has like loads of people following him. And he's, like, really popular in the Bookstagram community, understandably. So I think I just had a little bit of impostor syndrome. And I was like, Oh, my gosh, you know, we're friends. But I'm like, Oh, are we good enough friends that he's not going to feel weird if I ask him to come on the podcast and everything. And, you know, we had such a great time. We still chat now. And you know, Charlie's definitely going to be on next year again, cuz I just love I just love that episode. It was so much fun to make. But I think it's saying that as well. There's, there's another element of you know, me asking guests on and that is not that there's like a responsibility. It's all because I never put pressure on guests to research around the topic, or even reread the book that we're covering, because most people who I ask on they're already like established Geno's, they already have read the books, or they want to read the book. And so that's why they, you know, they wanted to do the topic. But I feel like there is a certain amount of expectation that you're interested in the topic enough that you can hold the conversation about it. And then it's enjoyable, because I mean, the last thing you want to do is come on a podcast, and it'd be like painful, especially for how long I record for because obviously, I talk to you much clearly. But I think you know, you don't want to have def by podcast.
Totally. I see what you're saying about that. It's, you know, this expectation for a certain level of knowledge. And anyone who agrees to do it, I'm sure thinks that it's an honour and is excited about Austen. And that's interesting. You say that about him? Because I know he has a big following and everything but I thought your banter and your wit back and forth was really fun to listen to on that episode. Like That episode was really informative. But it also had that playfulness and fun that I think you're so good at having on your episodes.
Izzy Meakin 13:18
Oh my gosh, I just got on with Charlie so well, and obviously, we're still friends now we continue to chat and everything and yeah, he's such a genuine like authentic person and honestly just vibe to him entirely. And he's just got such great Austen knowledge. I mean, books in general, if you follow like you probably do. And Charlie's account the book boy, he just is obviously an avid reader. But his knowledge of Austen already was so good. So that was such a great episode to do. And like you said, like learning about the the ins and outs of the financials at that time was so fascinating. I didn't know until I started research and excited for the same thing. I was like, why is it that some people get houses and money and others don't? It didn't in some are females somehow. And I was like, I don't understand how this works. So it was really good to learn more about that.
I completely agree. And I would say that the two two things that blew my mind with that episode was first. I did not realise dumb Mr. Rushworth was richer than Mr. Darcy. And so when you guys were talking about the fact that financially, he was the biggest catch of all, but we always think of Mr. Darcy as being you know, the great rich man. So anyway, that blew my
Izzy Meakin 14:31
mind. And also I think that episode was get to you to kind of wash away some misconceptions that are out there because I feel like there's articles and stuff that state certain people are richer than they actually are. I remember reading an article a while back that stated that like Wentworth was the richest hero, and obviously once I started to like research I found out that wasn't the case. It just like it was good to actually look at it myself so that I could work work it out if that makes sense as opposed to taking because I think people some people just write the articles and you know, I will, I don't seem that then necessarily write them to misconstrued the truth. But I think a lot of people who write kind of essays on Austen, I've just been in the academic world in general, sometimes you sway narratives so that it fits whatever argument you're trying to come up. I mean, I know that I did that with some of my stuff. And like, obviously, if I was going to write an essay on funny price, we all know she'd be some sort of like crazy, yes, evil person go around.
That's one of my favourite. That's one of my favourite dialogues we've ever gotten into is talking about how much you hate family praise.
Izzy Meakin 15:40
Like myself, like how much animosity I was holding
this before, but you get this specific expression on your face when you talk about a fanny and it is so intense, like, oh, I cannot wait. And he just like scared, because I'm just like, hey, just hang on a second. This is let me just get into this. I love it so much. But ya know, that's that's such a good point is sometimes things can get skewed when you're making an argument. So it was really helpful for you and Charlie to just actually explain what every each character's financial status was. Yeah,
Izzy Meakin 16:13
it kind of transpired that it works, how kind of exactly how I wanted it to so I was really happy with that. And before I got to that one, I had a really fun episode with Martha where we talked about Bridgeton. Yes,
Martha, just another person who clearly has so much knowledge. And yeah, I just love that she did her dissertation on Jane Austen. And it was really, I really appreciated the way that you talked about how it's important to have to have an episode that honours the Regency period, or at least Regency attire, and honours a diversity of casting of characters like that has been such a long time coming. And when you two were talking about that, I just thought that that was such an important thing to name. And also having something where female sexuality and pleasure is honoured, because that historically has not been the case. So those two things really stood out to me from that episode.
