Tim Harris Jacqueline Harvey Libby Hathorn Catherine Jinks L.A. Larkin
Nicola Moriarty Catherine Pelosi Courtney Peppernell Stella Tarakson Dianne Todaro-Wells
Belinda Castles Belinda won the Australian/Vogel's literary award for The River Baptists in 2006 and was one of the Sydney Morning Herald's Best Young Novelists for 2008. Her next novel, Hannah & Emil, won the Asher Literary Award for 2012-13. Her latest novel Bluebottle was published May 2018. She has recently returned from teaching in the UK and is currently a lecturer in creative writing at the University of Sydney. Belinda lives with her husband and daughters on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. Visit her blog page.
Lauren Chater Lauren writes fiction with a particular focus on women's stories. After working for many years in a variety of media roles, she turned her passion for reading and research into a professional pursuit. In 2014, she was the successful recipient of the Fiona McIntosh Commercial Fiction scholarship. In addition to writing fiction, she established The Well Read Cookie, a blog which celebrates her love of baking and literature. She lives in Sydney with her husband and two children. The Lace Weaver, her first novel, was published by Simon & Schuster in April 2018. She is currently working on her second novel, Gulliver's Wife, and Well Read Cookies, a non-fiction book based on her popular blog. Catch her at her website.
Chris Hammer Chris was a journalist for more than 30 years, dividing his time between covering Australian federal politics and international affairs and has worked for SBS, The Age, and The Bulletin among others. His first book The River (non-fiction), published in 2010, to critical acclaim, was the recipient of the ACT Book of the Year Award as well as being shortlisted for the Walkley Book Award and the Manning Clark House National Cultural Award.
L.A. Larkin Thriller author, L.A. Larkin, has been described by James Phelan as ‘a world-class thriller writer’ and likened to Michael Crichton by The Guardian and Alistair MacLean by The Times. Devour (2017) was highly praised by authors such as Peter James and Kathryn Fox. Sue Turnbull in The Age said of Devour: ‘Bounding into the hitherto masculine preserve of the action thriller comes a new breed of female heroine – journalist Olivia Wolfe.’ Larkin is author of The Genesis Flaw and Thirst, and also writes humorous mysteries as Louisa Bennet. She is currently working on a psychological thriller about trolling, and is on the Ned Kelly Awards organising committee. Visit her webpage.
Nicola Moriarty She is a Sydney-based novelist, copywriter and mum to two small (but remarkably strong willed) daughters. In between various career changes, becoming a mum and completing her BA, she began to write. Now, she can’t seem to stop. Her latest novel, Those Other Women is being published in Australia, the UK and the USA, while her previous novel, The Fifth Letter was translated into several languages and has been optioned for film and television by Universal Cable Productions. She blogs (occasionally) at her website here.
Authors, Children's Authors, Poets
Antoinette Conolly Antoinette has been writing fantasy novels for young readers for the last eleven years after retiring from teaching foreign languages. She held positions in Training and Development and Curriculum Coordination with the Department of Education and Training. She has a Bachelor of Arts (Newcastle University), and a Master of Educational Administration (University of New South Wales). The Cauchemar Trilogy (Zachary’s Odyssey, Perilous Journey and Mactavish’s Destiny) was published in 2006/7 and reprinted in 2010. After receiving emails from readers who wanted to know ‘what happened after that’, a sequel, Alien Wizardry was published in 2014. A stand-alone novel about time travel, A Key to Time was published in 2012. The Fifth Planet was published in 2017 and is a science fiction story about two children who stow away on an alien space shuttle. Antoinette visits primary schools on invitation. Contact her on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ursula Dubosarsky She was born in Sydney wanted to be a writer from the age of six. She is now the author of over 60 books for children and young adults and has won several national prizes, including the NSW, Victorian, South Australian and Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards. She has also been nominated for the international Hans Christian Anderson and Astrid Lindgren awards for children’s literature. Her most recent books are the picture book "Midnight in the Library", illustrated by Ron Brooks, and the novel "Brindabella", illustrated by Andrew Joyner, about the rescue of a baby kangaroo. Discover more about Ursula at her website.
