2024 Fellows

Glenda Millard (VIC)
Andrea Rowe (VIC)
Judy Watson (VIC)
Claire Saxby (VIC)
Kathryn Apel (QLD)
Jenny Ruge (QLD)

Glenda Millard

Glenda commenced writing children’s fiction in 1997 and had her first work of fiction, a picture book, published in 1999. In 2004 she ceased paid employment and has been self-employed as a children’s author since then.

Her published works now total 30 and include picture books, books for younger readers and novels for teenagers. Most have been published internationally as well as in Australia and have been widely acclaimed.

Glenda’s most recent novel, ‘The Stars at Oktober Bend’, was shortlisted for 4 major awards including the prestigious Carnegie Medal in the UK and, in Australia, the Prime Minister’s Literary Award.

In 2018 her picture book ‘Pea Pod Lullaby’ won the Prime Minister’s Award for children’s literature. 

Andrea Rowe

Andrea’s best-selling children’s book JETTY JUMPING (Hardie Grant. Illustrated by Hannah Sommerville) is the Winner of the 2022 CBCA Picture Book of the Year – Early Childhood and the 2023 Australian Speech Pathology Book of the Year Awards (5 – 8 year olds), and is featured in Story Box Library as an AUSLAN translation story. Her much anticipated follow-up, SUNDAY SKATING has been released in Australia and internationally in 2023 (Hardie Grant. Illustrated by Hannah Sommerville).

The first of her LITTLE WORLDS board-book series, IN THE ROCKPOOL (Hardie Grant. Illustrated by Hannah Sommerville) is out in November 2023, and her manuscript THE EVERYDAY TUTU has been announced as the 2023 Little Hare Prize text, to inspire new work from unpublished and emerging artists.

Andrea has 4 more books currently in production with Hardie Grant, in addition to a picture book re-imagining the story of a cultural icon with Midnight Sun Publishing.  

She loves to write books for children, young adults and grown-ups too. Andrea combines her nostalgic celebration of culture and the environment in our everyday lives with the questions and reflections that draw us together. Her writing absorbs the themes and issues encouraging collective discussions and conversations. Andrea believes in the power of stories and reading out loud and in secret. Several of her short stories, magazine features and micro fictions have been published and long-listed in literary magazines and Australian awards.

An award-winning short story writer, Andrea’s the winner of the 2020 Hal Porter Short Story Award, 2nd place in the Mulga Bill Writing Award 2023, and Highly Commended for the 2022 Newcastle Short Story Award and her writing features in the recent Teacher, Teacher anthology with Affirm Press.  

As a passionate regional advocate for Australian literature and landscape, and own voices narratives, Andrea is invested in a connected storytelling community. She is the Founding President of the Peninsula Writers’ Club, Founder of the Mornington Peninsula Shire Mayor’s Writing Award, and the co-host of the Words After Dark author interviews with Antipodes Book Store, Sorrento. She is also a Writers Victoria Writeability graduate exploring her own voice living with chronic illness.  

Professionally, Andrea is a former writer for national parks, not-for-profits and government. She has been the Kids Club newsletter editor for the Royal Flying Doctors Association, Junior Rangers programs, Kids Teaching Kids, and the Indigenous Reading Project.

 Andrea writes from her home on Bunurong Country, on the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria. 

 Judy Watson

 (re-scheduled from 2023)

Judy Watson is an established illustrator of picture books and junior fiction, living and working in Frankston South on the outskirts of Melbourne. Judy grew up in an outdoorsy veterinary family with three passions: animals, art and books. After working as a veterinary nurse, then Front of House in a London theatre, she moved back to Australia and began learning about revegetation and Landcare, adding Australian plants and wildlife to her list of loves.
These led naturally to children’s book illustration and Judy’s work often features animals, and people’s close relationship with them, along with a touch of the theatre. She takes an experimental approach to new picture book projects, allowing ideas to cross-pollinate with her fine art practice, and often uses mixed media techniques, incorporating both computer and analogue elements in her finished work.
Judy’s illustration work has received awards including the Prime Minister’s Literary award in 2012 for her picture book ‘Goodnight, Mice!’ with Frances Watts, a CBCA Eve Pownall Award short-listing for her non-fiction picture book ‘Searching for Cicadas’ with Lesley Gibbes, and several CBCA notables. ‘Leonard Doesn’t Dance’ was selected by the International Youth Library for inclusion in the White Ravens Catalogue 2020. Illustrations for her latest book ‘When You’re Older’ with Sofie Laguna were shortlisted for the Bologna Children’s Book Fair illustrator exhibition and were included in the biennial Nami Concours. 
Judy is currently turning to writing with much enjoyment and will be working on both fiction and non-fiction during her stay in the Burrow in July. 