Izzy Meakin 17:14
Yeah, absolutely. It was really good. Like the fact like you said, talking about Bridgeton men that we could open the doors to some of the conversations. And I feel like I'm hoping for Austen adaptations coming forward, that they take inspiration for what Bridgeton showed, and kind of bring that into their casting. And what's really interesting is next year, I have the new podcaster, I will have an episode coming out where I kind of focus more on sex and sexuality in Regency England. So that'll be really fun. And I feel like a way to dive into that topic a lot more. I'm super fascinating. Like, I've already started researching it. And it's really, really interesting. So our Yeah, I'm really looking forward to, to doing that.
So I loved I loved that bridgerton Did did highly female pleasure and sexuality. And also I am torn with loving how that's presented for bridgerton. But then also in Jane Austen adaptations, I still really love that sex isn't a major component in it. And I actually think that it think it makes it sexier and that there's more sexual tension built, when the most romantic part or most sexual part is like Mr. Darcy's hand, right, like Mr. Darcy's hand flex in the 2005 version. And I know that's not actually in the book. But there is something very sultry and sexy to me about having the sexual tension build, and not actually having it be sexy in in a novel.
Izzy Meakin 18:40
Oh, yeah, no, I totally, I when you're present feel the same way. A lot of the time, you don't need to have sex scenes, or the explicit sex scenes that are kind of displayed in bridgerton, to have a sort of sensuality. And I think Austen adaptations do a good job of toeing the line there. Because I know Austen is all about love with lust, but with an obvious all consuming attraction between the heroine and hero. So although the episode in the new year, we'll be looking at whether or not sex does fit into Austen and examples of where people have tried to incorporate it. So but I do love that they explored that in Richmond and continue to explore it in Bridgeton. Because I think it's super interesting like Regency England and just sex in general. And people exploring their sexuality was just very open at that time. It's like really, it's really interesting topic. Yes,
that's exactly it. I completely agree. I'm torn between this. Another example is just when Lizzie and I guess Jennifer l played Lizzie in the 1995 adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, Lizzie and Colin Firth, just lovingly looking at each other while georgiana's playing the piano. And I feel like some of those sexually tense moments are so powerful because there aren't sex scenes, but then also On the other hand, just like you said, I do like that sex scenes and women's sexuality is explored in an adaptation in the Regency area. So I think we're both saying the same thing.
Izzy Meakin 20:11
I'm female pleasure as well, I find it so important. And I was really badly done a lot of things. So that was quite an older guy. Although, obviously, guys, there are issues with some of the scenes in Bridgetown. But obviously they've taken that from the book, because even though they did change a couple of bits, they did take, obviously, like the rape scene and everything from the book, and that was real dodgy, but there was still some positives in terms of, you know, that the sexy side of it. So yeah, that was like such a fun episode to do and a little bit different to the usual content, even though it was Regency, it was still nice to just kind of cover something else. And obviously something that's been widely spoken about in the Jane Austen community as well. So it was fun to kind of look into that for an episode.
And you and Martha did such a great job of talking about the discrepancy between the rape scene which was so not okay and taken from the first book, and then other sex scenes that were done really well, that did highlight female pleasure. And yeah, you both did a great job, just explaining that.
Izzy Meakin 21:10
And then, from that, we started moving into spring, and you were back on the podcast again, to do the Harry Potter episodes.
Sorry, I'm cackling because that was just so fun to do. And that's the other kind of episodes we do that are so fun, where we can giggle a little bit more. And it's just fun to take characters that we love from Jane Austen, and then compare them to other characters from other stories that we love. And it was just, it was very funny, because when we did the Sorting Hat episode, we'd be on we'd both be on the same page with certain characters, you know, how we talked about there was a main house and then a secondary house. And we'd usually be pretty close. And then there were a few characters where we completely disagreed. But which is so funny, but my mom was, when she said she was listening to it, she was like, You both need to disagree more strongly with one another. And I was like, Wow, mom, okay, drama, you want us to fill out a fight on these episodes. But it's funny, I think the reason that happens is even when we disagree, we really respect the other person's perspective. And we can see where the other person's coming from.
Izzy Meakin 22:24
Yeah, I think it comes from a place that we both were both super fascinated by like literary worlds, that we can be like, intrigued by somebody else's perspective on it, even if it's entirely different to my own. And that's something that I really love about having the podcast, but also a community that goes along with a podcast, because I literally have listeners, you will come to me and they'll be like, I totally disagree. I think there's not just like, tell me, tell me how you disagree. Tell me your thoughts, I want to know. And it's fascinating. And it makes me think about things in a different way. Because I think everybody who reads Jane Austen or just any literature in general, as you grow, you take different things from it. And as you talk to different people, you're going to develop your own thought processes on things. So I think that's the beautiful thing. And that's why I love like chasin zoom, because sometimes you'll sway me and I'll be like, Oh my gosh, yeah, I totally see where you're coming from with this. I feel like both of us are open to new ideas and thoughts, which I think is why obviously, we were such good friends, but also why it makes it so easy for us to record episodes together.
