Ipswich Festival of Children’s Literature 2011
Presenters (in alphabetical order)

Aleesah Darlison writes picture books and novels for children, both in the contemporary fiction and fantasy genres. Her books include Puggle’s Problem, Warambi, and the Totally Twins, series. Aleesah also reviews books for The Sun Herald. In 2010, along with 4 other children’s book creators Aleesah founded Literature Live! an organisation delivering literary content to classrooms across Australia and internationally through video conferencing technology.

Andy Griffiths is the author of over twenty books, including nonsense verse, badly drawn cartoons, short stories, comic novels and creative writing textbooks. Over the past 15 years Andy’s books have been New York Times bestsellers, won over 40 children’s choice awards, been adapted as a television cartoon series and sold over four million copies worldwide. 'The 13-Storey Treehouse' will be published in September. 

Angela Sunde spent her childhood in the family orchard on the outskirts of Auckland. In spring, masses of white blossoms stretched over the hills, and her favourite escape was to curl up with a book under one of the apple trees.
Awarded 3rd place in the CYA Conference 'Illustrated Picture Book' competition (2009) and short-listed (twice) for the Charlotte Duncan Award (2009), Angela’s hope is to inspire the dreams of children everywhere.

Formerly an award-winning language teacher, Angela has taught in primary, secondary and tertiary education. Her love of German fairytales led her to wonder - what if a fairytale happened to a real girl? The result was her novel, Pond Magic, published in 2010 as an Aussie Chomp with Penguin Australia.
Angela now lives in the Gold Coast hinterland with her family, a manx cat, two cockatiels and three bush rats in the compost heap.

Anne Spudvilas is one of Australia's foremost picture book illustrators.  She divides her time between painting portraits, printmaking, her work as a courtroom artist and illustrating children's book.
Her first book The Race won the Crichton Award for Illustration in 1996. Jenny Angel by Margaret Wild won CBCA Picture Book of the Year in 2000. In 2007 her work on The Peasant Prince by Li Cunxin was awarded the NSW Premiers Award, the Queensland Premiers Award, the Australian Book Industry
Award and CBCA Honour Book.  She works in a variety of mediums and has worked with some of Australia’s top children’s authors, including Isobelle Carmody, Margaret Wild and Gary Crew.

Brian Falkner was born and raised in Auckland, but is currently living on the Gold Coast. He has worked as a radio journalist, advertising copywriter, computer consultant and as a graphic designer. He is the author of several novels for children and young adults including, The Flea Thing, The Real Thing, The Super Freak and The Tomorrow Code.

His first book, The Flea Thing was originally published in New Zealand as Henry and the Flea in 2003 and become an instant success. In a review on a New Zealand radio National Programme, Kate De Goldi said 'I think the really good thing about the book is it’s incredibly persuasive writing, he's a sharp, varied, quite nuanced writer'.

Charlie Carter was born out of an idea. He started as a thought, but quickly became much more. He grew with the stories he was created to write – the Battle Boy series –becoming inseparable from them in the end.   Without Charlie Carter, the Battle Boy books would not exist.
So Charlie is more than just an alter ego. He’s an author in his own right. He may not physically exist in the normal sense, but he is still very real. He might live in my head much of the time, but when there’s a Battle Boy book to be written he takes over, fighting fit and full of ideas. I just sit back and let him do his thing. It’s a very strange feeling. 
Jekyll and Hyde? Possibly. But loads of fun.

Christine Bongers grew up with six brothers on a farm outside Biloela, in central Queensland. She has worked as a broadcast journalist on the ABC and in commercial television in Brisbane and London. Christine's debut novel Dust is a CBCA Notable Book for 2010, and her latest offering, the funny and heart-warming Henry Hoey Hobson, captures the magic and sense of empowerment that stem from learning to believe in yourself and from having people around you who believe in you too. More at www.christinebongers.com

Christopher Cheng has taught in infants and primary classes at schools across New South Wales as well as spending eight years as Education officer at Taronga Zoo in Sydney (working with both human and non-human animals). He has been a booksellers and he also worked at Purdue University (USA) developing science based educational CD-ROMs. He is now a full time author of fiction and non-fiction books for children, including picture books and historical fiction. Chris has also written the libretto for a children’s musical – Pas Christmas Star - and has a highly recommended app on the iTunes store, Monkey Business from the title Zoo You later. His other books include titles in the EyeSpy animal series, One child (illustrated by Steven Woolman) New Gold Mountain and the Melting Pot (in the My Australian Story series), 60 Classic Australian poems,  and his forthcoming picture book illustrated by Sarah Davis, Sounds Spooky.

