The Dickens Museum has received a grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund to buy the desk and chair where Dickens wrote his final three books, for permanent display at the museum. The Guardian,BBC News, and Fine Books & Collections have the story.
Because it's National Handwriting Day, I thought I'd share a couple of samples of Dickens's handwriting here! First up: the beginning of Great Expectations, demonstrating that even the greatest of the greats had frequent scratchouts and rewritings.
And here's a picture of Dickens's signature with its famous flourish. At the Dickens Fellowship Conference last summer, we had a whole session on that flourish, its meanings, and how it changed over the years.
Hammacher Schlemmer is offering a reproduction of the first edition of Great Expectations. This article (from Februrary) talks about how Professor Joel J. Brattin of Worcester Polytechnic Institute assisted in making the reproduction as accurate as possible, going as far as "studying the weight of the original paper and the darkness of the black ink."
In Variety, Tony Jordan says that they're having trouble finding studio space for the show and that it may have to shoot in Eastern Europe, though he acknowledges, "It just doesn't feel quite right. It should be in the U.K." The piece also mentions some of the buildings and characters that are going to appear on the show.