Yeah, that's what I loved about that episode, too, is we did authentically change each other's minds on on certain characters. Although there's one thing I have to say now that we've sat with it for a long time. There's one character where I can't agree with you. I can't agree with you on where you poster and I got we got to fight through it now. Marianne as slithering I can't get on board with that. Now that I've sat with it in every other perspective. I totally can at least wrap my mind around.
Izzy Meakin 23:59
Oh my gosh, okay. Okay. What was her? What did we put for her primary house? Was it Gryffindor Ravenclaw. We did. I want to say
I think we did Gryphon door and we were fighting over whether Raven claw was secondary. I think I said Ravenclaw was secondary.
Izzy Meakin 24:19
And I said about the fact that I thought that maybe her love of all things intellectual may have been more of a friend as opposed to authentic. And that's why I went with Slitherine and says, Hmm, yeah,
and I think the point that I did totally see that you made was when she kind of would be a little bit snobby, looking down on Miss Hastings or other you know, other people who frankly were annoying and they're gossiping about her and will it be
Izzy Meakin 24:49
anything handled Brendan and his age like she goes through like a whole rant where she's like he can't remarry? Because he's old.
Oh my gosh, yeah, he complained of a rheumatism and Um, yeah. Anyway, I thought that was just funny when I was thinking back, is there anything like that with with me where you're like, Nah, I didn't agree with you.
Izzy Meakin 25:07
With the Harry Potter episodes I am thinking, so I feel like I fall for the final pricing probably more than I actually feel it deep down in my heart. But once I get into like a debate that I'm like, I need to stick to my guns here, I'm gonna, I'm gonna prove this. The thing I love about recording those types of episodes is they're really easy. They don't take as much they do take in terms of like, they don't take research, but they take me sitting down and thinking things through. But that is like so enjoyable, I can do that with like a movie on the background of a hot chocolate. And don't get me wrong, I do enjoy the research and the diving into the books, pulling out the quotes and everything, but it is time consuming and in his energy consuming as well. So sometimes these episodes are such a breath of fresh air for me, because I can just be like, I'm just going to think about this in a fun way, not going to worry about it too much. And it also means we can go beat off our, our kind of surface level, I want to say surface level because we do have quite we have obviously an in depth knowledge of Austen's work, but in a sense, or surface level knowledge, the stuff that's already there, we don't need to look back and, you know, pull things out.
Right. And yeah, just like you said, it still takes a level of work, but it's also really fun to keep it light hearted. And, uh, you know, I think we had, even though I'm really proud of our letters, one, two, that's a there's a lot less laughter happening on those kinds of episodes than there are when we're doing the sorting hat or the awkward Austen characters type situation.
Izzy Meakin 26:33
Yeah. And you know what I love about it as well, I actually got a review from somebody, if you left this review, thank you so much, because one it was really eye opening for. It's like I knew deep down what I wanted this podcast to be. But this review kind of said it back to me in a way that made more sense. And in this review, she was stating that I believe it was a she that while they were stating that the podcast on the podcast that that we have this conversations that IV is a gene that you've been having on your own in your own mind for years, or you've been having with all your Geno friends and I'm just like, that is exactly what I wanted to capture in the podcast. This isn't, you know, I'm not going to teach you about everything to do with the history of the Regency area and nor am I going to go through the book chapter by chapter but what I wanted the podcast to be is where you come when you're already an established like Jane Austen fan while you're growing your Jane Austen love is you come here and you have the fun conversations but also the in depth conversations about the novels and these cross comparison ones. I feel like it absolutely the conversations I always wanted to have with the J knights like what what how else would they be in for Harry Potter and the conversations that I have with like my younger brother and stuff?
Totally. And it's it's hard to find people who who truly understand right? Because most people haven't read all of Jane Austen's novels, or if they have also don't like Harry Potter or Disney. And so it Yeah, it is just so fun to have other people who know the context. So you can really have those in depth in depth conversations that are also kind of silly on some level, like, sometimes when I listened to it, I'm like, Oh my gosh, we're talking about whether l&r Dashwood is like Gryffindor or Hufflepuff. And that's just such a nuanced funny thing to be talking about. But it's so much fun to do. And it's so fun to have other people to talk it through with,
Izzy Meakin 28:25
and is so rare, like this is the first time like since I started, obviously, the Instagram account if met met you and obviously the rest of the community. This is the first time I've actually had people to have those conversations where because like you said, it's so rare in a sense, I don't know if it's rare, or if we just have never all come together in a sense, where it's difficult to find people who know the books so well, that you can have a detailed conversation about one particular character in all of the different houses they may fit into based on their characteristics. It is very nuanced. And I feel like I just want to look at what I get emotional about it. But I feel like so lucky that I've kind of found this community now. And thank God, I mean, it could have taken me over 10 years, I don't know. But I'm just glad that I took the plunge to meet the Instagram account and then the podcast and just Yeah, meet like minded people.