Christopher holds a Master of Arts (Children’s Literature) and is now is a full time author writing fiction (including historical fiction), picture books and non-fiction titles. He is on the International Advisory board for the online journal First Opinions, Second Reactions about Children’s and Adolescent literature (http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/fosr/). and for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). He is also Co-Regional Advisor for the Australian chapter of the SCBWI. He is a regular presenter in schools, conferences and festivals both here and abroad.
He is the recipient of the Lady Cutler Award for services to children’s literature and in 2010 he received the SCBWI Member of the Year award. Chris is often heard to say that he has the best job in the world!

Clare McFadden is a designer and producer of arts based work for children and communities. She has worked in Community Arts at Brisbane City Council and at the State Library of Queensland where she was the Manager of The Corner, a creative space for under 8s. Clare has designed for theatre, film and music productions and her illustrations have been exhibited in group and solo shows. 
In 2010, Clare was the recipient of the Lord Mayor’s Young and Emerging Artist’s Fellowship – enabling her to investigate international best practice methods of engaging children in the arts. This year, she was a recipient of the May Gibbs Children’s Literature Trust Fellowship. The Flying Orchestra is her first book.

Deb Abela - after a trip to Africa where Deb was caught in a desert sandstorm, harassed by monkeys and thrown in jail twice, she wrote the Max Remy Superspy series. She co-authored the Jasper Zammit (Soccer Legend) series with Johnny Warren and was inspired to write The Remarkable Secret of Aurelie Bonhoffen because of her nanna’s stories about friendly ghosts. Her latest book, Grimsdon, is about a group of lost children living in a flooded city with flying machines, sneaker waves and sea monsters. www.deborahabela.com

Freya Blackwood is an illustrator of children’s books. Born in Edinburgh in 1975, Freya grew up in Orange in NSW, Australia. The daughter of a painter and an architect, she was encouraged to draw from a young age. She produced many illustrated books when at school but after completing a degree in Design (Visual Communications) at UTS she became interested in filmmaking. She worked for several years in the special effects industry in Sydney and in Wellington, New Zealand, before eventually returning to illustration.

Most of her books to date have dealt with difficult subjects, in a perceptive and sensitive manner. Some have been published in many countries now and have received several awards, including the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2010 for Harry & Hopper. Her books include Two Summers, Amy & Louis, Clancy & Millie and the Very Fine House, Harry & Hopper, Her Mother’s Face, Ivy Loves to Give and Maudie & Bear.
Freya lives back in Orange with her daughter Ivy.

Gabrielle Wang is an award-winning author who loves to write stories with a touch of fantasy. Her great grandfather came to Victoria from China during the gold rush in 1853. Some of Gabrielle’s books are ‘The Garden of Empress Cassia’, ‘The Pearl of Tiger Bay’, ‘The Hidden Monastery’, ‘A Ghost in My Suitcase’, ‘Little Paradiseand ‘The Race for The Chinese Zodiac’. When she’s not writing she likes to read, travel and go horseback riding. Her best subject at school was Art.

Her worst subject was Maths. Gabrielle’s latest books are, ‘Meet Poppy’, ‘Poppy at Summerhill’, ‘Poppy and the Thief’ and ‘Poppy Comes Home’. Gabrielle lives in Melbourne with her husband, two children, a golden cocker spaniel and a cockatiel. For more information: www.gabriellewang.com

Greg Holfeld is a Canadian-born, Adelaide-based animator and illustrator. After animating hours of television, directing dozens of commercials, creating a number of award-winning short films, and illustrating a stack of picture books, he was finally united with the medium he's always loved - comic books (aka graphic novels), for the successful "Captain Congo" series authored by Ruth Starke. See more of his work at www.panicproductions.com.au

