The 2020 Northern Beaches Young Writers' Competition is now open. Students from Kindergarten to Year 12 have until Wednesday 10 June to submit their story using this year's theme word, splash.
We are thrilled to announce the talented writers that will be judging the competition this year.
Judging the Year K - 2 category is Yvette Poshoglian. Yvette is a bestselling author of over 30 books for children including the popular Ella and Olivia series, the Frankie Fox Spy Girl books, the Puppy Diary series and the historical fiction title, My Australian Story: Escape from Cockatoo Island.
Yvette has previously run the NSW Premier's Reading Challenge, is a regular guest and panel host at writers' festivals and works with both students and teachers in the areas of creative writing, storytelling and literacy. Her advice for young writers - 'Just make a start!'
Judging the Year 3 - 4 category is Oliver Phommavanh. Oliver likes nothing more than to make people laugh, be it through his job as a stand-up comedian or through his numerous books!
Oliver's stories are packed with non-stop laughter but also have genuine heart as he explores his experiences of living in a multicultural Australia. His most recent books include Don't Follow Vee and Natural Born Loser but he is known best for Thai-riffic!, Con-nerd and The Other Christy. With Oliver, we know that the judging experience will be a blast!
Judging the Year 5 - 6 category this year is Louise Park who under her own name and three pseudonyms, is the author of several best-selling series including Grace's secrets, Zac Power, Harriet Clare, Bella Dancerella and Star Girl.
Louise spends most of her days battling beasts, finding secret doors to magical lands and solving Harriet Clare's terrible troublesome dramas while helping her cope with anxiety. Louise has taught primary school children, trained teachers in literacy education and developed successful reading resources to help children crack the reading code.
Judging the Year 7 - 8 category is Tim Harris, best-selling author of several laugh-out-loud series for kids including Toffle Towers, Mr Bambuckle's Remarkables and Exploding Endings.
A former primary school teacher of 15 years, Tim's stories are filled with quirky scenarios, lovable characters and plenty of imagination. His 'humour with heart' writing style has seen his books receive multiple awards including two KOALA Honours Book Awards (2017 and 2019) and a Children's Book Council of Australia Notable Award (2018).
Judging the Year 9 - 10 category is Wendy Fitzgerald, the President of the Northern Sydney sub branch of the Children's Book Council of Australia. Wendy teaches creative writing at Ku-ring-gai Arts Centre in Roseville and is a creative writing tutor at the Sydney Factory in Redfern. She is also the author of two children's books, Bollywood dreams and Indigo solves the puzzle.
Wendy believes that everyone should follow their dreams and would love to see more children's books that feature characters from different backgrounds.
Judging the Year 11 - 12 category is Catherine Greer. Catherine has written both a children's picture book, Jacaranda Show, and a young adult novel, love lie repeat.
Catherine grew up in Canada and holds a BA Honours and Masters degree in English literature. She started her career as an English teacher in Canada and then immigrated to Australia where she built a freelance copywriting business. When she isn't writing young adult novels and other books for children, she runs a happiness blog that focuses on positive psychology.