Tim Harris Tim is one of the most exciting children’s authors in Australia. His first series of books, Exploding Endings, will have primary-aged readers both captivated and laughing out loud. The first book in the series, Painted Dogs & Doom Cakes, was awarded Honour Book at the 2017 KOALAs. His second series, Mr Bambuckle’s Remarkables, contains his trademark quirkiness, mixed with a touch of poignancy, with the lead book being awarded a CBCA Notable. He lives in Sydney with his wife and three young children. See his website.
Jacqueline Harvey Jacqueline Harvey is one of Australia’s most popular children’s authors, having sold over a million copies of her Alice-Miranda and Clementine Rose series’ in Australia alone. The first book in her brand-new spy series, Kensy and Max: Breaking News, is already thrilling young readers with drama, action and loads of fun. She has received numerous short-listings and awards while her picture book, The Sound of the Sea was a CBCA Honour Book. A highly experienced teacher and presenter, Jacqueline has delivered thousands of talks and workshops at schools and festivals around the world. She is currently working on new adventures for Alice-Miranda, Clementine Rose and Kensy and Max. Visit her website.
Libby Hathorn She is an award-winning author of more than eighty books for children and young people. Translated into several languages and adapted for stage and screen, her work has won honours in Australia, United States, Great Britain and Holland. She wrote Way Home, illustrated by Greg Rogers, which won the Kate Greenaway Award UK; her first YA novel Thunderwith was made a movie by Hallmark Hall of Fame; and her opera libretto Grandma’s Shoes (composer Graeme Koehne) won her an AWGIE . Her national awards and honours include a Centenary Medal for work in children’s literature; the Alice Award for a woman writer, 2014; and the Asher Literary Award, 2017. In 2015 Libby worked with the NSW State Library developing three scripts on Australian poets. Her most recent novel is Eventual Poppy Day (shortlisted SWW Biennial Awards). Her most recent picture books are: Incredibilia, shortlisted Queensland Premier’s Awards, 2016; Outside, CBCA Notable Book, 2016. A Soldier a Dog and a Boy, CBCA Notable Book and Asher Literary Award 2017. She is currently working with composer Elena Katz Chernin on a children’s opera based on Outside. Other work in progress includes a young adult novel entitled Asylum and a picture book about Miles Franklin Miss Franklin (Hachette, 2019). Catch up with her on her website.
Catherine Jinks Catherine Jinks was born in Brisbane in 1963. She grew up in Papua New Guinea and later studied medieval history at the University of Sydney. After working for several years in a bank, she married Peter Dockrill, a Canadian journalist, and lived for a short time in Nova Scotia, Canada. Now a full-time writer she lives in the Blue Mountains with their daughter. Catherine is a four-time winner of the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year award, and has also won a Victorian Premier’s Literature Award, the Adelaide Festival Award for Literature, the Ena Noel Award for Children’s Literature and an Aurealis Award for Science Fiction. In 2001 she was presented a Centenary Medal for her contribution to Australian Children’s Literature. Visit her webpage.
Sara Mansour Sara is a lawyer and spoken word poet who co-founded Bankstown Poetry Slam in February 2013. Sara writes and performs about the political in a very personal way. She is passionate about how spoken word poetry can be effective in empowering communities, especially youth.
Catherine Pelosi Catherine is a Sydney-based children's book author. When she was younger, she loved two things in equal measure: animals and writing stories. For a long time she wanted to be a zoologist. Catherine has had several jobs working with animals, including in wildlife rescue, as a dinosaur tour guide and marketing for an animal shelter in London, but her love of writing never went away. These days, she writes in between working as a social media manager. Catherine hasn't lost her love of animals, however, and you will often find one or two roaming through her stories. QUARK'S ACADEMY is Catherine's first novel; SOMETHING FOR FLEUR is her first picture book. Her third book MEET THE MANIACS will be released in 2019. Visit her at her website.
Courtney Peppernell Courtney is the best-selling author of Pillow Thoughts. Her writing career launched in 2015 with her debut novel Chasing Paper Cranes. Her first poetry collection Pillow Thoughts was released in 2016. Having also captured the attention of world renowned artists The Chainsmokers, Pillow Thoughts was then re published by Andrews McMeel Universal, along with her second poetry collection The Road Between in August 2017. Courtney also released her second novel Keeping Long Island in 2017. She is currently writing her third novel Finding Marnie as well as working on four other poetry collections. Courtney spends her days writing and working on many projects with her beloved German Shepherd Hero, always keeping her feet warm. She hopes to continue exploring expression and the art of healing through stories and poetry for years to come. Courtney grew up in Sydney and currently lives there with her partner Rhian, and their dogs Hero and Dakota. Visit her webpage.