Claire Saxby

Claire Saxby writes fiction, non-fiction and poetry for young people. Her work is published both nationally and internationally. ‘Iceberg’, illustrated by Jess Racklyeft was awarded CBCA Picture Book of the Year 2022. Her middle grade historical novel, ‘The Wearing of the Green’ was shortlisted in the ARA HNSA Historical Novel Prize 2022, Book Links Children's Historical Fiction Award 2023, NSW Premiers History Award 2023 and is a CBCA Older Readers Notable Book 2023.‘Great White Shark’, illustrated by Cindy Lane was awarded RZSNSW Whitley Awards Best Children's Book 2022. Tasmanian Devil, illustrated by Max Hamilton was awarded RZSNSW Whitley Awards Children's Natural History Book. ‘Whisper on the Wind’, illustrated by Jess Rackyleft is a CBCA Notable Picture Book 2023.

Her latest book is ‘Secrets of the Saltmarsh’, ill Alicia Rogerson CSIRO Publishing. 'Tree', ill Jess Racklyeft Allen&Unwin and ‘Wedge-tailed Eagle, ill Christina Booth Walker Books Australia, will both be released in 2024.

Kathryn Apel

Kathryn Apel is the author of picture books, verse novels and poetry. Her writing is a combination of humour, heart, and home. She loves sharing a slice of rural life with readers. A born and bred farm girl, married to a grazier, Kat is still scared of cows!
2024 sees the release of Kathryn’s tenth book, MAD COWS, illustrated by Beau Wylie. Previous titles include the Speech Pathology Shortlisted Book, MISS UNDERSTOOD; a fractured fairy tale of the three little pigs told in rhyme by the wolf, and CBCA Notable Book, WHAT SNAIL KNOWS; a heart-squeeze verse novel about a shy girl coming out of her shell. 
Kathryn is perhaps best known for her younger reader verse novel, BULLY ON THE BUS, which won the CYA Competition, and the Australian Family Therapists’ Award for Children’s Literature, and was awarded an American Notable Social Studies Trade Book.  
Kat is passionate about poetry, both as a means of creative expression (for writers of all ages and abilities), but also as a tool (and toy) to develop writing muscle. Previously a teacher and literacy coach, Kat shares her love of story and creativity through interactive readings, book talks, and poetry workshops. She presents across genres and ages, from children to adult. In addition to Australian schools and festivals, Kat has presented at both the Sharjah International Book Fair, and Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival, and she has undertaken a 2-week tour of America, presenting at schools and community events. 
Living rural, Kathryn is looking forward to writing heaps during her Creative Time Fellowship – and networking (socialising) with the vibrant South Australian kidlit community!

Jenny Ruge

Originally from a small NSW country town, Jenny Ruge spent all of her working life in Sydney and the Blue Mountains, where she had a long career in education. She is a former teacher, researcher, academic and primary school principal, and retired to Queensland nine years ago. She now lives in sunny Redcliffe with her husband, and travels regularly to Melbourne to visit her daughters and grandsons.

 In 2018, Jenny took up writing for children for the first time and has subsequently completed several creative writing courses. In 2020, she was shortlisted for the Queensland Literary Awards Glendower Emerging Writer Award for her contemporary YA unpublished manuscript Without A Word. Her short story A Cautionary Tale, was published in the Queensland Writers Centre Right Left Write Anthology (2019-2020). Since that time, she has completed her second manuscript, an historical time-slip novel for middle grade readers. Jenny is currently working on revising both of her novel manuscripts with a view to submitting to publishers in the near future. Her project for the 2024 Ian Wilson Memorial Fellowship is a new historical time-slip novel set in South Australia, working title Unsinkable!.

 Jenny is a member of the Queensland Writers Centre, SCBWI, Book Links Qld Inc., and Write Links: Queensland’s Children’s Writers and Illustrators Group. When she’s not writing, Jenny loves reading, researching family history, and going down the rabbit-hole of historical research.