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Audience: Online - Virtual Visits

Asphyxia

Author, Entertainer, Online - Virtual Visits, Storyteller/Performer

Asphyxia is the author of the magical series, The Grimstones. She is an experienced motivational speaker and loves to inspire people to be more creative and open-minded. She is an avid art-journaler and generously shares her process to help others benefit from this amazing life tool. Asphyxia is also a Deaf activist, sharing details of Deaf experience. She handcrafted her Grimstone family of puppets and their world from upcycled junk, and has since toured the world with the acclaimed, award winning theatre show, The Grimstones. Now Asphyxia is ready to inspire students to create their own art journals and miniature worlds from ordinary household rubbish. Check out her free online Auslan (sign language) course at www.asphyxia.com.au.

» Read more about Asphyxia

Deborah Abela

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Deborah trained as a teacher before producing and writing children’s TV at Network Ten. She has written over 25 novels, including the Max Remy and Jasper Zammit (Soccer Legend) series, Grimsdon and New City, about kids living in a climate-changed world. Teresa: A New Australian is a migration story inspired by Deb’s dad who made the journey from Europe to Australia after the devastation of WW2. The Stupendously Spectacular Spelling Bee and the sequel, The Most Marvellous Spelling Bee Mystery is about a shy brilliant speller, whose family encourage her to enter the world’s greatest bee. Her first picture book is, Wolfie An Unlikely Hero. Deb is a proud ambassador for the literacy charity Room to Read.

» Read more about Deborah Abela

Luke Atkins

Corporate, Inspirational Speaker, Online - Virtual Visits, Speaking Out

Luke Atkins is an ultra-endurance runner and personal safety expert. Luke has represented Australia in both taekwondo and endurance running competing all over the world from Mongolia to the USA.

Luke seamlessly draws the link between the mental toughness required to run for more than 24 hours non-stop and the daily grind. His concept that life is an endurance race has proven to be especially valuable for VCE students and corporate groups.

As a sponsored athlete in the Under Armour Australia team in Worlds Toughest Mudder and the General Manager of Hall’s Taekwondo his ideas on leadership and team work are invaluable.

As a martial arts instructor for over 15 years Luke has developed structured personal safety sessions for schools and corporate audiences.

» Read more about Luke Atkins

Tristan Bancks

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Tristan Bancks tells stories for the page and screen. His books for kids and teens include Two Wolves, The Fall and the Tom Weekly series. Two Wolves won Honour Book in the 2015 Children’s Book Council of Australia Awards and was shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards. It also won the YABBA and KOALA Children’s Choice Awards, as did his latest thriller, The Fall. Detention, a gripping new novel about a daring escape and a lockdown in a school, is out July 2019.

Tristan is currently working with producers to develop several of his books for the screen. He’s excited by the future of storytelling and inspiring others to create. You can connect with him, learn more about his books, play games, watch videos and help him try to change the world at www.tristanbancks.com.

» Read more about Tristan Bancks

Bernard Caleo

Author, Illustrator, Online - Virtual Visits, Storyteller/Performer

Bernard Caleo is a performer, comic book maker, and comic book communicator.

» Read more about Bernard Caleo

Sue deGennaro

Author, Illustrator, Online - Virtual Visits

Sue deGennaro is an author and an illustrator. She has illustrated 20 picture books, and is the author and illustrator of The Pros and Cons of Being A Frog (shortlist for the CBCA 2013 Early Childhood Prize), Eddie Frogbert and her newest picture book Missing Marvin released May 2018. Sue’s illustrations are quirky and infectiously funny. Sue has worked in many careers (including confectionery, circuses and home renovations!), and now (between making books) she often teaches writing & illustration.

To watch the book trailer for Sue’s charming picture book, Missing Marvin, please click here.

» Read more about Sue deGennaro

Nick Earls

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Nick Earls is the author of twenty-six books for adults, teenagers and children. Two of his novels have been adapted into feature films, and five have become stage plays. His books have won awards in Australia, the UK and US. He has a PhD in creative writing from the University of Queensland.

» Read more about Nick Earls

Brian Falkner

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Brian is an award-winning international author and writing coach. He is a highly sought-after speaker in schools around Australia, the US and New Zealand. His infectious enthusiasm, humour and energy make every appearance a popular and memorable one. He is the author of more than thirteen novels for children and young adults, published in fifteen countries in seven languages. His most recent YA novel, Battlesaurus: Rampage at Waterloo has been shortlisted for the 2016 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards.

» Read more about Brian Falkner

Fiona Harris

Corporate, Entertainer, Inspirational Speaker, Online - Virtual Visits, Speaking Out, Storyteller/Performer

Fiona has been writing and performing for Australian stages and screens for many years. She wrote and co-starred on the ABC sketch comedy show, Flipside, as well as on channel nine’s sketch comedy series, Comedy Inc – The Late Shift series 5 and on all three series of the Network Ten sketch comedy series SkitHouse.  She has also written and directed numerous shows for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival.

