We are researchers in life writing, auto/biography, memoir, letters, diaries, graphic texts, documentary, & social media.

Professor Kate Douglas (she/her)
Research Group Leader
Kate Douglas is a Professor in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences at Flinders University. She is the author of the forthcoming Children and Biography: Reading and Writing Life Stories (Bloomsbury 2022). Previous publications include Contesting Childhood: Autobiography, Trauma and Memory (Rutgers, 2010) and Life Narratives and Youth Culture: Representation, Agency and Participation (Palgrave, 2016; with Anna Poletti) among others. Kate is the Head of the Steering committee for the International Auto/Biography Association’s Asia-Pacific chapter, and the series co-editor (with Anna Poletti and John Zuern) of Bloomsbury’s New Directions in Life Narrative. Kate’s allied research interests include: studies in childhood and youth, memory and trauma studies.

Associate Professor Kylie Cardell (she/her)
Research Group Leader
Kylie Cardell is Senior Lecture in Literary Studies at Flinders University, South Australia. She is the author of Dear World: Contemporary Uses of the Diary (University of Wisconsin Press, 2014), editor (with Kate Douglas) of Telling Tales: Autobiography of Childhood and Youth (Routledge, 2015)and Editor of the anthology Essays in Life Writing (Routledge 2021). Kylie is an executive member for IABA Asia-Pacific, and the Associate Editor for Life Writing journal. Her primary research interest is in practices of documenting the everyday, with a focus on marginal and ordinary forms of life writing, such as essays, diaries, letters, and comics, as well as social media and digital, online modes.

Anna Bagshaw (she/her)
Anna is a PhD Candidate in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences at Flinders University, South Australia. Her research explores early self-representation and the construction of selfhood in letter writing by childless women.  She is specifically interested in researching how identity for childless women has been negotiated in their letters within the Romantic movement.  She is also an academic librarian, lover of short stories and creative non-fiction, and dabbler in postcard flash fiction.  Anna currently lives, works and creates on the lands of the Turrbal and Yugara (Jagera) peoples.

Dr Katerina Bryant (she/her)
Katerina is a writer and research assistant at Flinders University. She is the author of Hysteria: A Memoir of Illness, Strength and Women’s Stories Throughout History (2020). Katerina’s practice-based doctoral research project, completed 2022, is a hybrid memoir/biography of the first woman clown in America. She is currently working on several projects that intersect with life narrative, including a book about chess, for the development of which she was awarded an SA Arts & Culture Project Grant in 2022.

Associate Professor Danielle Clode (she/her)
Danielle Clode (Flinders University) writes creative nonfiction and is the author of twelve books on various aspects of Australia’s environment and history. Her life writing includes creative feminist biographies on the lives of female naturalists. Her book on Edith Coleman The Wasp and the Orchid (Picador 2018) was shortlisted for the National Biography Award. In Search of the Woman who Sailed the World (Picador 2020) exploring how the life of Jeanne Barret, the first woman to circumnavigate the world, has been reconstructed over three centuries. Danielle’s books have won and been shortlisted for several awards and she’s held many writing fellowships.

Marina Deller (they/she)
Marina is an Adelaide-based writer, critic, and current PhD candidate in Creative Writing (Life Writing) at Flinders University. Their practice-led research examines fragmented life narratives of grief and trauma with a focus on material narratives. The project explores objects and personal possessions as loci of storytelling about loss, and it poses questions about materiality and reality, personhood and objectification, creative flow and creative paralysis.

Stefanie Gold (she/her)
Stefanie is a creative writer and doctoral candidate at Federation University. She resides in the regional town of Ballarat, Victoria. Stefanie’s PhD thesis combines creative and critical enquiry to explore how changeling folklore as metaphor and autosomatography may serve to convey the complexity of the trauma experience and disability lived experience within a life narrative of childhood sexual abuse. She is editor and co-founder of Paper Road Magazine.

Holly Hershman (she/her)
Holly is an Adelaide based writer and current PhD candidate in Creative Writing at Flinders University. Her practice-led research investigates the nature of life as a storied existence, through which humans come to understand themselves and others. Her project explores the therapeutic power of narrative and written expression to discover personal voice and re-author individual stories through autofictional forms. Holly has worked across a broad range of industries and is currently completing a Master of Counselling to complement her research.

Edith Hill (she/her)
Edith is a PhD candidate in the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences at Flinders University, South Australia. Her research explores health and wellness life narrative online, with a specific focus on Instagram and YouTube. She is particularly interested in the monetisation of health life narrative online, as well as health and wellness life narratives depicting women and children.