I feel the same way. I don't want to get emotional too. But I think we've talked about how there have been so many amazing things that have happened this year and your podcast and the podcast has been doing so so well. And so many wonderful things that have happened that we should be proud of. And there's been a lot of hard stuff happening to like i You were totally my rock during COVID and then also just being in grad school post COVID and just feeling like I don't have as much time and space to put into the Instagram and into my Instagram lately. I it's just been I've missed so much connecting with other janeites and it's such an amazing break. from grad school and my job to be talking about this, yeah, just to be talking about something I'm so passionate about that is outside of my identity as a student and as a therapist, and to just have other supportive people who are there doing that with me.
Izzy Meakin 30:18
Please actually, it's all around Welcome guys.
Leave University. I know I do feel like it's our special little world. And it's like, Okay, I am making time for this world. This world is so important.
Izzy Meakin 30:40
Yeah, I didn't know you always think it's so strange that there's so many people that are like, in my quote unquote, real life or like people I knew in the past who just have no idea about like my podcasts on my page whatsoever in a lot of that is literally because if I even if I tried to explain to somebody like what this is about, they just would not get it. And I just think I don't. In that sense, they're not going to add to the community. So there's no point me trying to explain to them what this is, because it seems like never read Jane Austen. And they're just like, What are you doing, like, sit there? Hours and hours of content based on Jane Austen. I'm
just like, well, I
Izzy Meakin 31:12
don't really need to bring you in if you don't really get what's going on here. Because we get what's going on? That's what matters.
Where's that so funny? Because I'll always send the podcast to my family and friends. And like, even if you don't know what's going on, can you please download this and listen to
Izzy Meakin 31:29
me? Do you send it to my family? I send them a message saying like, you know, please, can you come over and sample my podcast? And you know, they do. I mean, I do have that many family members on Instagram, but like my mom and my brother, they're always following my content and liking everything and sharing it. Which is amazing. Yeah, I don't want to put pressure on anybody to follow this. But for me, this is like, this is my safe space. This is my like, my little universe, my vagina friends. And yeah, I just love that it's a space where you can be authentically yourself. I feel like when you're growing up, it's so difficult to be like very passionate about one thing like, I've like, obviously, I've always been very passionate about Jane Austen. But I feel like I spent said that a lot of growing up. And I feel like having the podcast and the content are interesting. I could just do this I can be myself I can I can live Austen openly join me.
Oh, completely, completely. And like what I just said to about family and friends. They can support me all they want. But there's a level of understanding with the geonet community where because they share that niche passion. And because they know all of the details of everything that I love about Austen, you can have those really in depth, authentic, meaningful conversations. And yeah, I completely agree with you. I wouldn't when I've been obsessed with Austen, sometimes I've tried to downplay it a little bit. Not anymore.
Izzy Meakin 32:51
And being true to myself. But yeah, I think he made a really good point as well, that there have been like some great things to celebrate this year. But also this year has been like super tough for me. So I wasn't like super open about this on the Instagram page. Because I mean, some things are just private. But obviously, like the end of summer, my granddad passed away. And that just like halted everything for me. So like all the episodes, I was lucky that I recorded some stuff previously. But yeah, that really did stop everything for me for a good while. And I think anyone who's like gone through like a grieving process will know this, but it was just, I just had like no drive. I was just sad to be honest with you. I mean, it is just like cry a lot. And it's just like really difficult to focus on things that you're passionate about. Because I don't necessarily think it's not that it doesn't feel right. But it just doesn't come to you completely lose your like creative inspiration. So that was really hard for the latter end of the year. And I think also it was me accepting that even though I had like such grand plans for the podcast at the start of the year, things may not turn out the way that I thought they would now and I just needed to kind of let go a little bit and be like, whatever comes out is still going to be great. Don't get so like, caught up in the details of it this time.
Exactly. Yeah. I mean, there's there's nothing harder than losing your grandparent. And that makes so much sense what you said about not just losing motivation and losing some some passion to do it. And I think that kind of brings up the point that this is not something you do for a job that you have to do. This is something that takes so much work outside of the job setting. And it's I mean, first of all, you did do such an amazing job and I think you were saying how certain people really showed up for you in that time and were willing to rearrange their schedules and exactly what you said about the acceptance piece of it. What it didn't turn out to be exactly how you planned it. But it turned out very well. And I don't know about you. I'm so proud of all the episodes and everything that you've been able to do despite what a hard year it's been.