» Read more about Fiona Harris

Jack Heath

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Jack Heath is the bestselling author of more than twenty action-packed books. He wrote his first novel in high school, and it was published while he was still a teenager. Since then his work has been translated into several languages, shortlisted for many awards and optioned for film and television. His enthusiastic presentations have helped thousands of kids get hooked on reading.

» Read more about Jack Heath

Lili Wilkinson

Author, Education Consultant, Inspirational Speaker, Online - Virtual Visits

Lili Wilkinson is a reader and writer of YA literature. She is the author of nine books for teenagers, and has a PhD in Creative Writing.

» Read more about Lili Wilkinson

George Ivanoff

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

George Ivanoff is the author over 80 books for young people, including many education titles. He is best known for his You Choose books — a series of interactive books where the reader gets to make key decisions about how the story progresses. He is also author of the Gamers trilogy — teen novels set inside a computer game world. His books appear on both the Victorian and NSW Premiers’ Reading Challenge booklists. He enjoys speaking to all age levels, from primary school students through to adults.

» Read more about George Ivanoff

Toni Jordan

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Toni Jordan is the author of four novels. The international best-seller Addition was a Richard and Judy Book Club pick and was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award. Fall Girl was published internationally and has been optioned for film, and Nine Days was awarded Best Fiction at the 2012 Indie Awards, was shortlisted for the ABIA Best General Fiction award and was named in Kirkus Review’s top 10 Historical Novels of 2013. Our Tiny, Useless Hearts was shortlisted for the Voss Literary Award and longlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award. Toni has been widely published in newspapers and magazines and teaching creative writing at Faber Academy. Her most recent novel, The Fragments, was published in November 2018.

» Read more about Toni Jordan

Melissa Keil

Author, Inspirational Speaker, Online - Virtual Visits

Melissa Keil’s young adult novels have been published around the world, and have been described as ‘humorous, heartfelt and angst-y romance with the potential to break the gender barrier’. When she is not writing, she can be found immersed in other people’s manuscripts in her day job as a children’s book editor.

» Read more about Melissa Keil

Marc McBride

Illustrator, Online - Virtual Visits

Marc McBride has illustrated over fifty book covers and countless magazines, as well as producing artwork for advertising campaigns. He has a solid design background in both advertising and film, and won the West Australian Film and Television Award for Best Art Director. Marc has had work exhibited with the New York Society of Illustrators. He is best known for his illustrations in the Deltora Quest series, written by Emily Rodda.

 

» Read more about Marc McBride

Sally Rippin

Author, Illustrator, Online - Virtual Visits

Sally Rippin was born in Darwin, but grew up mainly in South-East Asia. As a young adult she lived in China for three years, studying traditional Chinese painting. Sally has over seventy books published, many of them award-winning, including two novels for young adults. Her work includes the highly acclaimed Polly and Buster trilogy and the popular Billie B Brown and Hey Jack! books, which became the highest selling series for 6-8 year olds in Australia within the first year of their release. Sally is Australia’s highest selling female author and her books have sold more than 5 million copies in 14 languages. 

Sally is a popular presenter in schools and at literary festivals both in Australia and overseas and has a regular program on 3RRR interviewing children’s authors and industry professionals. She is a passionate ambassador for the 100 Story Building, Dymocks Childrens’ Charities and also the Australian Reading Hour. Recently, she and Hardie Grant Egmont have collaborated on a weekly program of book-based activities for kids at home at www.sallyrippin.com

» Read more about Sally Rippin
Michael Pryor

Michael Pryor

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Best-selling author Michael Pryor has published more than twenty books and fifty short stories. He is one of Australia’s leading fantasy writers. Michael has been shortlisted six times for the Aurealis Awards (including for Blaze of Glory and Heart of Gold), has been nominated for a Ditmar award, and five of his books have been CBCA Notable Books, including Word of Honour.

» Read more about Michael Pryor

Oliver Phommavanh

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

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.

» Read more about Oliver Phommavanh

Adrian Beck

Author, Online - Virtual Visits, Storyteller/Performer

Adrian Beck is the co-author of the best-selling kids’ series Kick it to Nick, with AFL Hall of Fame inductee Shane Crawford. Part-time TV producer / part-time writer, Adrian uses both skill sets to entertain with lively, humorous and interactive sessions on writing, working in television and footy.

» Read more about Adrian Beck

Nova Weetman

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Nova Weetman wrote her first book at 12. A dystopian story about jelly eating, it’s predictably unpublished. From there, she honed her story writing skills in the world of film and TV, before returning to the thing she loves most – writing prose. Now she writes YA novels and middle fiction, and short non-fiction and fiction for various literary magazines and online publications.

» Read more about Nova Weetman

Ailsa Wild

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Ailsa Wild is a whip-cracker who ran away from the circus to write stories. She is an author, performer and community artist who loves collaboration. Ailsa is known for her Squishy Taylor series for 6-10 year olds, about the adventures of daredevil, mystery-solving Squishy (Hardie Grant Egmont), which has now been published in the US, the UK, Spain, and Brazil. The first book in her new series, The Naughtiest Pixie (Hardie Grant Egmont) published in July 2019 is about a cheeky, greedy little pixie who can’t stop getting into mischief. Ailsa is also the lead writer of the Small Friends Books series: science adventures starring microbes, molecules and mucus, where the bacteria are the heroes (co-published by CSIRO Publishing and Scale Free Network).

