The Official Bit – My Biography
Emma is an internationally published author of books for both adults and children; an experienced presenter; a passionate advocate for children’s literacy in disadvantaged communities; and founder of the planet-friendly start-up DEED bags. She has been featured widely in local, national and international print press; and was a guest author on BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour when she lived in London.
Emma’s passion for shoes, fashion and contemporary culture is strongly reflected in her published titles to date: ‘A Passion for Shoes’, ‘A Passion for Handbags’ – non-fiction, RPS, London and US, 2002; ‘The Shoe Princess’s Guide to the Galaxy’, Female Commercial Fiction, Bloomsbury UK, 2009; ‘Wonderful Shoes’, Picture Book, Illustrated by Tania McCartney, Windy Hollow Books, 2021.
Emma has been shortlisted in the ‘Scribbles Creative Writing Awards’ sponsored by HarperCollins Australia for children’s picture book and middle grade stories (2018 and 2019). She is happiest when surrounded by a huddle of children in the classroom, sitting at her desk writing her next story or handcrafting her latest DEED bag.
Emma enjoys a happy creative life with a strong emphasis on giving back to the community.
While fashion, sewing and the environment have been lifelong passions of Emma’s, she pursued healthcare and corporate careers after graduating from the University of Queensland with a double degree in Science (chemistry, biochemistry, psychology) and Occupational Therapy (First Class Honours). Specialising in industrial ergonomics and workplace healthcare, she loved swapping her slingbacks for steel-capped boots and treading the factory floors at companies such as Rover and Ford Motor Company. But it was complex report writing and managing large healthcare teams in London, where she worked for eleven years, which ultimately sowed the seeds to her future writing career. And when she became a new mum in the early 2000s, she was both surprised and thrilled to rediscover her creative-writing and fashion-loving interests – resulting in the publication of her non-fiction and commercial fiction titles for adults with RPS and Bloomsbury (UK). Emma now resides in Melbourne with her family, where she dedicates her writing energies to children’s literature.
Emma is a long-term supporter of the Melbourne-based children’s education charity, Ardoch. In 2016, she was invited by Ardoch to help establish their ‘Writer in Residence’ Program – which has since gone on to receive corporate funding and enable five published authors to be placed in schools each year, in communities of need. Emma is an active member of the book community in Australia (SCBWI; CBCA; ASA; Writers Vic) and was invited to be an official blogger for the annual children’s literature conference, ‘KidLitVic Meet the Publishers’ in Melbourne (2019).
In 2017, Emma expanded her creative pursuits to follow her dream of starting her own slow fashion business, DEED bags – where she designs and sews bespoke tote bags in a small sustainable studio, and gives back to charity via donations through every bag sold, along with regular social media fundraising campaigns.