In honour of the approaching conference season, this month’s spotlight features a paper presented last fall by Dana Mitchell, a PhD student in the Department of English. Mitchell’s paper, “Autobiography and Audience in Anne Thicknesse’s School for Fashion,” was featured in the program of the Canadian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (CSECS) conference. The conference, “Matters and Materials of Life, 1660-1820,” was held in October 2023 in Montreal. Mitchell’s paper focused on Anne Thicknesse—an eighteenth-century musician, writer, and socialite—and her semi-autobiographical novel, The School for Fashion. Published by subscription in 1800, the novel follows Euterpe, a young heroine who overcomes societal pressure and gendered expectations to perform her music publicly. Examining the intersections between fact, fiction, and extraliterary labour, Mitchell argues that the book’s subscription list illuminates the autobiographical elements of the text and helps renegotiate Thicknesse’s controversial reputation in fashionable society. The paper was developed from Mitchell’s interest in women’s writing and research, and from work she completed for Dr. Hugh Reid’s graduate course on Eighteenth-Century Book Subscription Lists.