Little Steps Publishing
Maura is an author and playwright who enjoys writing fiction for children and young adults. The Trouble in Tune Town is her first children’s picture book, published in August 2017, and has just been awarded Joint Winner for Best Children’s Illustrated E-Book in the 2018 Independent Publisher Book Awards (IPPY).
Maura was also named winner of the CBCA Aspiring Writers Mentorship 2017, and recipient of the Charlotte Waring Barton Award, for her young adult manuscript, Freefalling. Her short plays have been performed in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney, with one winning an international monologue competition in 2016 and another being redeveloped as a full-length play as part of a KSP Fellowship.
In addition to her creative writing achievements, Maura has worked as an ethicist, medical video writer/producer, small business owner, freelance journalist and editor of Australian Medicine. She has a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctorate, each in philosophy.
Maura is currently completing a young adult novel, which she hopes will be published in 2019. She is also working on a full-length play and a monologue project on the theme of mental health.
Maura lives in Canberra with her husband, Kieran and three children – a far cry from the hustle and bustle of the Bronx, where she grew up.
Toni Brisland (nee Antonette Diorio) writes poetry and fiction for adults and children. Toni has always had a passion for literature and has won a number of competitions for unpublished children’s writers. She is inspired by the people in her life, animals, her extensive travels and the Australian way of doing things. Her poems have been published in Anthologies by Poetica Christi Press since 2013 and in The Heroines Anthology by Neo-Perennial Press, 2018 and 2019. In July 2019 one of her poems won an Award in the Adelaide Plains Festival of Words Poetry Competition. In July 2020 one of her poems won the Poetica Christi Press Annual Competition and will be published in their anthology “Joy in the Morning” in September 2020.
Toni is a Role Model for “Books in Homes” and was a long-standing judge of the Warringah Library Services Young Writers’ Competition. Toni’s published children’s books include the novel DemiChat series (included on the NSW and South Australian Premier’s Reading Challenge Lists for Years 5 – 6 and selected readers in Years 7 – 9, 2012 – 2013). Her Picture Books were published by Little Steps Publishing: What Now Baby Bears? (2013), about animals and humans living in harmony; and, The Tree House (2014) about a little disabled girl and her older sister who together dream big dreams.
Her non-fiction book, Patrick White; Australia’s only Nobel Laureate for Literature, was published by Little Steps Publishing and released on the 1st of August, 2020.