Gus Gordon is an author and illustrator. He writes books about motorbike riding stunt chickens and dogs that live in trees. Gus lives with his wife and three kids on the Northern beaches of Sydney where he has written and illustrated over 60 books for children. His most recent book, ‘Wendy’, was a 2010 CBC Notable Book in the picture book category. He has visited over 300 hundred schools around Australia and loves speaking to kids about illustration, character design and the desire to control a wiggly line. Visit Gus at: www.gusgordon.com

James Moloney is one of Australia’s leading writers for children and young adults. His passion for story telling has seen him produce more than thirty books right across the age range from ‘seven to seventeen year-olds.’ He grew up in Brisbane, where he was more interested in playing Rugby than anything to do with books, but during teacher training he succumbed to the lure of literature. Two years teaching indigenous children led to his ground-breaking novels Dougy and Gracey which take an unflinching look at Australian racism and identity. A Bridge to Wiseman’s Cove, a study of loneliness and a young man’s attempts to redeem his family’s past is one of this country’s quiet best-sellers and widely studied in high schools.

In recent years he has branched out into humour (Black Taxi) and his fantasy stories, beginning with The Book of Lies, bring him more emails from readers than any other books. His latest book, Silvermay, is the first in a new fantasy series. 

Jeannie Baker studied art and design in the UK before settling in Australia in 1975. The turning point for her affinity with Australia was a visit to the Daintree which inspired her award-winning children's book Where the Forest Meets the Sea (1987), set in the tropical rainforest and which has sold one million copies worldwide. Her unique collages are created from many rich textures, including earth, knitted wool and feathers, which, combined with more usual artists materials, achieve a wonderful three dimensional illusion. She is the author and illustrator of numerous picture books, several of which have won Australian and international awards.

Australian Picture Book of the Year Honour Book, 2005, for "Belonging", Australian Children’s Book Council Picture Book of the Year Award, 1992, for "Window", Notable Book by the American Library Association, 1984, and short listed for the Kate Greenaway Medal, 1985, for "Home in the Sky" and a Boston Globe Horn Book Magazine Honour Book award,1988, and International Board of Young People Honour Book Award, 1990, for "Where the Forest Meets the Sea". Her latest book, "Mirror" was the winner of the Children’s category at the 2011 Indie Book Awards and also short-listed for NSW Premier's Literary Award. Jeannie was born in England but has lived in Sydney for many years. 'Mirror' has been short-listed for the 2011 CBCA Book of the Year Award - Picture Book Category.

John Heffernan wanted to be many things when it came his time to morph into an adult. He wanted to be an inventor, designing gadgets like a People-Making Machine, Hover-Boots or a Genius Cap. He wanted to be a Spartan warrior, a Viking chief called Erik Skull-Splitter, a zoo-keeper fluent in Animalese, a climber of unknown mountains – or whatever happened to be the last exciting idea to leap into his mind.
Instead, John went to university and did several degrees in useless subjects like psychology and philosophy, even lecturing in them. Then he became a farmer, with sheep and cows, horses and dogs, wombats, joeys, guinea pigs and giant jungle mice. He even married a wonderful woman and became a father with two beautiful daughters.

But then one day he morphed into an author, writing books about horses and dogs, rats and pirates, kids in war, genius mice and mad scientists, ghosts and ghouls, wizards and warriors, as well as a few serious books about growing up and families and trying to work out what life is all about. 
John reckons it’s the best thing he ever did, inventing stories around whatever exciting ideas leap into his mind. Better than growing up, that’s for sure.

Kerry Brown is an accomplished Children's Picture Book Author who loves that she has a job that is so much fun! Her mantra, Imagination is Magical! is based on the belief that everybody has the ability to break free from the grind of everyday life ... through the opening of a good book!
Kerry is also a teacher with her Masters in Education. She gains inspiration from those she teaches as well as her own two little monsters at home.
Kerry loves that children are 'raw' in their expression and acceptance of the world around them. It is this innocence that she tries to capture in her writing.

Leigh Hobbs is an artist and author best known for the children's books he has written and illustrated featuring his characters Old Tom, Mr Chicken, Horrible Harriet, Fiona The Pig and most recently Mr Badger. In 2010 Bloomsbury the prestigious UK publisher, published four of Leigh's picture books, and it is their edition of 'Mr Chicken Goes To Paris' which quickly sold over a thousand copies at The Louvre and Palace of Versailles Bookshops in Paris.

