Success stories


* We are delighted to hear that Helena Fox’s debut novel How It Feels to Float won the 2020 Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards in the Writing for Young Adults category. Helena was mentored by Kathryn Heyman.


* Hearty congratulations to our outstanding mentor, Dr Mark Tredinnick, who received the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for “service to literature, and to education” in the 2020 Australia Day Honours roll. Well deserved recognition of Mark’s ongoing dedication in his field. Read more about Mark on our Mentors Page.
The Tour by Andrew Mackie


* We are thrilled for Andrew Mackie, whose novel, The Tour, will be published by Penguin Australia in June 2020. Kathryn Heyman mentored Andrew under the Headway program.


The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock by Jane Riley* Jane Riley’s, debut novel, The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock will be published in February by Lake Union in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia. Jane was mentored by Kathryn Heyman under the Headway program and we are thrilled for her success! Read what Jane had to say about mentoring here.



* Congratulations to Christine Sykes, who was mentored by Stephanie Dowrick for her memoir and whose first novel, The Changing Room will be released by Ventura Press in November 2019. Read Christine’s testimonial here


Out of Order, Rob Donnelly

* We are delighted for Rob Donnelly who was mentored during 2017 by Kathryn Heyman. His novel, Out of Order was published in 2019. In September 2019, Richard Fidler of ABC Conversations interviewed Rob about his memoir and his experience of joining a contemplative monastery in Melbourne. Listen to the podcast at Conversations with Richard Fidler, Sarah Kanowski on the ABC.


* Congratulations to Nick Gadd mentored by Nick Earls, whose second book, Death of a Typographer, will be published in September 2019 by Australian Scholarly Publishing. Read Nick’s testimonial here

The Last Balfour by Cait Duggan


* Exciting news from Cait Duggan mentored by James Bradley. Cait’s first book, a young adult fiction, The Last Balfour, will be published in August 2019. We are delighted to hear this wonderful news.


* Our best wishes to Jane Riley, mentored by Kathryn Heyman in the extended program. After an international auction, Jane secured a two-book deal on the basis of her novel The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock, which will be published in 2020 by Lake Union imprint at Amazon Publishing in Australia and will also be published in Germany and Italy. Her second book, Geraldine Verne’s Red Suitcase, will be published in January 2021. We are thrilled for Jane’s success!

Sienna Brown Master of my Fate


* Congratulations to Sienna Brown mentored by Kathryn Heyman, 2018. Sienna’s book, Master Of My Fate published by Vintage Australia will be available from May 2019.



Alice to Prague by Tanya Heaslip

* Congratulations to Tanya Heaslip, mentored by Kathryn Heyman, who has signed a two memoir book deal with Allen and Unwin. Her first memoir is a Girls’ Own Adventure and love story set in Prague, not long after the Berlin Wall fell, and the bittersweet search for identity and belonging and the ultimate meaning of where home lies. This memoir will be published in June 2019. The second book is to be a memoir of growing up on an outback cattle station in Central Australia during the 1960s and 70s. It will celebrate a land of blue skies and red earth, a time of no communication with the outside world except by two-way radio, life on a horse in the stock camp and the joys of learning through School of the Air. This memoir will be published in June 2020.


* Double congratulations and good luck to our mentor Mark Tredinnick and also to Kevin Smith, who is currently working with Mark. Both have been shortlisted (more than once) in the nation’s most significant poetry competition, the Newcastle Poetry Prize. Winners announced on 20th October.


* Congratulations to Nicole McAlinden, mentored by Kathryn Heyman, whose novel Little Did I Know was the winner of the Kill Your Darlings Unpublished Manuscript Award. Nicole says, “I am completely stunned and delighted by the news, and I know that I wouldn’t be on the short list without your wonderful guidance.”


Dustfall by Michelle Johnston

*AWMP mentee Michelle Johnston was a winner of the Hachette/QWC Manuscript Development Award for her novel Dustfall. We’re very excited for Michelle who says of the mentoring program, “It felt like psychotherapy for my characters and bootcamp for my structure. I could not recommend the process more highly, particularly for the writing of a first novel.”  Read the full testimonial. Dustfall was published by UWA Press and is receiving rave reviews’ (2018)



* It’s wonderful to share the news that Emma Harcourt’s debut novel, The Shanghai Wife will be available from June 2018. Emma was mentored by Kathryn Heyman.



* AWMP is pleased to congratulate Emma Harcourt, mentored by Kathryn Heyman, has signed a two book deal with Harlequin, for publication of her novel The Shanghai Wife in 2018.


Mine by Suzi Fox* Suzi Fox, who was mentored by Toni Jordan also shares the good news that her novel, Mine, will be published by Penguin Random House in June 2018. Suzi credits Toni’s help for enabling her to deliver the best possible manuscript to the publisher. Read more here.


* Congratulations to Glenna Thomson,  mentored by Toni Jordan who has secured a 2-book deal with Penguin Random House. Her first book, Blueberry was published in January 2017. Read more here.


We That Are Left by Lisa Bigelow* Lisa Bigelow who was mentored by Kathryn Heyman has had her debut novel, We That Are Left published by Allen and Unwin. Set in inner Melbourne and rural Victoria, We That Are Left is a moving and haunting novel about love and war. Read more here. Congratulations Lisa!