Stella Tarakson A lawyer-turned-author, Stella was rather too eager to leave the safety of her sensible job and plunge into the uncertain world of publishing. Fortunately she’s managed to have over 40 books published, mostly for young people. She’s written law books, school books, and children’s non-fiction. Aliens, Ghosts and Vanishings: strange and possibly true Australian stories made the CBCA list of notables, and she’s lucky enough to have won several awards for her writing. More recently, she’s fulfilled her dream to write fiction. Mike the Spike was published locally, but Stella had to look overseas for her next deal. The first two books of her Hopeless Heroes series were recently launched in London. Based on Greek mythology, Stella is thrilled to bring her quirky take on these tales to a wider audience. Connect with her on her website.
Dianne Todaro-Wells Dianne is the author of multiple parenting books – including Puberty Girl and Puberty Boy – that are now in over 100,000 homes and 10 languages. Dianne found her calling while working as a teacher and recognizing first hand the problems that stemmed from a lack of 21st century literature for young people that would captivate, be fun to read, and honest. Her latest book is How girls talk to boys…by Allen & Uwnin. Currently she is turning to fiction and is underway with a children’s novelette titled: Guiseppina.com aka Sugar. And is launching her new website downtherabbithole.sydney which is loaded up with podcasts that exploit the best tips from her books.
Linda Funnell Linda is a publisher and editor, and has taught courses in publishing, editing and writing for UTS, the ASA and the NSW Writers’ Centre. She has worked for a number of Australian publishers, including ten years as publisher with HarperCollins, where she published authors including Janette Turner Hospital, Steven Carroll, Colleen McCullough, Jill Roe and Geraldine Brooks. For seven years she worked with legendary literary agent, the late Rosemary Creswell. Linda is currently a freelance editor and publishing consultant, as well as co-editor of the free online book review the Newtown Review of Books, which she and Jean Bedford founded in March 2012. Visit her webpage.
Zoe Walton Zoe Walton is Publisher – Random House Young Readers at Penguin Random House Australia. Zoe edits New York Times bestselling author John Flanagan with his Ranger’s Apprentice and Brotherband series, which have sold eight million copies worldwide. She also publishes many popular and award-winning Australian authors, including Deborah Abela, Tristan Bancks, Fleur Ferris, Emily Gale, Darren Groth, Nicole Hayes, Skye Melki-Wegner and Belinda Murrell.
Clare Halifax Clare Hallifax has worked in publishing since 1990. As publishing manager at Scholastic Australia, she is both publisher of Omnibus Books, and manager of Scholastic’s Digital publishing program. Studying both journalism and literature led Clare to publishing. Her first job in children’s books involved “fact-checking” - standing on one foot, and flicking rubber bands, under the guise of editing primary school science texts. During her career, Clare has worked with some of the esteemed names of Australian publishing. She retains a love of both fiction and non-fiction and the excitement of discovering new stories and new voices never gets old (unlike Clare!)
Jess Owen Jess is an editor for Penguin Young Readers, Penguin Random House Australia. She has always had her nose in a book and when she began her career in children’s publishing, she knew she’d found her place. Jess edits across all genres of children’s books from picture books, illustrated fiction, junior fiction, YA and non-fiction.
James Read James Read is an Editor at Pantera Press, a boutique publishing house with a focus on finding and nurturing fresh Australian talent. He handles manuscript submissions at Pantera Press, actively seeking strong new writing that showcases great storytelling, regardless of genre. James is actively involved in structural editing, copy editing and proofreading of manuscripts plus author liaison. A vivacious reader with a passion for Australian authors, you’ll always find James with a book in his hands!
Lex Hirst Lex Hirst is a commissioning editor for Penguin Random House, a festival director and an arts programmer driven by a love of great writing and exciting ideas. A previous co-director of the National Young Writers’ Festival, she is a SAMAG (Sydney Arts Management Advisory Group) committee member and the curator for Junkee.com’s Junket unconference. She is always on the lookout for outstanding new voices and stories.
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