Yassmin Abdel-Magied is a Sudanese-born Australian writer, social advocate and mechanical engineer. Yassmin worked on oil and gas rigs before becoming a full-time writer and broadcaster. She has published a memoir, Yassmin’s Story, and her debut middle-grade fiction, You Must be Layla. Her writing has appeared in publications such as Teen Vogue, London’s Evening Standard, the Guardian and numerous anthologies. Yassmin has worked extensively in non-profit governance, founding her first organisation, Youth Without Borders, at the age of 16. She has since served on numerous board and councils, including the Council of Australian-Arab Relations, ChildFund, and as the Gender Ambassador for the Inter-American Development Bank. Yassmin has received national and international awards for her advocacy, including the Young Voltaire Award for Free Speech and Queensland Young Australian of the Year. Yassmin created Mumtaza, dedicated to the empowerment of women of colour, and most recently founded Kuwa, a platform tackling cultural change around sexual harassment in workplaces. She has presented for television including ABC’s Australia Wide, and documentaries such as The Truth About Racism; she created the series Hijabistas. Yassmin has delivered keynotes in over 20 countries on unconscious bias and leadership. Her TED talk, What Does My Headscarf Mean to You?, has been viewed over two million times and was chosen as one of TED’s top ten ideas of 2015. Yassmin is currently based in London. www.yassminam.com Twitter: @yassmin_a


  • Yassmin's Story (Penguin Random House, 2016)
  • You Must Be Layla (Penguin Random House, 2019)

ADAMS, Jessica

Jessica Adams is a novelist, editor and astrologer. She is the author of four best-selling novels and is the astrologer for several publications, including Cosmo and The Australian Women’s Weekly. Jessica’s deluxe travel guide Holiday Goddess Handbag Guide to Paris, New York, London and Rome was published by HarperCollins in November 2011.


  • Single White E-Mail (Pan Macmillan Australia, 1998)
  • Tom, Dick and Debbie Harry (Pan Macmillan Australia, 2000)
  • I’m A Believer (Pan Macmillan Australia, 2002)
  • Cool for Cats (Pan Macmillan Australia, 2003)
  • The Summer Psychic (Arena, 2007)
  • Vintage Alice (Arena, 2009)
  • Holiday Goddess Handbag Guide to Paris, New York, London and Rome (HarperCollins, 2011)

AGNEW, Leonie

Leonie Agnew may or may not be living in South America with a poodle named Juan. She informs us that her days are spent drinking sangrias and teaching Juan how to bark in Spanish, while trading sombreros on the black market via her iPad. However, our sources have located her in Auckland, New Zealand. They claim she is an award-winning children's author, a former copywriter, and currently moonlights as a primary school teacher. It is possible she has a tendency to make things up. This is called lying, unless you write it down – then it is pleasantly referred to as being an author.


  • The Impossible Boy (Penguin NZ, 2016)

AKHIL, Shalini

Shalini Akhil is an author and comedian. Shalini was born in Fiji, and lives with her husband in Melbourne. She was shortlisted in 2004 for the Victorian Premier's Literary Award for an unpublished manuscript that was an earlier version of her novel The Bollywood Beauty. Shalini was a finalist in the Triple J Raw Comedy National Grand Final. She has had short fiction published in Meanjin and her non-fiction work has also been published by The Age, and in the Women of Letters anthology.


  • The Bollywood Beauty (Penguin Random House, 2005) Shortlisted, 2004 Victorian Premier's Literary Awards - Prize for an Unpublished Manuscript by an Emerging Victorian Writer


Maggie Alderson was born in London. She has worked on nine magazines - editing four of them, including British ELLE - and has been going to fashion shows for 20 years. She is a fashion columnist with The Sydney Morning Herald and her novels have been bestsellers in Australia and the UK.