A Book of Untruths by Miranda Landgraf* Miranda Landgraf was mentored by Kathryn Heyman and has just sold her first book, A Book of Untruths to Faber UK to be published in 2017. We wish Miranda every success. Read Miranda’s full testimonial here

* Amanda Webster was mentored by Kathryn Heyman under The Intensive program, working on her second non-fiction book. A Tear in the Soul , which will be published by New South Books in September. We wish Amanda great success with this important exploration of race in Australia. Read the testimonial here

maggies*Caroline Beecham was mentored and taught by Kathryn Heyman and James Bradley, and her first novel, Maggie’s Kitchen, is to be published by Allen & Unwin in August 2016. We’re thrilled about Caroline’s success!

Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 09.17.50*Kathryn Heyman mentored Sarah Armstrong during the writing of her beautiful third novel, Promise. Sarah worked with Kathryn via the Intensive Program, and the rights to Promise have been sold in Germany. In Australia, it will be published by Pan MacMillan on the 1st July 2016.


Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 09.28.592015

* We are thrilled to be joined by a new mentor, Ross Grayson Bell, the man who created the film Fight Club. An expert in narrative structure, Ross has adapted several novels for screen and is the Senior Judge of the NSW Literary Awards. Ross mentors screenwriters, playwrights and prose writers who are particularly interested in focusing on their story structure.

* For the second year, one of our mentees has been shortlisted for the prestigious Impress Prize in the UK. Rudrani Tooth has been shortlisted for the international novel award for her manuscript “The Year of the Metal Bird.” Rudrani says simply “I could not have done it without Kathryn”.

* Yet another mentee has signed with a top agent. Emma Harcourt has signed with Pippa Masson of Curtis Brown Australia who plan to present her beautiful novel at the Frankfurt Book Fair!

zeroes-9781481443364_lg* “Deborah Biancotti was taught by James Bradley and signed a three-book deal for a series co-written with Margo Lanagan and Scott Westerfield. The series, Zeroes (cover, right), has been sold in the UK, USA, Turkey, Spain and Germany and the first in the series is a New York Times bestseller. Deborah says “James is a smart, insightful and compassionate coach whose breadth of knowledge about fiction—in all its forms—is hard to beat.”

Screen Shot 2015-09-25 at 11.08.10*Kathryn mentored PJ Tierney during the writing of the Jamie Reign series. Books 2 and 3 have been as successful as the first, finding readers everywhere.

*Sally Collin-James
has recently signed with top literary agent Gaby Naher of the Naher Agency. Sally says “The mentorship helped me clarify critical plot issues, sharpen the writing word-by-word and produce a taut, toned manuscript that gained me a first-class agent.” Read the full testimonial here.

2013 – 2014

*We were so thrilled to hear that mentee Bernadette Williamson was shortlisted for the 2014 Impress Prize for Fiction. Read what Bernadette had to say about the program.

* PJ Tierney, mentored by Kathryn Heyman 2011 – 2013 signed a three-book deal after a three-way auction. Rights to her YA series are now being sold internationally. The first in the series – Jamie Reign: The Last Spirit Warrior – was published on July 1st 2013! She continued her mentorship working on the second and third books in the series Jamie Reign – The Hidden Dragon, and Jamie Reign – The Lost Soul.

* PJ Tierney‘s The Last Spirit Warrior was shortlisted for the Readings Children’s Book Prize.  Read what PJ Tieney had to say about the experience of being mentored by Kathryn here.

* Jo Riccioni, taught by James Bradley, continues to receive reviews for The Italians at the Cleat Street Corner Store (Scribe) and is now working on her second novel. Jo wrote: “I believe his lack of pretension and genuine openness to the role of fiction and its capabilities puts James at the forefront of writing teachers and mentors working today.”

* Kathryn mentored Angela Goode in 2012/13, working on her memoir Through the Farm Gate, published by Allen & Unwin in December 2013. She’s receiving great reviews. We’re all thrilled for Angela! Read her testimonial here.desert

*Kathryn taught Cherise Saywell as part of a residential program in the UK, during the writing of her first novel, Desert Fish (cover right), published by Random House. We’ve been thrilled with her ongoing success.

2011 – 2012

* Kathryn mentored Ed Siegle in the writing of his first novel, Invisibles (Myriad Editions). The novel was  shortlisted for the 2012 Waverton Good Read Award in the UK.

 Kathryn mentored Maggie Freeman  during the writing of her historical novel, Cymberie. We were thrilled to see Cymberie published by Indigo in the UK.

*Kathryn Heyman mentored Ondine Sherman, during the writing of her memoir, Miracle of Love. The memoir was published by Murdoch books in 2013, with coverage in the national press.

*Kathryn Heyman mentored Jane Rusbridge throughout the writing of her first novel, The Devil’s Music. The novel was longlisted for the 2011 Impac International Award. Jane’s second novel, Rook, has recently been published by Bloomsbury and was brilliantly  reviewed in August in the Times Literary Supplement. We’re thrilled for Jane’s ongoing success.

51hGreE8HWL._SX309_BO1,204,203,200_*Martha Lea was taught by Kathryn Heyman and Gold Dust founder Jill Dawson on an Arvon residential course in the UK. Her novel, The Specimen, was published by Canongate in 2013. Martha wrote:

Dear Kathryn and Jill,
I just wanted to thank you both again for a fantastic week at the Hurst in June this year. Most especially, I want to thank you both for all your encouraging words and helpful advice about my novel, The Specimen. As you may know, I sent my first pages to Peter at RC&W and he passed them on to Jennifer Hewson. Jennifer has been wonderful, and I have had an offer for The Specimen. Truly, this wouldn’t have happened if it hadn’t been for you two telling me to get it out there again. So thank you.
Wishing you the best