South Australian-born Catherine Bauer is a journalist and awarded children’s writer who grew up in the suburbs of Adelaide. She has worked as a news and political journalist and features writer for various newspapers and publications, as a media and communications adviser and is now working with the State Theatre Company South Australia.
While she has written and published children’s plays and had two picture books published in 2018, Catherine lists her three sons as her life’s greatest work.
She grew up reading the classics that lined her parents’ well-stocked home library. She wrote, illustrated and submitted her first picture book at the age of eight and received a gently worded rejection letter – thus igniting her love for writing and determination to one day see her creative work in print.
Apart from joy and delight, Catherine aims for her stories to spark all or one of the following three reactions in readers: ‘that’s me’; ‘I wish that was me’ or ‘I’m glad that’s not me’.
Her parents were both great story tellers and among her favourites were the ones in which her father recounted wonderful stories about finding joy in small things, his enthralling adventures and often hardships of a childhood growing up in WWII Germany.
Following the first two titles in the series, Australia Remembers (Australia Remembers 1 with Allison Paterson, Australia Remembers 2 with Allison Paterson), Australia Remembers 3: Len Waters, Boundless and Born to Fly, has been released in 2021, and published by Big Sky Publishing.
Kate is a writer living in rural Victoria with her partner and two children. She also lives with a bouncy dog, a haughty cat and chooks with heads like pom-poms.
Eons ago, Kate trained as a naturopath and still can’t go past the smell of dried herbs without swooning. Nowadays, she works at a yoga and dance studio with young children, and writes about the everyday happenings of life. She loves long walks and admiring nature’s treasures like seedpods, stones and fallen bird nests. Kate adores Autumn and patiently waits for its return every year.
Kate’s debut picture book The Glint of Gold is illustrated by Patricia Ward and published by Little Pink Dog Books.
Kerry Malone is a Canberra-based children’s author. Her picture book You can do it Joey! was released in 2015 and her new chapter book, Sophie Makes New Friends is now available.
She has been involved in various literary events including the Goulburn Reader Writer Festival. She has spoken at ACT Branch events of the Children’s Book Council of Australia and Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.
Sophie’s stories were inspired by some of Kerry’s experiences. She first started wearing glasses when she was five years old and her glasses weren’t as cool as Sophie’s. Without her glasses Kerry couldn’t see much and spent a lot of time lost at the beach.
Kerry writes her books in libraries and cafes. Her favourite cafes are the ones which sell doughnuts.
Kerry is happy to visit schools, libraries and community organisations to share her story and the inspiration behind her books and her indie publishing adventure.
Penny Macoun was born in Sydney, Australia, and has been writing since when her story about a funnel web spider was printed in a school newsletter. Ever since, Penny has loved the ‘other worlds’ that words create, and hopes to continue to create these worlds for many years to come. Gorkle is her first book, and her second picture book, Rollo’s Wet Surprise, was published in 2021. When she is not writing or editing, Penny dabbles in various forms of visual arts and enjoys being in the garden.
Penny was a member of an amateur theatre for 9 years. During this time, she was a stage manager for children’s shows and standard plays, actor, prompt and committee member for three years, where she was front of house co-ordinator, newsletter editor and social secretary. When she’s not writing she is a casual primary school teacher.
Penny has also travelled extensively, having visited the UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Hong Kong, New Zealand and parts of Australia. She hopes to continue her exploration of the world when it is safe to do so.
Skye Hughes was born in Adelaide but spent much of her childhood travelling around Australia in a caravan with her three younger siblings and parents. She is a school teacher, youth program facilitator and big fan of Nutella donuts. Skye currently lives in Melbourne and when she isn’t writing children’s books, looking after her house plants or teaching young people, you will find her travelling the globe and connecting with people from all walks of life. It is these connections that inspire her to keep growing, learning and creating beautiful memories.
Victorian-based school teacher and youth mentor Skye Hughes decided that something more needed to be done for kids’ during the current COVID-19 pandemic. She said, “I couldn’t sit idle and watch so many children struggle with social isolation and unanswered questions. I had to do something. I knew the power of storytelling and decided that this was the positive force I would use! ”
Armed with a desire to ease kids’ feelings of isolation and fear amidst the current Victorian Stage 4 lockdown, Skye wrote We’re All In This Together and deliberately tackled the issues children asked about the coronavirus and being away from loved ones, friends and even school.
Wendy Haynes has completed a Diploma in Creative Writing at Southern Cross University. Her writing focuses on middle-grade fantasy, historical, and contemporary stories for children, picture books, junior fiction, and YA.
Her first picture book Hayden’s Bedtime, was published in March 2019 and is on the 2019 NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge list. Her new book The Door in The Woods: Book 1 Hollow Woods a middle-grade fantasy fiction series is due out in 2020.
She believes that having a regular writing practice, and understand the device at your disposal, is the key to not only completing a story but in building the skills required to produce a worthy manuscript.
She was a judge for the Port Writer’s In-house competition for the creative non-fiction category in 2018, and one of the judges of the fiction category in 2019. She was one of the judges for the CYA Competition for 2019 and a board member for Hunter Writer’s Centre.
Wendy won first prize for her short story Going Nowhere, at Port Writers In-house competition 2018, and enjoys helping and motivating writers and has developed a mentorship program to help writers tell stories. Armed with a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, she conducts writing workshops on and offline through her business. http://writingforkeeps.com.au/
Being part of a writing community Wendy has volunteered for the roles of the President, Vice President, and Treasurer of Port Writers Inc, a not for profit local writing group bringing writing workshops and presentations, as well as writing exercises to the group.