Izzy Meakin 35:19
Oh my gosh. Absolutely. And you, Martha add, if it wasn't for like you guys, I think I would have struggled to get episodes out this year. Because you were you were just like that, like, okay, I can jump on. I'll do this with you. And I could just come with like, the idea that I had, I was like, This is what I'm wanting to do all this work in sometimes it was really last minute, like, hats off to Martha with the Adolfo episode. That is a mahoosive book. And the two others read it and prep for a podcast in two weeks. It was it was insane, honestly, and she just really pulled out all the stops for me. And I just Yeah, I can't thank her enough for that. And I didn't specifically go too much with that. Because I knew, like if anyone's gonna be able to achieve this podcast episode with me, it's gonna be Martha because she is like such a avid reader. Like, totally, she reads like so many books a month. And I was like, I feel like I'll be able to do this with me. And I reached out to and she's like, Yeah, so like I can we can do this. Yeah. And I'm like, Oh my God. Thank God. Thank you.
Okay, I'm glad you clarified because you I remember you talking to me about that episode. And you were like, Oh, we did it last minute. Meanwhile, you said Oh, yes. I listened to the 30 hour audio book. Yudof Oh, so like, the level of commitment, hear from both of you is just incredible. And also how all of those visuals that you created for the mysteries of you dasa that you had on the website, that also must be taken so much work to and it was so helpful, and understanding how the plot of that novel influenced Northanger Abbey. It was, it was so impressive. So yeah, hats off to you. And Martha, that was huge. That was a huge commitment.
Izzy Meakin 37:00
Oh, my God, I know, I feel like I was really lucky in the sense that I kind of hit one of my hyper focus modes like just as the start of October. So obviously, she's like, I can do everything. I can get all of this stuff done. And yeah, making the graphic as well. I remember, when I was editing the podcast, I was like, I feel like this makes a lot of sense to me a massive I was like, if you've not listened to the 30 hours like we have, Will there still be like difficulty placing all the characters. So I thought you know what a cheat sheet on everything is gonna be so helpful. And you might just want to listen to the episode and do the cheat sheet and not read the book ever at all, which I totally get feel like having just that little bit more knowledge of you dollar flow, or any of unranked lists worth actually brings this whole totally new perspective on Jane Austen's work. That's really valuable and really insightful. So yeah, I was super proud of that episode. And that was one of the again that I had in my mind. I just didn't know if I was going to achieve it this year. And I was just like, gosh, like, is that something I can still pull off now? I was honestly thinking, oh my god, I'm not even gonna get all the episodes out this year. So yeah, that yeah, Martha really did pull out all the stops for that one. See, I really appreciate that from her. And he turned out to be such a great episode. And yeah, I was really proud of it.
It did. And I remember thinking, one of the most important things that you guys talked about was, if you understand the mysteries of you, Dolphin, you've read it. And you know, it was written by Ann Radcliffe, it makes John Thorp look like so much more of an idiot when he says that he doesn't like to read that, but he likes and Radcliffe, and it makes you realise how much of the better fit Henry telling me is for Katherine because he does appreciate the novel and because he has read it, and he does get the references. You guys did a really good job not only summarising the plot, but but really explaining why it's important to understand the context and how it shows up in the characters in northern you're Abbi.
Izzy Meakin 38:58
I looked up a circuit. But that was October. So if we take like a few steps back a couple of months, so a lot of this year has been the Disney episodes. So total disclaimer here guys, that original episode was two we recorded it in two sittings. And it was going to be two really long episodes. Basically at the start of July, I was chatting to Annabelle saying because so much great content here. But also, these episodes are going to be so long. And I started to think to myself if I was a listener, would all of these long episodes be practical for me? Or do I enjoy episodes that are a little bit shorter sometimes that I can like, listen to on a dog walk on a commute? I started to think Hang on a second. Maybe I can make some shorter episodes but also get more content out per month. One I really enjoyed editing them that way because I slowly got to focus on the particular things I spoke to and all about it and we chatted about, you know how we could adjust them so that they work as individual episodes, but it meant that I could solely focus on The book per episode, which is fantastic. And also my god it after my grandma passed away, it ended up being such a saving grace because it meant that I had so much content, so much great content already recorded that I could use throughout the year. So it took so much pressure off me because I knew a lot of people will be thinking, you know, obviously, like my grandma passed away, maybe it just put the podcast on the side, but it clearly knows about me. Being autistic, that's really just not an option for me a lot of the time, like, when you've got like a passion project, it's very, very difficult to put it aside and almost feels wise to do so. So the fact that I could still get episodes out that were great quality topics that I loved really meant a lot. So
YouTube blew my mind honestly, with the level of detail that you know about both this Disney and Jane Austen. I mean, I thought I was a Disney fan. But these characters that you brought up these minor characters it that you that you remember remembered from all of the Disney movies, it takes a lot of research and I just I really thought it was a very fun connection to see the Disney villains and heroes and how they related to characters in Austen. Just very fun episodes to listen to. And also just want to name that you were doing that for two and a half hours just the level of nuance and research that had to go into that. Yeah, I
Izzy Meakin 41:25
mean, if you count up like the the time of all the episodes and think about the fact that we recorded this in two sittings, and those are edited down so obviously, I never want my guests to feel like they can't just speak openly or freely and I stumble on my words all the time, Caily stumbles otherwise both of us choke every so often, literally regularly reach out multiple times per episode. So I never want guests to feel like I don't I absolutely do edit the episodes because I just want us to be able to speak freely and not worry so much if we make mistakes or if we stumble on our words. And so those were obviously edited and then cut down. So there's a lot so much content, but I feel so, so lucky to have another friend because I can't think of anyone will perfect to do a Disney Jane Austen crossover with like, I could never have found a more perfect friend to do that with Nan.
