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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.
I was born in Sydney, but I’ve lived in Canberra since I was nine. This may be why so many of my characters turn out to be government spies.
My previous professions include fry cook, music teacher, web developer, street magician, tech support agent, debt collector, and rock star. None of these jobs is as much fun as writing.
An interviewer once asked about the theme of “breaking glass” in my novels. I’d never thought of it as a “theme” before – it’s just something that happens a lot because characters keep getting thrown through windows!
I love being able to meet the writers who I admired growing up. Chatting with Matthew Reilly, Bret Easton Ellis, Isobelle Carmody, Jeff Lindsay and John Marsden were definite career highlights.
My books are published in Australia, the USA, Canada, and New Zealand. From late 2011 they are also available in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
I love everything about books – reading them, writing them, and talking about them. I also love making music, dancing, and watching magic tricks (but not in combination).
You might have! I run a pretty popular YouTube channel, and I’m on TV from time to time. It turns out that game shows are a lot of fun, but only if you’re bad at the games.
Thanks for the opportunity! You can find teachers notes for LIARS: The Truth App here. But more fun: I can never remember my shoe size when I go bowling, I speak tourist Russian, and I changed my ringtone to a coughing sound so I don’t have to turn my phone off when I go to the movies.
Jack wasn’t afraid to make a fool of himself in front of the kids and was able to back up four sessions in a row with high energy. The teachers really loved some of his writing tips too, especially when he spoke about editing your writing. Students enjoyed the mini workshop element Jack brought to the second half of his talk. It was interactive and used zoom chat function so all were involved.
The entire week was an excellent introduction to our unit and the students were definitely excited and inspired by [Jack’s] work. They’re currently busily working on their own narratives and bursting with ideas. Particular thanks for braving the elements on Friday for what was probably our coldest ever Mystery Tour – it was such a treat for the students to be able to go on an excursion at all this year, and [Jack’s] presence was an important part of its success.
We very much enjoyed our author visit with Jack Heath on Monday. He is an absolutely hilarious presenter and shared lots of his writing tips and tricks with the children. Many students left the sessions inspired to write and read Jack’s books, and giggling away at Jack’s stories and creativity.
When he came to Arawang he taught us lots of strategies for writing. One was to be bored! He said it was important because being bored allows our brains to fill the blank space with something like a story. Another thing Jack told us to do was to just write.
I really liked Jack coming. I hadn’t read his books when he came but now I really want to. He was a great speaker and he taught us how to write stories better in a fun and interactive way. In the future, I will definitely be using his tips to write more. I hope Jack comes back next year so that more kids can learn from him.
Our team works in major capability acquisitions within the Defence and Security industries. Jack presented to our team as part of our internal learning and development program and it was absolutely awesome!
Jack took us through a number of creative writing and thinking exercises that have improved our project deliverables and written communication methods. All of our team benefitted in some way from Jack’s professional and insightful presentation. I would recommend Jack without hesitation to other companies who want to improve their written products.
Jack is a young, dynamic presenter. His action-packed novels provided great stimulus for our boys. He was funny and engaging and supported the plans that we had for our Open Day presentations. He was a pleasure to work with!
Jack Heath visited our school yesterday and gave a presentation to all Year 7 Students. It was simply a delight to have Jack engage with the boys so quickly. He was knowledgeable, entertaining, and our students asked some very sophisticated and thought-provoking questions.
Jack’s talks and workshop made a huge impact on us as writers. So many students have dug out pieces of writing that had been put aside, ready to breathe new life into them, using Jack’s sound advice.
Within 24 hours of his visit, there was not a single Jack Heath library book to be found on the shelves or on the library display table – all had been borrowed!
He was polite and funny and inspired students with his advice to take time to sit and think – to build in “thinking time”.
As a parting gift, Jack was kind enough to donate an autographed copy of his latest book LIARS: The Truth App to our library.
We thank Jack for engaging with the students’ insightful questions and for taking the time to have stimulating discussions with staff throughout the day.
We absolutely loved having Jack come out to PEGS last week. The boys and the parents thought he was brilliant. He was entertaining, enthusiastic, inspirational and positively energetic for that time of the day.
Jack Heath has had a tremendous impact on our school. He is a dynamic, polished speaker who certainly knows how to captivate and engage an audience, whether it be our Year 3 boys or our Year 6. Jack’s wide range of published books across the different genres meant that the boys could relate to the content of his talk and his superb delivery ensured that they were always interested. Everyone enjoyed his very keen sense of humour and the boys were painlessly fed some great tips on editing and the writing process!