Lesley Reece is the founding Director and Chairwoman of the Fremantle Children’s Literature Centre, which she established in 1992, having raised over a million dollars to do so.
Lesley lectures regularly on Children’s and Youth Literature in Australia and overseas, served on the Judging Panel of the Western Australian Premier’s Awards (1997/1998/1999) and acts as a consultant to several curriculum and literature advisory panels. She is immensely proud of the Centre’s achievements and the esteem in which it is held both within Australia and internationally.

Lisa Hollier was born in 1978 and grew up with her two sisters in Queensland.  After receiving a degree in architecture in 2000, she went on to work as an architectural draftsman.  Eventually, Lisa became a stay at home mum, and only began writing in the hopes of developing a business in personalised children’s book publishing.  To run this business, Lisa and her sister Tracey set up a home based workshop, and while Lisa busily began writing stories Tracey took on the role of illustrator. 
After 3 years however, their business venture proved unsuccessful, and they decided to find another way to have their work published.
Lisa and Tracey’s first book Hullabazoo is a crazy and chaotic zoo adventure inspired by Lisa’s son Lochlan, who has always been fascinated by Australian wildlife.   Hullabazoo was published by Penguin Books in 2010 and is soon to be followed by another crazy and chaotic adventure story.

Lucia Masciullo has established herself as a prominent illustrator in the field of children’s book Illustration since she moved from Italy to Australia in 2007.
Upon her arrival in Australia she has collaborated with Penguin Australia and Hardie Grant Egmont, illustrating children’s stories and young adults novels.

As testament of her skills and artistic sensibility she has been chosen as illustrator for the debut illustrated book of award winning author Sonya Hartnett titled The Boy and the Toy. Lucia has subsequently worked on a second illustrated book authored by Sonya Hartnett to be published in 2011 and titled Come Down CatOne of her illustrated book, Family Forest, authored by Kim Kane, has been selected in the shortlist for the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Book of the Year 2011, Picture Book Category.

Lucia has exhibited her works in Brisbane in a number of occasions and two of her illustrations have been selected for a National exhibition to be held at the State Library of Victoria, Melbourne in 2010 - 2011. The exhibit titled Look! The art of Australian picture books today showcases the best of children book illustrations in Australia and her works will be presented among those of some of the most important names in the Illustration industry.
Lucia is co-founder of a new Digital Children’s Book Publishing Company, BlueQuoll, through which she has released in May 2011 the first independent Australian Children’s Book App for iPad and iPhone, titled Mr. Wolf and the Ginger Cupcakes.
Lynelle Westlake’s formal art training began when awarded a 3 year scholarship to the Brisbane College of Art in 1965 where she completed a Certificate of Commercial Illustration.
Following many years of travelling and working in Australia and overseas in many occupations including freelance art & design, hotel receptionist, office administrator, pub manager,  Lynelle completed a fine arts degree in 1992 and a post graduate diploma in Teaching in1993.
Since retiring from teaching in 2005, Lynelle lives in the thriving rural community of Goondiwindi where she writes and paints in her home studio.  Lynelle has presented workshops in Art & Writing in Primary Schools throughout South West Queensland and Northern NSW.  

As a former teacher specialising in Early Childhood, Lynelle is passionate about fostering early literacy skills and a love of drawing in young children.
Australia’s unique fauna provides abiding inspiration for Lynelle’s writing, painting and sculpture.
Currently Lynelle has four children’s picture books published; “Molog the Frog”, “Ornella the Owl”, “Trog the Book Frog” and “When Mackenzie Met Matilda”. 
 More information can be found on the website www.lynellezitawestlake.com.au

Mark Wilson is an international author/illustrator who lives in Frankston, Victoria. His recent picture book Angel of Kokoda, has been shortlisted in the 3rd CJ Picture Books Awards International 2011. Journey of the Sea Turtle won the 2010 Whitley Award for Children’s Literature. His recent graphic novel, My Mother’s Eyes-The Story of a Boy Soldier, became an honor book in both the 2010 CBCA Picture Book of the Year Awards, and the 2010 CBCA Eve Pownall Awards. Marks previous picture book The Last Tree, won the 2007 Whitley Awards for Children’s Literature, and his Extinction Trilogy won the 2004 Wilderness Society Award and the 2004 Whitley Award for Children’s Picture Books (series).
Other recent Picture Books include The Little Wooden horse-Children of the First Fleet (Windy Hollow Books 2010), Angel of Kokoda (Hachette Aust. 2010) and Stranded (Black Dog Books 2010). Previous Award winning picture books include Yellow-Eye, Carpet of Dreams, The Penguin Shore, Young Murphy, the Extinction Trilogy and Fortuyn’s Ghost.