Also it takes it takes a lot of work. Think about how many Disney characters there are. And if you're factoring in the minor characters, how much work and nuance it takes to find a specific minor character and then compare it to a Jane Austen character. So yeah, perfect fit. And you guys have a really great podcast chemistry too.
Izzy Meakin 42:33
And again, is it like fun ones that kind of work in a good balance with the more academic based ones like another fantastic, well researched episode was the one with L the Edward Faris one that was so interesting because he's never been like one of my favourite characters or someone I spend that much time thinking about, but it was so good to kind of look at him in a little bit more detail. And I'll always just bring so much great knowledge to the table. It's so easy to record as I just like to get this unit going. And
that was honestly one of my favourite episodes of the year was the Edward FERS episode, I really realised I liked the episodes where you do a character study like a deep dive of a particular character, especially when it's a character that's underrated, or maybe occasionally passed over. And I loved the way that you framed it was starting out talking about Joseph Campbell and how Joseph Campbell defines what a hero is, what a great way to ground things and centre things.
Izzy Meakin 43:33
The reason that I chose to do in the average fires episode is because we got I got such great feedback on the Colonel Brandon one like loads of people said to me, like that was one of their favourite episodes, they love the deep dive and also the Charlotte Lucas one that I did with Georgia that people just really liked the deep dive on the characters, which I totally get that they are really fun to do. And I like to pick characters that aren't already over over analyse if that makes sense. There will come a time when I want to do Darcy and Elizabeth and things. But I think it's so much more interesting to do the characters that people don't necessarily love, even though that in Hero positions, or even if they're in sidekick positions, like they're not the perfect characters. And I think there's something really interesting about that.
I completely agree. I think it's actually more interesting to do a deep dive of a character like Edward FERS than it is to do Darcy because everyone is constantly talking about Elizabeth or Darcy. And so yeah, I thought that was just such an interesting discussion. The two of you had talking about the pros and cons of him being a hero.
Izzy Meakin 44:40
I love that so much. So another thing that came out kind of in this summer period, and was quite an interesting, controversial topic, and that was the Netflix persuasion. And I did that episode with Yolanda and Jillian from the Pemberly podcast. Now guys, I am going to say before we get into this conversation, because I know exactly where it came just gonna go with this. The reason that I picked Yolanda and Julian to do this was is because I knew they would take a more balanced approach because they have such incredible knowledge and industry experience in what it is to make films like TV shows, just media in general. And so they can come with things from a media stance, which I can never do is not my area. And obviously, I'm very passionate about Jane Austen. But they know Jane Austen as well. And their podcast is about Jane Austen and Regency adaptation. So I thought it'd be the perfect people to make a more balanced approach to the, to the, to the film that came out, because they knew if me and Caily jumps on the tongue to like, right guys, this is two hours, it was just like late in this film. Now, I wanted to be that
for sure. And I just wanted to say that Julian and Yolanda I agree brought so much knowledge talking about film creation and how you can have I thought one of the best points that they made was how you can have a Regency period adaptation that doesn't necessarily have to be the same quality as the Sense and Sensibility of adaptations are the Pride and Prejudice adaptations or the reason Emma adaptation. And it's okay, and it's actually a good thing for people to have exposure to a regency area, or a regency era piece and get excited about it. I think my biggest issue is don't call it persuasion if it doesn't actually honour the story. So I'm okay with Sure. Get people excited about the Regency period. And if and I thought another good point of theirs was, you always want to bring something new to an adaptation that people in the current generation can get excited about and relate to. And I was I was fine. With all of that I was ready to take the story in a more modernised way. But there were just too many things that happened with the pacing, where I thought the pacing was completely off in the story. And certain you mentioned certain parts that were oddly rushed. That made the story more confusing for someone who doesn't know the novel, and then other pieces that were very slow. And they just, it wasn't an Elliot, it wasn't an Elliott's character, just like you said she was she was this sassier sort of means spirited on some level person who didn't have the the kind of humility and in depth that an Eliot has in the novel and that really threw me off.