  • Shoe Money (Penguin, 1998)
  • Pants on Fire (Penguin, 2000)
  • Mad About the Boy (Penguin, 2002)
  • Handbags and Gladrags (Viking, 2004)
  • Cents and Sensibility (Viking, 2006) Shortlisted, 2007 Australian Book Industry Awards Australian General Fiction Book of the Year
  • Gravity Sucks (Penguin, 2007)
  • Cents and Sensibility (Penguin, 2007) Shortlisted 2007 Australian Book Industry Awards for Australian General Fiction Book of the Year
  • How to Break Your Own Heart (Michael Joseph, 2008) Finalist, 2009 Romance Writers of Australia, Romantic Book of the Year Award; Shortlisted, 2009 Australian Book Industry Awards for Australian General Fiction Book of the Year
  • Shall We Dance (Penguin, 2010)
  • Evangeline, the Wish Keeper’s Helper (Viking, 2011) Shortlisted, 2012 Prime Minister's Literary Awards, Children's Fiction
  • Everything Changes But You (Michael Joseph, 2012)
  • Secret Keeping for Beginners (HarperCollins, 2015)
  • The Scent of You (HarperCollins Australia, 2017)


James Aldridge was a novelist and World War Two war correspondent. Aldridge was born in Victoria and served in the Middle East as a war correspondent during WWII. His ouvre comprises more than 30 works ranging from wartime bestsellers to children’s literature. Aldridge's 1966 novel My Brother Tom was made into a TV mini-series in 1986 starring Gordon Jackson and Keith Michell. In 1972, Aldridge won a Lenin Peace Prize for 'his outstanding struggle for the preservation of peace'.


  • Signed with Their Honour (Brown, Little & Co, 1942)
  • The Sea Eagle (Wyatt and Watts, 1944) Winner of the 1945 John Llewellyn Rhys Prize
  • Of Many Men (Michael Joseph, 1946)
  • The Diplomat (Bodley Head, 1949)
  • The Hunter (Bodley Head, 1950)
  • Heroes of the Empty View (Bodley Head, 1954)
  • Undersea Hunting for Inexperienced Englishmen (Allen & Unwin, 1955)
  • I Wish He Would Not Die (John Lane, 1957)
  • The Last Exile (Hamish Hamilton, 1961)
  • A Captive in the Land (Hamish Hamilton, 1962)
  • My Brother Tom (Hamish Hamilton, 1966)
  • The Statesman's Game (Hamish Hamilton, 1966)
  • The Flying 19 (Hamish Hamilton, 1966)
  • Cairo (Little, Brown & Co, 1969)
  • Living Egypt (MacGibbon and Kee, 1969)
  • A Sporting Proposition (Michael Joseph, 1973)
  • Mockery In Arms (Michael Joseph, 1974)
  • The Marvellous Mongolian (Macmillan, 1974)
  • The Untouchable Juli (Michael Joseph, 1975)
  • One Last Glimpse (Little, Brown & Co, 1977)
  • Goodbye Un-America (Michael Joseph, 1979)
  • The Broken Saddle (Julia MacRae, 1982)
  • The True Story of Lilli Stubeck (Hyland House, 1984) Winner, 1985 Children's Book Council Book of the Year Awards - Book of the Year Award for Older Readers
  • The True Story of Spit MacPhee (Viking, 1986) Winner, 1986 FAW ANA Literature Award; 1986 New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards - Ethel Turner Prize; 1986 New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards - Children's Book Award
  • The True Story of Lola Mackellar (Puffin, 1993)
  • The Girl from the Sea (Penguin, 2002) Shortlisted, 2003 Children's Book Council Book of the Year Awards - Book of the Year: Older Readers; 2003 New South Wales Permier's Literary Awards - Ethel Turner Prize for Young People's Lierature
  • The Wings of Kitty St Clair (Penguin, 2006)


Nicole Alexander is one of Australia’s leading novelists. A fourth generation grazier, she lives in north-west NSW on a mixed agricultural property selected by her great-grandfather in 1893. A passionate writer of over twenty years experience, Nicole’s novels reflect the sense of continuity and love for the land that is inherent in most farmers and graziers. Her novels have been praised for their authenticity and the rich tapestry of outback life which is woven into her stories and her writing style has been described as both inherently beautiful and unique. Nicole has a Masters of Creative Writing and Literature from Central Queensland University. Her writing has been widely published in America, Singapore, New Zealand, Germany and Canada.


