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Speaker Type: Curriculum Specialist

Tim Bain

Curriculum Specialist, Illustrator

Tim Bain is a playwright and TV writer, specialising in comedy, kids and animation. His credits include Rove, Bob the Builder, Fireman Sam, Get Ace, Dennis & Gnasher and Disney’s upcoming Boyster.

» Read more about Tim Bain

Thomas Caldwell

Author, Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Thomas Caldwell is a freelance writer, broadcaster and public speaker who specialises in film criticism and educational writing on film. He is the author of the secondary school textbook Film Analysis Handbook, he writes the film criticism blog Cinema Autopsy and he reviews films for the Breakfasters on Melbourne independent community radio station Triple R (3RRR 102.7FM). He also co-hosts the Triple R film criticism podcast Plato’s Cave, regularly reviews films for The Big Issue and is one of the film and television columnists for Killings, the Kill Your Darlings blog.

» Read more about Thomas Caldwell

Fiona Capp

Author, Curriculum Specialist

Fiona Capp is the internationally published author of three works of non-fiction including That Oceanic Feeling, a memoir about her love for the sea and surfing. She is also the author of three novels – Night Surfing, Last of the Sane Days and Musk & Byrne. Her most recent book is part memoir, part journey through the landscapes which inspired Australian poet Judith Wright, My Blood’s Country.

» Read more about Fiona Capp

Bec Kavanagh

Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Bec Kavanagh is a reviewer, freelance writer & YA fiction specialist. Bec founded A Thousand Words Festival, a festival which celebrated and encouraged the reading and writing of young adult fiction and now takes that knowledge and passion for books directly into schools where she can share more book love with more people! She has appeared at the Melbourne Writers Festival and AussieCon4 (the 68th World Science Fiction Convention), volunteers for Pigeons (a literacy organisation making exciting work in primary schools) and is polishing up her first manuscript.

» Read more about Bec Kavanagh

John Kilner

Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant, Journalist

John Kilner is a well known expert in the fields of media issues, writing analysis and persuasive writing. He worked for The Age for nineteen years, much of that time for the Education supplement.

» Read more about John Kilner

Pelissa Tsilimidos-Thorne

Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Pelissa Tsilimidos-Thorne (B.A., Dip. Ed., MA. Ed.) is a senior English teacher with 25 years’ experience. She holds a research Masters in Education (Film as Text) from Monash University and has written for various educational journals and books.

» Read more about Pelissa Tsilimidos-Thorne

Ellie Marney

Author, Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Ellie Marney is a teacher, and author of the highly-awarded Young Adult crime trilogy, the Every series (Every Breath, Every Word, Every Move), published locally and overseas. In 2015, Every Breath (Allen & Unwin, 2013) was named by ALIA (Australian Library Information Association) as one of the top ten most-borrowed YA books in libraries nationwide.

Ellie has helped spearhead a campaign to promote and advocate for Australian YA literature, #LoveOzYA, and hosts an online book club (#LoveOzYAbookclub) to encourage more engagement with local YA stories. She is an Ambassador for the Stella Prize Schools Program, and is a regular speaker at schools, events and festivals.

Ellie lives in regional north-central Victoria with her partner (also a teacher) and their four sons.  She likes jumping in the dam on a hot night, all things Sherlock, and the occasional spot of remedial chain-sawing.

» Read more about Ellie Marney

Josh Nelson

Author, Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Josh Nelson (BCA Hons, PhD) is a writer, academic, broadcaster and filmmaker. He has worked as a lecturer at The University of Melbourne, Monash University and Victoria University, and has extensive experience presenting to secondary schools on a number of film and media-related topics.

» Read more about Josh Nelson

Hannie Rayson

Author, Corporate, Curriculum Specialist, Speaking Out

Hannie Rayson is a multi-award winning playwright who has a reputation for topical complex dramas written with wit and insight. She is an accomplished public speaker – funny, incisive and thoughtful.

» Read more about Hannie Rayson
Marissa Pinkas

Marissa Pinkas

Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Marissa Pinkas is an experienced educator with 20 years of dedication in varied educational environments in South Africa, Western Australia and Victoria. Currently she is completing her Masters in Education at the University of Melbourne, specialising in Collaborative Learning. Marissa is an expert on the Context section of the VCE English curriculum.

» Read more about Marissa Pinkas

Nicholas Jones

Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant, Illustrator

Nicholas Jones is a contemporary visual artist specialising in book sculpture. Nicholas is available for different kinds of events including workshops, literary festivals and artist residencies.

» Read more about Nicholas Jones

Skye Melki-Wegner

Author, Curriculum Specialist

Skye is the author of YA fantasy books such as the Chasing the Valley trilogy and The Hush. She is an enthusiastic speaker who offers a variety of talks and writing workshops designed to spark students’ imaginations. Skye is the author of YA fantasy books such as the Chasing the Valley trilogy and The Hush.

» Read more about Skye Melki-Wegner

Jacqueline Harvey

Author, Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Jacqueline Harvey is the author of 27 novels for younger readers and a Children’s Book Council of Australia award winning picture book. Her bestselling Alice-Miranda and Clementine Rose series’ are published internationally and have garnered various short listings and awards. Jacqueline travels widely, speaking and teaching in Australia and overseas.

» Read more about Jacqueline Harvey

Jake Wilson

Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant, Journalist

Jake Wilson is a freelance writer whose film reviews appear weekly in The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and other Fairfax Media publications.  His book Mad Dog Morgan, a critical study of the film of the same name, was published in 2015 as part of the Australian Screen Classics series.

» Read more about Jake Wilson

Kate Mildenhall

Author, Curriculum Specialist, Education Consultant

Kate Mildenhall is a writer and educator who has worked in schools, at the State Library of Victoria and has volunteered with Teachers Across Borders in Cambodia. Her debut novel, Skylarking, based on the true story of best friends growing up on a remote Cape in 1880s Australia, was published in 2016.

» Read more about Kate Mildenhall