Izzy Meakin 47:40
Yeah, in the West, I felt like I was like such a wise heroine. Like she goes through so much. And she learns from it but it's this she's like, stoic for like a kid like eight years. And she's just like, you know, learning about herself just absorbing everything. So by the time like the novel hits, she's really she's really wise person and obviously like Freidrich goes to her for advice and everything. I totally lost that she came across very unapproachable and unreliable and just a bit chaotic.
And desperate. I came across super desperate like the scene where she's lying around and Lady Russell's like, Babe, it's been eight years you need to get over it. It felt. Yeah, she I mean, again, I really I love what I love about Austen is her level of nuance, like, yes, this story is devastating and never loved anyone else. She said no to other marriage proposals, but an in the novel can continue to live and she's the one taking care of things financially when the rest of her family is so narcissistic, and she's continuing to live her life. But there's still this deep longing as opposed to this and seemed very openly Oh, I'll never be happy again. I'm not I'm not really living my life. And
Izzy Meakin 48:58
yeah, yeah, I can feel that I feel like they were spending too much time. Like, this is what the entire thing is building up towards. Like, why have you just spent so much time talking about octopuses? And walking on the beach? When you should have spent the time on this? Because I felt like the last seven minutes. I felt like I was watching on like times to speed. Yeah. Oh, I
can. Yeah, exactly what you just said that's what I meant about the pacing to like I'm like, why do we have this long, stupid octopus scene and exactly what you said walking on the beach, and then the pace of the important moments seems too
Izzy Meakin 49:31
fast. Okay, so that pretty much brings us to the back to the later episodes. I think so. We obviously have we've kind of covered you'd also anyway, we covered that at the start, but we obviously had our villain off which I love. I really like that I started to get some like really lol obviously the past couple months. I've got I had some really great comments about that. And obviously we put the vote to you guys as well. And you did side with our perception that Isabella is the was but it was close it was close the vote that I put out on my Instagram page was It was nearly half and half I can't just wait Isabella which I was really surprised about.
I was shocked about that too. I thought that it would be more clear cut people rooting for Isabella over Caroline. But I think that makes it so fun when it is
Izzy Meakin 50:21
what I love as well as some people have been messaging with like suggestions for next year's villainous lock, like funny dashboard forward so that's really interesting. I'm definitely putting on the possibility because she's such a hilarious but also just like awful character. Mrs. Norris coming up. Henry Crawford obviously missed Alia. I mean, we've got so many guys. We've got villain offs for years to go.
Oh my gosh, we could do Fanny Dashwood versus Mrs. Norris or Fanny Dashwood versus Lucy still because they're both so bad.
Izzy Meakin 50:57
Yeah. So many good ones, right, honestly.
Right. Oh my gosh. Yeah. Love it.
Izzy Meakin 51:02
Yes. I'm really looking forward to that. And anything that again, I run by Caily, so don't worry. Like, can you do you think this is good? This is my plan for next year. These are the ones that I see in my mind's eye. Do you think they're possible?
Love it. You come up with such good ideas? I Yeah. And we have to talk about the Harriet's Miss Episode Two.
Izzy Meakin 51:19
Oh, my God. Yeah. Do oh my gosh, don't let me forget that one. Because that one cracks me up. That was such such a funny episode to do. I loved it so much. Bunkley.
Yes. It's just what a charismatic, awesome person to have a pod have on a podcast. I just loved listening to her opinion, opinion. And she was calling herself a baby J night. But she had said, I was like, you've got a queen. That is incredible. I was like, first of all, I love that expression. But she just had so much knowledge to bring to the table in such a unique perspective. And I love the way that the episode started off. She she was talking about Harriet Smith and said, Girl, you need to get a fire under your belly. That is so true. That is That is such a good point. I really loved how you both honour the fact that Harriet Smith actually does have a lot of really great qualities. She's very pretty, she actually does seem to have a good sense of intuition. But the biggest issue is she just doesn't trust herself. And so I thought you You both did just such a phenomenal character of study of her.
Izzy Meakin 52:26
Yeah, that was a fantastic episode. And so good to like, dive deep into Harriet Smith, because, again, is just like an overlooked character. And I feel like the more you read enter, the more you can overlook her, if that makes sense. Absolutely. And then so basically, that brings us up to December because we've already chatted a little bit about the Disney villain episodes, which do continue over in November. But yeah, basically, we have this episode that we're holding right now. And also, we had the Jane Austen gift guide that I did with Elena pro house a Bennett. So that was like earlier this month, which is so fun, because it was just good to chat about different things. They're available to buy the Jane Austen theme because I really just love to buy anything like that or get it as gifts. I really like one birthday, I think I shared on Instagram, but I literally just got Jane Austen themed gifts for my birthday from everybody.
