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Mark Carthew

Author, Entertainer, Storyteller/Performer

Mark Carthew is an award winning editor and children’s author well known for his many books, including the recent The great Zoo Hullabaloo!, and his series that explore wordplay, music, movement, drama, jokes, rhymes and riddles! Mark’s recent picture book The Gobbling Tree was a winner of the Speech Pathology Australia’s Book of the Year.

What other jobs have you had?

I have been a primary teacher most of all my adult life, but I also worked as a cabinetmaker for short while. I have also been an Arts Education Consultant for the Victorian Department of Education and currently work a sessional university lecturer and tutor.

What themes are recurring in your work?

I love playing with words, so there are a lot of options! I like making picture book stories that allow an illustrator to create a strong sense of visual narrative and fun. I’d have to say that a strong sense of silly wordplay seems to be one of the themes at the moment. I also love collecting rhymes, songs & stories and creating anthologies that bring works to life in interesting ways.

What have been the highlights of your career?

Winning the Best New Australian Publication award from Drama Victoria for my P-6 illustrated play script series VoiceWorks and Speech Pathology Australia’s Book of The Year 2009: Best book for language development (Lower primary) for The Gobbling Tree. In 2005 I was also honoured to receive the Highly Commended Dromkeen Librarian’s Award.


What a wonderful Book Week we experienced at Korowa.  A special thank you to Mark Carthew who entertained our students, and in no time had them dancing, laughing, singing and participating wholeheartedly in the activities on offer.  The feedback from all involved has been overwhelmingly positive, and our staff also welcomed the opportunity to get involved.  Thank you also for the books you kindly donated to our Library, they are very much appreciated.

—M. Wildie, Korowa Anglican Girls’ School Library, August 2018

Mark Carthew was a big hit this morning with our Foundation-Year 3. Let it be said “He came, he sang, he read stories, he conquered”
Absolutely fantastic!

—S. Turner, Mill Park Primary School, May 2016

We had a great day on Monday with our visiting authors. The staff and student feedback was very positive and more importantly the books of the visiting authors are now in high demand from library! Naturally each author had their own style for presentation but all were considerate of the group before them and adjusted the talks accordingly. Mark had hardly started his chat when he had the girls dancing and they were captured right from the start – many writing their own rhymes the following day.

—R. Hirst, Lowther Hall, September 2012

Mark Carthew was incredible. There was lots of visuals and music and the children had plenty of opportunity to join in and take part in the story telling, singing and dancing. Unfortunately I wasn’t in this session but the children and teachers loved his presentation. It was a highlight of their Book Week.

—B. Dykes, English Coordinator, Cantebury Primary School

The student and staff were absolutely enthralled by Mark’s visit. The enjoyed all the different aspects of his writing and techniques with the illustrations in his books. Mark’s visit was certainly a highlight in helping Baxter Primary School celebrate our Literacy month.

—J. Paulding, Baxter Primary School, August 2017

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