Sally Murphy

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Sally Murphy wanted to be many things when she grew up – then she realised she didn’t want to grow up! So she’s decided to be a big kid for as long as she can get away with it. Sometimes, though, she manages to masquerade as a grown up, which is just as well because when she’s not writing for children she’s a mother of six, teacher and book reviewer. Sally’s books include verse novels Pearl Verses the World and Toppling, picture books Do Not Forget Australia, Meet Mary MacKillop and Head Hog and lots of others – over 35 books and counting. Her writing has won awards including the Mary Ryans Award in the Queensland Premier’s Literary Awards, the children’s book category of the WA Premier’s Literary Awards, the Speech Pathologists’ Book of the Year Award and two short listings in the CBCA Children’s Book of the Year Awards.

A lively and entertaining speaker, Sally can talk about anything you’d like – but she especially loves to talk about books and writing to audiences of all ages.

Sally's Books

Pearl verses the world
by Sally Murphy. Illustrated by Heather Potter.

Sometimes Pearl feels like she’s alone on an island. At school it seems nobody understands her and at home her family is fracturing and everything is changing.

A poignant story about family and loss and finding your place in the world, exploring the topic of dementia.

by Sally Murphy. Illustrated by Rhian Nest James.

John likes playing with dominoes, and hanging out with his best mate Dominic. But suddenly Dominic is sick, and it seems he’s in danger of toppling, just like John’s dominoes. Can John and his friends support Dom?

A tale about friendship and support, dealing with themes of childhood illness.

Meet Mary MacKillop
by Sally Murphy. Illustrated by Sonia Martinez.

She may be Australia’s first Saint, but it is hard for children to understand the many obstacles Mary MacKillop had to face to set up her schools – and just why this was such an amazing achievement. Part of the Meet… series from Random House, this book attempts to show what an amazing woman, and notable Australian Mary was.

A useful support to the newly released history strands of the National Curriculum.

Visit Sally's website for more of her titles.

Sally's Workshops

Sally has spoken to audiences from early childhood through to parents and teachers at events large and small across Australia. Her workshops can include the following – but if you want something different she is happy to tailor a presentation to your needs.

Meet the Author

Tailored to the age of the audience, these sessions include a combination of reading from one or more of her books, and talking about the writer’s life – where ideas come from, how they are shaped into stories, and the steps in producing a book. Questions are encouraged, and sessions are usually very interactive.

Sometimes I Cry

For middle primary through to secondary students, Sally talks about the tougher topics she deals with in her verse novels and historical picture books, and why she feels they are important.

You can Write Poetry

Tailored to the age group, a hands on writing workshop where participants are enabled to write free verse poetry. Suitable for primary, secondary or adult participants.

Teacher Workshops

For educators and librarians, Sally is happy to speak about exploring both difficult issues and history through literature.

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