  • The Bark Cutters (Bantam Books, 2010) Shortlisted, 2011 Australian Book Industry Awards for Australian Newcomer of the Year
  • A Changing Land (Bantam Books, 2011)
  • Absolution Creek (Bantam Australia, 2012)
  • Surrender to Summer with Margareta Osborn (Random House, 2012)
  • Sunset Ridge (Random House, 2013)
  • The Great Plains (Random House, 2014)
  • Wild Lands (Random House, 2015)
  • River Run (Penguin, 2016)
  • An Uncommon Woman (Penguin Random House, 2017)
  • Stone Country (Penguin Random House, 2019)


Tonya Alexandra is a freelance writer and mother of three, who lives in Sydney’s Northern Beaches. Since graduating from University majoring in journalism, she has written extensively for newspapers, in-flight magazines and specialist travel mags, including being children’s book editor for Out & About With Kids for three years. She is currently working on her first Young Adult Trilogy Love Oracles.
Twitter: @Tonya_Alexandra


  • Nymph (Walker Book Australia, 2014)
  • The Impossible Story of Olive in Love (Harlequin, 2017)
  • The Implausible Story of Olive Far Far Away (Harlequin, forthcoming 2018)

ALLEAUME, Kathleen

Kathleen Alleaume is a trusted health expert in the field of nutrition, fitness, and wellness. She is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist and Nutritionist, has her B.S. degree in Exercise Science and a Master’s degree in Nutrition and is the founding principal of The Right Balance Consultancy Ltd: www.therightbalance.com.au. Her programs specialise in sports nutrition, personal fitness, and weight management. Regularly interviewed for TV, print and radio, Kathleen has featured on Mornings with Kerri-Anne, ABC and SBS radio. Kathleen is a expert contributor to the Lifestyle You web channel, Nine-to-Five, The Australian Women’s Weekly, Australian Healthy Food Guide, Bulletin, Hello! (Dubai), Fernwood, Marie Claire and Cosmopolitan. Kathleen’s first book, What’s Eating You? which delves into the psychology of eating and the constant battle women have with their bodies, was published by Random House in early 2012.


  • What’s Eating You? (Random House, 2012)


Miles Allinson is the author of Fever of Animals, the 2014 winner of the Victorian Premier’s Prize for an Unpublished Manuscript. Published by Scribe in ANZ and the UK, Fever of Animals was awarded the People’s Choice Award in the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2016, and was longlisted for the Indie Awards. Miles lives in Melbourne and works as a bookseller.


  • Fever of Animals (Scribe, 2015) Winner, 2014 Victorian Premier's Literary Awards - Prize for an Unpublished Manuscript by an Emerging Victorian Writer, 2016 Western Australian Premier's Book Award for Fiction; Shortlisted, 2016 Victorian Premier's Literary Awards - The Vance Palmer Prize for Fiction, 2016 New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards - Glenda Adams Award for New Writing; Longlisted, 2016 Australian Book Industry Awards - the Matt Richell Award for New Writer

ALTMAN, Dennis

Dennis Altman is a Professor of Politics at La Trobe University. His involvement in HIV/AIDS community work and research into gay identities and communities in South-East Asia has led to the publication of numerous essays and ten academic works, including On Global Queering and the hugely significant Homosexual: Oppression and Liberation. He is also the author of a novel called The Comfort of Men.


  • The Comfort of Men (Heinemann, 1993)
  • Defying Gravity: A Political Life (Allen and Unwin, 1997)


Steven Amsterdam was born in New York City and has worked as a map editor, producer’s assistant, and a pastry chef. Since 2003, he has lived in Melbourne, where he is a writer and palliative care nurse. His fiction and non-fiction has appeared in The Age, Conde Nast Traveller, Meanjin, The Monthly, Salon, Sleepers Almanac, and The Virginia Quarterly Review, as well as other journals and anthologies. Steven has been a fellow at Varuna-The Writers House, a resident at Rosebank and the Booranga Writers Centre, and a recipient of a grant from the Australia Council. He has run workshops or seminars from Capetown to Edinburgh. And, thanks to the Italian publisher of What the Family Needed, he once appeared in Uomo Vogue.


  • Things We Didn’t See Coming (Sleepers Publishing, 2009) Won The Age Book of the Year in Australia and longlisted for The Guardian First Book Award
  • What the Family Needed (Sleepers Publishing, 2011) longlisted for the International IMPAC Prize and shortlisted for the Encore Award
  • The Easy Way Out (Hachette, 2016)


Erica Angyal is a health practitioner, nutritionist and consultant. In her first book Gorgeous Skin in 30 Days, Erica Angyal explains how her detox program and great nutrition can lead to radiant skin in just 30 days. Gorgeous Skin in 30 Days is published by Hachette Livre Australia, and Allen & Unwin published Gorgeous Skin for Teens in October 2008.