Mark has a passion for Australian history and the environment, especially endangered species. These are recurring themes in both his picture books and workshops throughout Australia. His books are published in seven languages in North America, Canada, Southeast Asia and Europe.
Meredith Costain is a versatile writer whose work ranges from picture books through to novels and non‐fiction. Her books include Bed Tails, Dog Squad, A Year in Girl Hell and Musical Harriet, which was adapted for television by the ABC. Doodledum Dancing, illustrated by Pamela Allen, was a CBCA Early Childhood Honour book. Meredith is also the literary editor of national children’s magazines, Comet, Explore and Challenge. She lives in inner-city Melbourne with a menagerie of pets, who often wrangle their way into her stories and poems. Find out more at: www.meredithcostain.com
Michael Gerard Bauer’s first YA novel The Running Man won the 2005 Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Book of the Year for Older Readers and was short-listed for the NSW, Victoria and South Australian State Premiers’ Literary awards.
In 2007 his second novel, a ‘laugh out loud’ comedy entitled Don’t Call Me Ishmael! was short-listed in both the CBCA awards and the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards and won the 2007 Children’s Peace Literature Award and the 2008 South Australian Festival Award for Children’s Literature. It was also included in the 2007 White Ravens selection for Outstanding International Books for children and young adults. The sequel Ishmael and the Return of the Dugongs was a 2008 CBCA Notable book. The final book in the series Ishmael and the Hoops of Steel has just been released. Michael’s other books include, Dinosaur Knights, You Turkeys! and Just a Dog.
These days Michael is a full time writer and his books will soon be sold in around 20 countries including the USA.
Michael Salmon has been involved in graphics, Children’s literature, TV and Theatre since 1967.  He started his career with surfing cartoons and exhibitions of his psychedelic art and then joined the famous marionette troupe ‘The Tintookies’ as a trainee set designer/stage manager in 1968 (The Australian Elizabethan Theatre Trust)
Since then his work has been solely for young people both here in Australia and overseas. His many credits include his ‘Alexander Bunyip show’ (ABC TV 1978-88), pantomimes, fabric and varied merchandise designs, toy and board game invention and the writing and illustrating of 162 books for young readers.
Michael has extensively toured Australian Schools over the past 39 years. His sessions are lots of fun, with lightning fast cartoons, caricatures, silly prizes and general encouragement for Students to develop their own creativity. Many of these School visits can be seen on his web site: www.michaelsalmon.com.au
Recent trips have been up to the Gulf of Carpentaria Savannah Schools and to the remote Aboriginal community Schools on Cape York Peninsula as a guest of EDU QLD.
The Australian Government honoured his work in 2004 by printing a 32nd Centenary, special edition of his first book ‘The Monster that ate Canberra’ as a Commonwealth Publication. Every Federal Politician received a copy! The first official children's book that the Federal Government has ever produced!
In 2010 the ACT Government further recognised his work by commissioning a bronze statue of his first book character ‘Alexander Bunyip’. ‘Unveiled’ in April 2011, it stands next to the new Gungahlin Library in our Federal Capital.
Michael is also the Creator/Designer of ‘Buddy Bear’ for the Alannah and Madeline Foundation (Port Arthur 1996). The Foundation financially supports Children/Families who are victims of violence/violent crime. Currently they are running an anti-bullying campaign in TAS, VIC, and NSW Schools.
Michelle Pike is a published Illustrator who has worked with such Authors as Andrew Daddo, Sorrel Wilby, Yvonne Morrison, Selena Hanet-Hutchins and Kerry Brown.  Sought after for her unique touch of quirkiness and larrikinism, Michelle attributes her success to her “…very stupid (and often black) sense of humour…” - and her comfort with anything a little off centre.
Also a gallery artist, Michelle’s work is sought after internationally and merchandise featuring her designs are produced and sold from her now home location of the Sunshine Coast in Qld where she lives with her husband, two boys and pet groodle.

