Category: Success stories: Fiction and memoir

Penelope Janu’s trifecta – published three times in one year

A huge congratulations to AWC’s creative writing graduate Penelope Janu on the publication of three books this year, including On the Same Page, which also won the prestigious 2017 XO Romance Prize. On the Same Page tells the story of Miles Franklin (named after the famous author), who is... read more

Congratulations to Frances Chapman winner of the 2018 Ampersand Prize

We are delighted to announce that AWC graduate Frances Chapman has won the prestigious Hardie Grant Egmont 2018 Ampersand Prize for her ‘vibrant’ debut YA novel, What it Takes. From the Hardie Grant website: Selected from nearly two hundred submissions, What It Takes is a beautifully written own-voices LGBTQ... read more

Joanna Nell: From GP to published author with her feel-good debut novel

Courses taken at AWC: Creative Writing Stage 1 Advanced Fiction Writing Techniques Novel Writing Essentials Build Your Author Platform Pitch Your Novel: How to Attract Agents and Publishers An unexpected incident led Joanna Nell to the Australian Writers' Centre and the subsequent publishing of her feel-good debut novel The... read more

Shelly Unwin blasts off with another winning children’s book!

AWC courses completed: Writing Picture Books How to Write for Children and Young Adults Prolific children’s author Shelly Unwin is blasting onto bookshelves with her new picture book Blast Off!, which rockets through the solar system in a funny, fact-filled space trip around the planets. Inspired by her... read more

Ingrid Alexandra fulfils a lifelong dream to be a published author

AWC courses completed: Advanced Fiction Writing Techniques Ingrid’s tenacity and stubbornness to keep at it no matter how many rejections were thrown at her have paid off with the launch of her psychological thriller The New Girl published by HarperCollins imprint Avon Books UK. Investing in skills “I'd... read more

Astrid Scholte: Now a successful author of young adult fiction

AWC Courses completed: Creative Writing Stage 1 Advanced Fiction Writing Techniques (Creative Writing Stage 2) Start Your Novel History, Mystery and Magic Blogging for Beginners What Publishers Want Lofty ambitions pay off Astrid Scholte had always hoped to be published. In fact, she had the lofty goal of being published... read more

Tania Blanchard: From physiotherapist to full-time fiction author

Success: Debut historical novel The Girl from Munich, published by Simon and Schuster in 2017 (two-book deal). AWC courses completed: Become a Children's Author [Writing Books for Children and Young Adults] Advanced Fiction Writing Techniques Background: A debut historical novel kicking off a two-book deal with a... read more

Jenna Guillaume: Journalist turned YA fiction author

Success: After putting off the idea of creative writing for many years, Jenna Guillaume signed a two-book deal with Pan Macmillan for her YA fiction. Her first book Maisie, will be published in 2019. AWC courses completed: Creative Writing Stage 1 Become a Children’s Author Background: Sometimes it... read more

Shankari Chandran: From lawyer to published author

When Shankari Chandran took time out of her career as a lawyer to have her fourth child, she turned her hand to writing in between baby feeds and family demands. This pastime has turned into a new career and Shankari has now released her first novel The Barrier, a futuristic... read more

Shelly Unwin: “I LOVE that I can call this my job.”

Success: Shelly has written a series of counting-themed picture books for one to five-year-olds – published June 2017 through Allen & Unwin. In 2018 she has written two books, Blast Off  published by Penguin Random House and There's a Baddie Running Through this Book published by Allen... read more

Catherine Pelosi: From boring office job to book deal

Success: Quark's Academy – debut children's novel signed with Hachette. Plus setting up her own copywriting and freelance travel writing business in Sydney. Something for Fleur – children's picture book, illustrated by Caitlin Murray and published by Hachette Australia. AWC courses completed: Become a Children's Author (Writing Books... read more

Road is good for Bridget’s memoir

Success: Road No Good – Finch Publishing, January 2017 (Runner up, Finch Memoir prize 2016) AWC courses taken: Start Your Novel: Introduction to Novel Writing Advanced Fiction Writing Techniques Background After living for two years in remote Vanuatu where she had helped develop the preschools in an isolated town called Luganville... read more

Sarah Bailey: Daydreamer to dream book deal

Courses taken at AWC: Creative Writing Stage 1 Winner of two coveted literary awards in 2018, the Ned Kelly Award for Best First Crime Novel and the Davitt Award for Best Debut Crime Book  for her first novel, The Dark Lake, Sarah is proof that following your passion and dreams... read more

AWC graduate Liz Anelli: Illustrator adds writing skills

When picture book illustrator Liz Anelli moved from England to Australia in 2012, she was keen to add something new to her two decades’ experience. And it was a chance encounter with Australian Writers’ Centre (AWC) presenter Cathie Tasker that would provide the spark to a new career as a... read more

AWC graduate Penny Morrison: Published picture book author

It wasn’t so long ago that Sydney mum Penny Morrison would have laughed off suggestions that she could be a published picture book author. She never thought of herself ever writing books. However, now with half a dozen books to her name, including an industry recognition, she has no... read more