  • Gorgeous Skin in 30 Days (Hachette Australia, 2001)
  • Gorgeous Skin for Teens (Allen & Unwin, 2008)


Venero Armanno is a novelist, playwright and scriptwriter who studied at the University of Queensland, the Australian Film, Television and Radio School and the TISCH School of the Arts in New York. His collection of short stories Jumping at the Moon was equal runner-up for the Steele Rudd Award, and his subsequent novels include The Lonely Hunter, Romeo of the Underworld, My Beautiful Friend, Strange Rain, Firehead, The Volcano, Candlelife (Vintage), The Dirty Beat (UQP) and Black Mountain.


  • The Lonely Hunter (Picador, 1993) Highly Commended, The 1992 Australian/Vogel National Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript
  • Romen of the Underworld (Picador, 1994)
  • My Beautiful Friend (Arrow Books, 1995) Shortlisted, 1995 Aurealis Awards for Excellence in Australian Speculative Fiction Horror Division Best Novel
  • Strange Rain (Vintage, 1996)
  • Firehead (Random House, 1999)Shortlisted, 2004 One Book One Brisbane
  • The Volcano (Knopf, 2001) Winner, 2002 Queensland Premier's Literary Awards for Best Fiction Book; Shortlisted, 2003 One Book One Brisbane
  • The Very Super Adventures of Nic and Naomi Illustrated by Anna Pignataro (Lothian, 2002)
  • Candle Life (Vintage, 2006)
  • The Dirty Beat (University of Queensland Press, 2007)
  • Black Mountain (University of Queensland Press, 2012)


Sarah studied journalism and worked for ABC Radio and Television. In 1993, she won a Walkley Award for a radio story on diggers returning to Gallipoli. She has written three novels and lives in Mullumbimby, on the north coast of New South Wales, with her partner, the writer Alan Close, and their daughter, Amelia.


  • Salt Rain (Allen & Unwin, 2004) Shortlisted, 2005 Miles Franklin Literary Award 2005 Queensland Premier's Literary Awards for Best Fiction Book, The 2005 Dobbie Award
  • His Other House (Pan Macmillan Australia, 2015)
  • Promise (Pan Macmillan Australia, 2016)

AU, Jessica

Jessica Au lives and writes in Melbourne. She studied arts/law at the University of Melbourne and has worked as deputy editor for Meanjin Quarterly, as well as an occasional bookseller. Cargo, her first novel, was highly commended in the 2012 Kathleen Mitchell Award. She is currently working on her second novel.


  • Cargo (Pan Macmilla Australian 2011) Highly Commended, 2012 Kathleen Mitchell Literary Award


Inspired by keen travellers and her storytelling parents, Honor Auchinleck has led a peripatetic life. With her husband Mark who served in the British Army, she has moved home nineteen times, living, working and travelling in five different countries on three continents. Honor has taught English as a Second Language, worked as a freelance features writer and as a photographer for expatriate newspapers. She also worked for an archaeology company in England. Born in Melbourne in 1953 and educated by correspondence schooling at Towong Hill, Toorak College, the Australian National University, and OU in England, she has maintained strong roots in Australia. After returning to Australia to live in 2009 she now combines writing with raising Aberdeen Angus cattle on her farm in the Upper Murray and living in Melbourne.


  • Elyne Mitchell: A Daughter Remembers (HarperCollins, 2012)

AUSTIN, Kirstyn

Kirstyn Austin (Crawford) is the subject and co-writer of Injustice.


  • Injustice (Random House, 1998)

AWAD, Amal

Amal Awad is a Sydney-based writer, journalist, author and public speaker. Amal is a regular contributor to SBS Life, and has written for ELLE, Frankie, Daily Life, Sheilas and Junkie. Amal is also a casual producer for ABC Radio National. With her debut novel, Courting Samira, Amal was a semi-finalist in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. Amal frequently writes and speaks about issues of society, religion and popular culture. She has addressed festivals, universities, youth groups and community organisations, and has appeared on national radio.


  • Courting Samira (2011)
  • Coming of Age: Growing up Muslim in Australia contributor (Allen & Unwin, 2014)
  • This Is How You Get Better (2014)
  • Beyond Veiled Clichés: The Real Lives of Arab Women (Penguin Random House, 2017)
  • Fridays with my Folks (forthcoming in 2019)
  • My Dragon’s Name is Cleo (forthcoming in 2019)