What a wonderful visit we had.
Jack Heath was so inspirational and the students absolutely loved him.
I will highly recommend him to everyone and anyone I can.
We had Jack Heath and he was about the best author we have had over many years. His pitch was perfect for our boys. We will definitely want him back to Riverview…
I just wanted to let you know how much the students enjoyed Jack Heath visiting last week. He was highly engaging and passed on good information about writing and reading. The Year 6 group particularly enjoyed Jack reading some of his choose your own adventure books and having to make decisions as a group. The Year 7 talk was great too.
I also received positive feedback from Staff. They felt that Jack was entertaining but also hit on areas that were good for classrooms, like how important the editing process is, taking time to write regularly and how necessary thinking time is. Jack also gave some great advice about characterisation too.
We would definitely have Jack back again and would recommend him to other schools.
Jack Heath recently spent 3 days at our school, running creative writing workshops for our Year 8 students. Each workshop took 90 minutes, and there were 3 workshops per day, so Jack was extremely busy.
Students were initially engaged by Jack’s sense of humour, and his storytelling ability. Having gained their full attention, Jack was then able to teach them a great deal about the art of creative writing. Each student worked on a short story inspired by Jack’s setting the opening scene. Many students then had the opportunity to share their story with the group, and receive feedback from Jack. All the feedback he gave was very positive, while also giving the students ideas for improvement. Jack then gave the students practical strategies for editing their work and carrying out their own refinements to any written task, skills which they took away with them.
A highlight for the students was Jack’s reading of the opening chapter from his new novel, Replica. Students have already been asking Library staff for this book, which is not released until August.
Our school was lucky enough to have a school visit from Jack Heath and he was nothing short of excellent. My Year 7 students appreciated his quick wit and approachable nature, and took great delight in the memorable and amusing anecdotes that accompanied his workshop material. He happily and readily answered student questions with ease and confidence and had all students in my class engaged and ready to write. My Year 12 Children’s Literature class learnt from Jack’s workshop about the importance of young adult fiction conventions and many students reflected their learning in their future work.
The day went exceptionally well and the feedback was that he was great – many students describing it all as ‘Amazing!’ Our students were exceptionally well behaved which is a testimony in itself!
Jack is a very personable and engaging speaker and the workshops were so comprehensive and such a good learning experience.
The entire Middle School (about 400 students) were in the palm of Jack’s hand from the beginning. He is a self deprecating, enthusiastic and hilarious storyteller who draws his audience in. Staff and students alike really enjoyed his presentation and they are still (3 weeks later) telling me how great it was.
I would heartily recommend Jack Heath as a speaker for boys and girls from Year 5 to Year 8. The creative writing workshops he ran for our Year Sevens were a big hit, particularly the boys who were keen as mustard to borrow his books afterwards. Some teachers are reading his books in class too, which is fantastic.
Jack is an entertaining guest speaker who shares his passion for writing and reading. Students enjoyed his storyteller approach and responded well during question time.
Feedback after the presentation included, ‘I haven’t read any of his books, but I want to now!’ We will be adding more titles by Jack Heath to our collection.
The Year 7s and 8s were beside themselves with excitement in their library lesson when Jack was there talking to them and listening to their stories. The boys loved working with him and he was so great with all ages. We are madly trying to arrange a time when he can join us again.
Jack is an inspirational speaker who mixes good humour with educational content. A must for any teenage group!
Jack worked with our Year 7 students for a week as a Writer in Residence. He was highly engaging for girls and boys and gave the students fun and practical ways to improve their creative writing. We would recommend him and would be happy to have him back.
Jack Heath was obviously a pro at this sort of thing. The kids hung on his every word and asked good questions. Their English teacher (who is not in the techie-brigade) was impressed with what he said about writing and refining your work.
Jack Heath was fabulous! All the Year 7s, especially the reluctant readers, loved him and were excited about reading his books and trying to have a go at writing themselves. They rushed out and went to hire his books from the library so much so that we have had to order more. He is an absolute inspiration, encouraging young adults in their literacy development. His blend of ‘saying it like it is’ with his humour and unique dance moves made the day so special for the students.
I wanted to contact you to let you know that we were incredibly happy with the work that Jack did on our camp last week. He was incredibly engaging and the kids who attended all loved having him present to them. Their feedback at the end of the camp was that they would love to have him come back and that he was by far their favourite session across the three day camp.
Please pass on my thanks to Jack.
Jack Heath was fantastic. We really appreciated having him here at our small school. He presented in such an engaging way and really had the students eating out of his hand.