Karen J Carlisle is a speculative fiction writer, based in Adelaide, focusing on steampunk, gaslamp, Victorian mysteries and fantasy. She is available for speaking engagements at conferences, libraries, schools, organisations and community groups. Her rates are reasonable and negotiable.

Current speaking topics include:


  • The History of Steampunk
  • Self Publishing, From an Australian Perspective
  • Costumes in Writing: Mid-16th Century Florentine Female Clothing and Accessories
  • Costumes in Writing: Late 19th Century Victorian Female Clothing
  • Plotting – for Non-Plotters (workshop)


  • Exploring Steampunk: A primer on steampunk and steampunk costuming
  • Costumes in Detail: Mid-16th Century Florentine Female Clothing and Accessories

About the presenter:

Karen has been active in steampunk since 2007 and has currently published the first two books in her first Victorian steampunk mystery, The Adventures of Viola Stewart. She has been a tabletop roleplayer since 1978, an active costumer and science fiction convention attendee for over three decades, and involved in historical re-enactment since 1994, with a special interest in mid-16th century Florentine clothing and accessories.

She has been a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism since 1994. She attended the Florence 2008 Costume Symposium: Janet Arnold Tribute, with lectures by Roberta Orsi Landini and the conservators of the Laboratorio Centro Restauri Tesseli, Pisa.

She has a Bachelor Applied Science in Optometry and worked with children for much of her career.

Karen  is a devoted Doctor Who fan (and willing to talk endlessly on the subject).

Next talk on:

  • August, 2017: How to write your own Discworld Story (workshop). Nullus Anxietus VI, West Lakes, South Australia.
  • August, 2017: Steampunk Panel (discussion). Nullus Anxietus VI, West Lakes, South Australia.

Karen has previously spoken at:

  • Aus Sci Fi & Fantasy Club, 2017: Talking Steampunk (genre, writing and costume). Video of talk available on youTube.
  • Adelaide Oz Comic Con, 2017.  Open a Book to Self Publishing (see schedule) Video of talk available on youTube.
  • Mutant Stepchildren writing group, 2016: Why I write steampunk/ self-publishing.
  • Aus Sci Fi & Fantasy Club, 2016: Steampunk and Self-publishing in Australia
  • History SA’s Dressing Up Exhibition, 2016: Exploring Steampunk (history and costume)
  • Critical Mass writing group, 2015: History of Steampunk/ Self-publishing
  • Armageddon Adelaide, 2011: Steampunk Accessories

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Per Talk: AU$300 (plus GST).
Engagement includes: approx. 45-60 minutes – includes talk and question/demonstration time.

Per Workshop: AU$250 (plus GST)
Engagement includes: approx 60 minutes of workshop/discussion

Per Day: AU$700 (plus GST) per day (3 talks max)
Engagement includes: Up to three talks – approx. 45-60 minutes – includes talk and question/demo time.

Note: Travel costs may be incurred for travel outside of metropolitan Adelaide.

Special arrangements can be made for community and non-profit groups.

To book Karen for a speaking engagement for libraries, organisations or schools,
please contact me
(subject: Speaking Engagment).


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