I love that so much. And even as we're talking right now I'm seeing your beautiful Emma portrait behind you.
Izzy Meakin 53:29
Oh my god, I love that so much. I honestly this is the thing with like, oh, I don't buy artwork very often. But when I see something, you've got to have that example is that Emma portrayed. And when I saw it, I just couldn't get out of my mind. And I just knew in my gut, I had to have it. But another example is one of the first pieces of art Me and Nick ever bought together as I think it was maybe a year or two into his date and and we were in Barcelona, and there was this street artist and he had the most incredible painting of love and bliss. And I was like, Oh my gosh, I was like, I just love it. And he just couldn't get out of my mind. And me and Nick like chatted about the pages, and we took his card and we went and found his like little shop around the corner. And he wanted quite a lot for I think he was like, well, quite a lot for us at the time. And I think it was like 200 pounds or something. We were like, oh, that's just like, way out of our price range. Like we're on holiday. Like we really can't afford that. And I think he ended up selling it to us for kind of like 150 or something like he told us like loads of money off. And I was like because you were saying like we really love this painting. And yeah, we still have it now and I still love it as much. So yeah, I'm quite picky with art. But that Emma ones another one, which I just knew in my gut I had to have and I love it so much. It's so pretty.
I love when you find those pieces that just capture a passion that you love, like so I also love having Jane Austen paraphernalia around my apartment so that I can just, I don't know just be reminded of all the couples that I love and so yeah, Masha Lawrence art, she just does phenomenal. Jane Austen drawings, and I have so many of them in my apartment and there's particularly there's one of Anne and Wentworth, that is so beautiful. And yeah, I just can't stop. Whenever I want a new Austen piece. I always kind of go toward her art.
Izzy Meakin 55:20
Yeah, honestly, I love just like all things like that. I love my Jane Austen Funko Pop. I didn't include that in the gift guide. But I really loved I weren't take her on the books, though. Honestly, it wasn't too weird. I'm about to buy cancer in the book. Since I've had I've never taken a Toy Story to use, you know, any like preserved.
me right now. That's so funny. You don't want little gene to get hurt. It's just gonna stay in her box. She felt like
Izzy Meakin 55:47
I'm ever gonna sell her or anything. But yeah, I just want to preserve her. So yeah, I just keep her in a box. And then that brings us to this episode, and December, which oh my god, if you've been following me on Insta, you know, with the house move and everything. It's been a really wild couple of weeks. I was sharing all about that on my story. So I won't bore you again with the story here. But I'm glad to be taking a few weeks off now for sure. So this is the last episode out. And I probably won't post on Instagram. Because really, I just need to recenter on everything and just work on all the exciting updates and topics for next year, I've been working so much of getting like guests paired up with topic ideas, I just want to keep it a project that I really enjoy. So I think taking a few weeks off will mean that I can just you know, come back with a fresh mindset. And also, I'm going to spend this time to kind of revamp the podcast a little bit. So I'm going to be moving to Riverside for recording. And so hopefully the audio quality is going to improve for 2023 and just some other Brandon bass things, I'm going to be changing up a little bit. So I'm super excited for that. And for the people I'm working on for those projects, but also all the guests that I've got planned for next year. So like I said, you know, this has been really difficult to get guests on not because people weren't willing just because I you know, I've been dealing with so much this year. So next year, I'm really excited to get some new guests on new voices, but also these familiar voices that you've all loved so far as well. So it's gonna be a good combination, and there's going to be some really amazing topics coming out. And I hope you're gonna enjoy. But yeah, I think taking a bit of time just to reflect on everything and regain some energy ready for the new year I think is important. Well, no, it's so
important to think about that right? So that it stays fun. And you know, the more that we're excited to do the episodes, you can always really hear when people are excited and passionate about talking about all of these different things. And so you want to keep it a fun experience.
Izzy Meakin 57:46
I think so. And I'm really excited for next year. I think it's gonna be really good. I hope you've enjoyed this episode a little bit chill me and Kelly just talking about the year that's gone. And I think it's a good way to wrap things up. If you'd like to say anything.
I think at this point, you all know who I am. And you can find me. And yeah, I thank you so much for listening. I have loved everything that we've accomplished over the last year I think is you have so much to be proud of. And I'm also so stoked for all of these new ideas that you have for the upcoming year and you guys shouldn't be excited as he has a lot of really good stuff coming your way. I'm so excited to share
Izzy Meakin 58:29
everything. I can't wait honestly, I am so excited. And guys, obviously this is a wrap up episode. As I was saying before, if you do have a little bit of time, reading the podcast leaving reviews really does help to grow it and just sharing it you know your friends and family fellow janeites Thank you for everybody who's listened this year and I will see you in 2023