Dr Phillip Kavanagh (he/they)
Phillip Kavanagh is a queer, award-winning Australian playwright. Phillip’s PhD thesis, A Work of Fiction – A Memoir: A Creative Case Study of Metalepsis in Auto/biographical Writing (Flinders University, 2021), explores the thin line between fiction and reality, and how the narratological figure of metalepsis can be used as a tool for examining what happens when life writing practitioners come right up to that line—and even cross it. Phillip has been awarded the Patrick White Playwrights’ Award, Jill Blewett Playwright’s Award, STCSA Young Playwrights Award, and the Colin Thiele Creative Writing Scholarship.

Kirrily MacRaild (she/her)
Kirrily MacRaild is a secondary teacher of English and psychology and has a Master of Arts, specialising in Creative Writing, from Deakin University. Kirrily is a doctoral candidate at Flinders University, where she is writing a memoir that draws on her childhood archives to explore the lasting impact of having grown up in a military family. Kirrily currently writes and lives on the lands of the Wurundjeri Willum people.

Dr Emma Maguire (she/her)
Emma Maguire is a Lecturer in English and Creative Writing at James Cook University. Her research investigates girls’ and women’s auto/biography, with attention to the technological and economic dimensions of mediation. Her book Girls, Autobiography, Media: Gender and Self-Mediation in Digital Economies (2018) investigates autobiographical strategies employed by girls and young women in contemporary digital media, and how self-representations of youthful femininity are received and critiqued. She is currently researching women’s narratives of youth sexual trauma after #MeToo.

Dr Threasa Meads (she/her)
Dr Threasa Meads is a neurodivergent woman, writer, artist, academic, teacher, wife, and mother of cats. She is lecturer in writing at Federation University, Gippsland, Victoria, and the author of two liminal autobiographies Nobody and Mothsong (2016). Her work has been shortlisted for The Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award, awarded a Varuna Fellowship, awarded a KSP Writers’ Centre residency, and was most recently highly commended for the 2022 Viva la Novella Prize. Her writing has been published internationally.

Dr Sarah Peters (she/her)
Dr Peters is Senior Lecturer in Drama at Flinders University and book reviews editor for Australasian Drama Studies. Sarah is a playwright and theatre practitioner specialising in verbatim theatre and community-engaged theatre making. Her research investigates collaborative theatre making processes within an ethic of care, dramaturgies of theatre based on lived experiences, and the socio-political and inter-personal outcomes of arts engagement for participants.

Jordyn Presley (she/her)
Jordyn Presley is a regional Victorian creative writing PhD student at Federation University. Her research explores her interest in disability advocacy and the ways trauma and grief can intersect with lived experiences of incurable illness and invisible disabilities. She is currently navigating how to speak of her mother’s experiences of lupus using a fictional thread alongside illness and disability life writing. She is co-founder and Managing Editor of Paper Road Magazine.

Rebecca Ryall (she/her)
Rebecca is a PhD student at Flinders University living and working on unceded Widjabul:Waiabul lands in northern NSW.  Her research interests include people-place relationships, place-based ontologies and feminist composting methodologies. Her work takes a fictocritical approach to exploring multisensory engagements with place and place-beings, and has been published in print and online.  Rebecca’s work was also performed as part of the Voices of Women collaborative art project in 2018.

Dr Shannon Sandford (she/her)
Shannon Sandford is a Lecturer in Literary Studies at Griffith University, Queensland. Her research concerns innovative and interdisciplinary approaches to the study of Life Narrative in graphic and digital forms, paying particular attention to the ways in which platforms, affordances, and audiences across both visual and digital cultures contribute to evolving perspectives on personal storytelling. She explores stories of illness, precarity, loss, and trauma that emerge through exploratory and experimental literary forms which combine visual artistry with modern methods of production, consumption, and circulation.

Dr Rachel Spencer (she/her)
Dr Rachel Spencer is Adjunct Associate Professor, Flinders University, South Australia and she holds a PhD in Creative Writing. Her professional experience spans legal practice, tertiary education, creative writing, research, professional writing, teaching, and management. Rachel’s current research interests include legal ethics, clinical legal education, reflective practice, experiential learning, the links between law, literature and popular culture, how media representations of lawyers (both real and fictional) affect access to justice, and the role of narrative in the adversarial system. Her current focus is on true crime and the ethics of life writing, and she is writing a book that straddles the genres of true crime and life-narrative.

Dr Lucy Stone (she/her)
Lucy Stone is an award-winning Children’s Literature scholar currently working and living on unceded lands of the Kaurna people. Recipient of a Research Excellence Academy studentship from Newcastle University, UK, Stone’s recent doctoral project is one of the first sustained studies of drawings and writings made by displaced children in the Nazi era. Stone has contributed to multiple research outputs, including the book Intergenerational Solidarity in Children’s Literature and Film (University of Mississippi 2021), and she is writing a book on juvenilia by children’s author-illustrators Judith Kerr (1923 – 2019) and Tomi Ungerer (1931 – 2019).