Nadia Sunde is an Internationally awarded singer/songwriter, a published children's author, music educator, ABC radio presenter, comedienne and mother of two. 'Deliciously heartwarming and soulful', she plays real music for kids and grown-ups who want to enjoy something a little more rootsy and organic. 

Nadia's song The Goat and The Goose, from her album Homespun, was awarded 3rd place in the children's category of the 2009 International Songwriting Competition. Her song Mango Tree was a semi-finalist in this years competition. The songs from Homespun also became the inspiration for 'Nadia's Wish', a live music and theatre experience for families which debuted at the State Library of Queensland in January 2010. 'Nadia's Wish' was co-written by Nadia and starred her in the lead role. Work is currently underway on a new theatre show, due for release in January 2012. 
Narelle Oliver is the author-illustrator of a number of award-winning children’s picture books including, The Best Beak in Boonaroo Bay, The Hunt, Sand Swimmers, Mermaids Most Amazing, Baby Bilby where do you sleep?, The Very Blue Thingamajig, Dancing the Boom-cha-cha Boogie, Home, Twilight Hunt, and Fox and Fine Feathers
Many of these titles have won awards and been distributed internationally. Narelle’s recent picture book, Twilight Hunt (2007) was commissioned by US publisher StarBright Books and features North American flora and fauna while her latest title, Fox and Fine Feathers (August 2009) is a contemporary fable set in Coachwood forest on the east coast of Australia. Fox and Fine Feathers was launched by the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, Quentin Bryce and was featured in her televised Australia Day Address 2010.
It has been awarded Honour Book in the Children’s Book Council of Australia Picture Book of the Year Awards, 2010. Many of Narelle’s books have been inspired by natural environments. In other titles, she has explored imaginary, historic and mathematical themes.
The linocut print medium, often combined with other media, is a special feature of the illustrations. While studying for a Bachelor of Education degree, Narelle majored in design and printmaking. Then followed several years teaching at the Qld School for the Deaf, living and breathing picture books and sign language. Narelle also tutored in Language and Children’s Literature subjects offered by the Faculty of Education at the University of Southern Qld before beginning her first picture book, Leaf Tail (1989).
Over the last 20 years, Narelle has conducted countless writing and illustrating workshops for students in places as diverse as Fremantle Children’s Literature Centre, under a bark shelter in the desert at Hart’s Range, NT, Elcho Island off Arnhem Land, Tanglin Trust International School, Singapore, and the Western Academy of Beijing. Narelle lives in inner-city Brisbane.
Oliver Phommavanh loves to make people laugh, whether it's on the page writing humour for kids or on stage as a stand-up comedian. He also shares his passion for writing with the kids he teaches at a primary school in Western Sydney. As a comedian, Oliver has appeared on stage, and on national TV and radio. He has also appeared in the anthology, Growing Up Asian in Australia. He's a die-hard Nintendo fan and cheers for the Wests Tigers! Oliver’s first book Thai-riffic! was released last year and his latest book is Con-nerd. Check out his website at http://www.oliverwriter.com
Pamela Rushby was born in Queensland more years ago than she cares to divulge. She has worked in advertising; as a pre-school teacher; and as a writer and producer of educational television, audio and multimedia.
Pam has written children's books and television scripts; hundreds of radio and TV commercials; documentaries on Queensland dinosaurs, Australian ecosystems, bilbies, the Crown of Thorns starfish and buried Chinese terracotta warriors; short stories; and freelance journalism. She has won several awards, including a Literature Board of the Australia Council grant to work on archaeological excavations in Egypt and Jordan; a Churchill Fellowship to study educational television in Canada; the Ethel Turner Prize in the NSW Premier's Literary Awards; and a bag of gold coins at a film festival in Iran.
Pam lives in Brisbane with her husband and six visiting scrub turkeys. She has two children (plus son-in-law and two gorgeous grandchildren).
She is passionately interested in children's books and television, ancient history and Middle Eastern food. Her website is www.pamelarushby.com
Richard Newsome lives in Brisbane and has worked as a journalist for daily newspapers, radio and TV; as a consultant with one of the world’s foremost strategy consultancies; and as communications director of a multinational media company. Richard’s debut novel, The Billionaire’s Curse, won the inaugural Text Prize for Children’s and Young Adult writing as well as New Zealand’s oldest literary prize, the Esther Glen Medal. The final book in the Billionaire’s series, The Mask of Destiny, will be published in October 2011.
Robin Morrow is national president of IBBY Australia. She pioneered children’s bookselling in NSW by founding The Children’s Bookshop. She has taught children’s literature at several universities and in many inservice programs, has worked as a children’s publisher, and served on judging panels including that of the CBCA awards. As a reviewer and commentator she maintains a passion for picture books. Her doctoral thesis was on the Australian picture book, but she has also researched picture books from other countries at the Internationale Jugendbibliothek, Munich.

