About Me

The short:

Kate O’Donnell is a writer, editor and bookseller specialising in children’s and young adult literature. She has a BA in History and French from the University of Melbourne and studied Professional Writing and Editing at RMIT. Untidy Towns is her first novel.

The longer:

I’m a children’s book editor and young adult author based in Melbourne.

I grew up in the first golden age of Australian YA literature (i.e. the 90s) and have worked as a bookseller since I was fourteen, when I got my start packing school booklists through hot summers in the agricultural & livestock sheds at the Geelong Showgrounds. (Do I still imagine this place as the Wirrawee setting for Tomorrow, When the War Began? Why, yes, yes I do.)

I was a commended entrant in the Ray Koppe Young Writers’ Residency in 2012. I  wrote the last sentence of the manuscript in 2015 and it will be published by UQP in 2017. I am no longer considered a “young writer” but I suppose I don’t mind.

I still work as a children’s bookseller, at The Younger Sun bookshop, and as a Project Editor with Scribble Kids’ Books, an imprint of Scribe Publications.

The most important:

Will pat your dog.




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