Ailsa’s first graphic novel The Invisible War (with Scale Free Network) was selected as a ‘Notable of 2017’ by the Children’s Book Council of Australia and won Most Outstanding Educational Resource at the 2017 Australian Educational Publishing Awards. The Invisible War was just released in the USA by Lerner Books, with Korean and Arabic versions scheduled for release in 2020.

Ailsa’s work has appeared in Meanjin, The Monthly, ABC online, #METOO: stories from the Australian movement (Picador) and on stages across Australia. She has spoken at many literary festivals including Melbourne Writers Festival, World Science Festival Brisbane, Ipswich StoryArts Festival. She has also guest lectured at several universities and presented at more than 200 schools around Australia. She has a Masters of Creative Media (creative writing) from RMIT and has collaborated with scientists, musicians, children, nurses and circus performers.

She often reads past her bedtime.

» Read more about Ailsa Wild

Tim Harris

Author, Online - Virtual Visits, Storyteller/Performer

Tim Harris is the bestselling author of several laugh-out-loud series for kids, including Toffle Towers, Mr Bambuckle’s Remarkables and Exploding Endings. A former primary school teacher of 15 years, his stories are filled with quirky scenarios, loveable characters and plenty of imagination. Tim’s ‘humour with heart’ writing style has seen his books receive multiple awards, including two KOALA Honour Books (2017 and 2019) and a CBCA Notable (2018). His books have been published in Australia and the USA, and have been translated into numerous languages.

An advocate for creativity and short stories, Tim’s presentations and workshops are dynamic and entertaining. He is a sought-after presenter, having worked in hundreds of schools across Australia.

» Read more about Tim Harris

Mark Smith

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

In his YA fiction, Mark combines his love of the outdoors (surfing, mountain biking, travelling) with his experience as a teacher in a residential campus on Victoria’s west coast. He believes strongly in the resilience and adaptability of young people when they’re confronted with new and challenging situations.

Mark’s second novel, Wilder Country, is the winner of the 2018 Indie Book Award for Young Adults.

» Read more about Mark Smith

Steven Herrick

Author, Online - Virtual Visits, Poet, Storyteller/Performer

Now taking bookings for 2020.

Steven Herrick is one of Australia’s most popular poets for children and teenagers. His books have twice won the NSW Premier’s Literary Award and have been shortlisted for the CBCA Book of the Year Award on eight occasions. His verse-novel ‘the simple gift’ has sold over 150,000 copies worldwide and is regularly set as a text in high schools.

» Read more about Steven Herrick

Gabriel Evans

Author, Illustrator, Online - Virtual Visits

Now taking bookings for 2020.

Gabriel Evans is an energetic children’s book illustrator and author of over twenty books – with two CBCA Notables for titles he has illustrated.

He is a dynamic and engaging speaker, giving interactive sessions on the art of creating picture books. He travels Australia talking to small people and big people.

» Read more about Gabriel Evans

Chris Kennett

Author, Illustrator, Online - Virtual Visits

Chris Kennett is an illustrator/author of picture books and junior fiction.

After writing and illustrating his first two picture books in 2011-12, Chris has gone on to illustrate for the STAR WARS franchise and a variety of Kid Lit junior novels.

His latest series “Noah and Blue’s Zooniverse”, with author Nova Weetman, is a fun and wacky adventure series for younger readers. Chris has also worked in the animation industry on and off for the past 10 years as an animator and character designer.

» Read more about Chris Kennett

Nat Amoore

Author, Online - Virtual Visits, Podcaster

Nat Amoore is a kid’s writer who is passionate about encouraging kids to read and write and explore their imagination without boundaries. She is all about big ideas, big laughs and big fun.

» Read more about Nat Amoore

Caz Goodwin

Author, Online - Virtual Visits

Caz Goodwin is an award-winning author who writes picture books, short stories, poetry and junior fiction for children. Her work has been published internationally and illustrated by Gus Gordon, Ashley King, Kerry Millard, Loo Joo Hong and others. She is also head of the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators in Victoria.

Caz’s latest book, Lazy Daisy, is the first in a series of picture books to be published by Little Hare, an imprint of Hardie Grant Egmont. Caz is known for her ability to engage and delight young children with her stories and puppets. She is also an entertaining speaker for adult audiences.

» Read more about Caz Goodwin

Way Back When Historians

Historian, Online - Virtual Visits

Way Back When Consulting Historians is a team of four professional historians: Sarah Rood, Katherine Sheedy, Lucy Bracey and Fiona Poulton. They work with a range of clients – from schools to local councils and community organisations – on many different projects, including books, exhibitions, oral history projects and digital histories. Way Back When is passionate about uncovering and telling stories, and helping communities make connections to the past that inform and give meaning to the present.

» Read more about Way Back When Historians