Sally Rippin was born in Darwin, but grew up mainly in South-East Asia. Now Sally lives in Melbourne, where she writes and illustrates for children of all ages, as well as speaking regularly in schools and festivals here and overseas. Sally has over forty children’s books published, many of them award winning. Her most recent titles include the Billie B Brown series and Angel Creek.
Sarah Davis began freelancing as an illustrator in 2005, after a move to Sydney from New Zealand put her teaching career on hold. 
In 2008 she won the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s 2009 Crichton Award for her first picture book, the beautiful, haunting Mending Lucille, by J.R. Poulter  (Lothian/Hachette Livre). In 2010, her third book Fearless, by award-winning author Colin Thompson (ABC Books/Harper Collins), was shortlisted for the 2010 Book of the Year Awards, and won the CBCA Children’s Choice Junior Judges award, and the YABBA, KOALA, COOL and KROC awards. 
A recent release, Marmaduke Duck and the Marmalade Jam, by Juliet MacIver (Scholastic 2010), has been shortlisted for the New Zealand Post Book of the Year award, and the SCBWI Crystal Kite award. She is currently working on books for  Walker Books, Random House, HarperCollins, Scholastic, Gecko Press and American Girl. 
Sarah has no formal art training, and as a self-taught illustrator she is constantly on the hunt for more information, better methods, or cunning new tricks. 
Sheryl Gwyther is a Brisbane children’s author who writes novels, school plays, chapter books and magazine articles. She also visits schools and libraries. Sheryl is also the blog host of this year's Ipswich Festival of Children's Literature - check it out on http://ipswichkidslitfest.blogpot.com
Her adventure novel for older children, Secrets of Eromanga is set on an outback dinosaur fossil dig. Her chapter books, Princess Clown and Charlie and the Red Hot Chilli Pepper are popular transition books for young readers. Sheryl’s short story, Scaredy Crow is in the current Junior Journal, a school magazine that goes to New Zealand and South Pacific primary schools. Her short story, Corn Dolly Dead was included in black dog books’ Short and Scary anthology.
This month, Sheryl's school play, Anansi and the Sky God's Stories is in The NSW School Magazine's September issue. The play is based on Gail E Haley's award-winning retelling of the African legend. 
Sheryl’s writing awards include two Australian Society of Author Mentorships and a May Gibbs Children’s Literature Trust Fellowship.
Sue Whiting started her working life as a primary school teacher with a special interest in literacy education and children’s literature. One school holiday, Sue put on a dinosaur costume and went to work as a storyteller. It was then she realised that telling stories was the job for her. 
In 2005 Sue left teaching to pursue a career in children’s book publishing and is now Publishing Manager at Walker Books Australia.
She is also a successful children’s author who has written more than 60 books, including picture books, chapter books and novels for teens. Her latest books include A Strange Little Monster, illustrated by Stephen Michael King, Freaky ( novel 8+) and Get a Grip, Cooper Jones  (novel 10+). The dinosaur costume is now moth-eaten and mildewy, but Sue has a bag full of others …
Susanne Gervay is an award winning author, recognized for her writing on social justice for youth & adult literature. He story Days of Thailand sits with stories by David Malouf, Sir Salman Rushdie, Thomas Kenealley in Fear Factor: Terror Incognito opening discussion of terrorism in narrative fiction, as a pathway towards peace.
Susanne is part of the Kiribati Pacific Calling Fact Finding Delegation to the atoll islands. She was invited to represent Australia with her story To East Timor –  from Australia  - in a UNESCO and IBBY sponsored illustrated anthology Peace Story that includes 22 countries, 22 authors, 22 illustrators. 
Her young adult novel Butterflies is recognized as outstanding youth literature on disability, while I Am Jack is a rite-of-passage fiction on school bullying adapted into a play by premiere theatre company Monkey Baa Theatre for Young People. 
Her new youth fiction Always Jack reaches young people families and community dealing with breast cancer. It is the first time the Cancer Council nationally and the National Breast & Ovarian Cancer Centre have endorsed youth fiction. 
Susanne’s books are endorsed by numerous organizations including the Room to Read bringing literacy to the world, Children’s Hospital Westmead, Life Education Australia, The Alannah & Madeline Foundation. Her last young adult novel, set against the background of youth music in a unique combination of text and music, is endorsed by WAYS youth outreach.
Susanne Gervay has been invited to speak nationally and internationally from New York, Delhi, Ubud Bali, Byron Bay, Somerset, Beijing Literature Festival to Bologna Book Fair. She is co-head of SCBWI Australia & New Zealand, chairs The Sydney Children’s Writers & Illustrators Network at The Hughenden, an Australia Day Ambassador, author ambassador for Room to Read, patron of Monkey Baa Theatre for Young People, is on the board of the NSW Writers Centre and has been awarded the UTS Outstanding Professional Achievement Award and The Lady Cutler Award for Distinguished Services to Children’s Literature. www.sgervay.com   www.sgervay.com/blog
Tanya Batt is a storyteller, teacher and published writer. She regularly works through out New Zealand and Australia and has been invited to share her work in the USA, Africa, UK, Europe and Asia. Her storytelling work is characterized lively interaction and her use of music, movement and sumptuous frocks…..the weaving and wearing of stories.
She is regarded as one of NZ’s top storytellers and is the director of the ‘Once Upon an Island’ Waiheke Storytelling Festival and the unique Once Upon an Island Story Centre.
As a trained teacher with qualifications in the areas of education and performing arts she is highly sought after for her professional development workshops for teachers/ caregivers. Her teaching manuals in the areas of dance, drama and storytelling are regularly used for teacher training.

As a writer, Tanya Batt specializes in the creation of picture books, folk tale collections and audio recordings for the young and young at heart. Her stories have both a magical and quirky quality.
Tanya Batt believes that delight and curiosity form the basis for enjoyable and effective life long learning. She is committed to an enquiry centred approach to learning which welcomes the valuable contributions that children make from their own experiences.
“Tanya Batt is a spellbinder. In all my years of telling and listening to stories I have never heard anyone who can match her. Only a few story tellers can send shivers of joy up a child's spine.  Tanya Batt is the best of those who can.” Paul Jennings, Multi Award winning Australian Author
For more information please visit www.imagined-worlds.net
Tracey Roper was born in 1982, and grew up in living in Queensland.  Following year 12, Tracey worked as an administration officer with the State Revenue Office in Brisbane.  After 5 years of office work, Tracey left to start a business in personalised children’s book publishing along with her sister, Lisa.  It was quite literally over a cup of coffee that Lisa decided to write the stories and Tracey decided to try her hand at illustrating.  With no background in the visual arts, Tracey learned to paint for the sole purpose of illustrating these personalised books.  
The business was unsuccessful, however Tracey and Lisa decided to move forward with the only two things that seemed to be working; writing and illustrating.
In 2006, Tracey began taking art classes with wildlife artist Philip Farley, and it was through these classes that she developed a passion for painting in a hyper-realistic style.  Lisa and Tracey’s first book, Hullabazoo was published in 2010, and they are currently busily at work on the next book. 

Tristan Bancks tells stories for the page and screen. He has a background as an actor and television presenter in Australia and the UK. His short films have won a number of awards and have screened widely in festivals and on TV. Tristan has written several books for kids and teens, including the brand new Galactic Adventures, First Kids in Space (UQP, June 2011) and My Life and Other Stuff I Made Up (Random House, July 2011). He is also author of the Mac Slater, Coolhunter books (Random House) released in Australia and the US, and illustrated series, Nit Boy (Laguna Bay Publishing), about everybody's favourite mini-beasts. Nit Boy is currently being developed for television.
Tristan's Young Adult novel, it's yr life (Random House) was co-written via email between Byron Bay and L.A. with actress / author, Tempany Deckert. Tristan is saving for his ticket to space. He loves telling inspiring, fast-moving stories for young people. www.tristanbancks.com