Sheryl Gwyther’s mango-gorging, tree-climbing, pirate ship-building and book-reading adventures as a child in far north Queensland inevitably led to her becoming an author.
Published work includes Sweet Adversity, an historical adventure novel set in the Great Depression (release date July 1, 2018, HarperCollins). Secrets of Eromanga, a junior adventure novel set on an outback dinosaur fossil dig. While writing this story Sheryl worked on an outback Queensland fossil dig … helping to excavate Elliot, one of the biggest dinosaurs found in Australia. Pestering palaeontologists on site with questions ensured her novel rings with authenticity.
Her work also includes many chapter book titles, short stories and school plays for children in The School Magazine and New Zealand’s Junior Journal, and 500-word Flash Fiction for adults. She especially loves bringing science, history and art history into her short stories.
An experienced primary/early childhood teacher, TAFE teacher (plus a stint teaching Adult Literacy in Boggo Road jail) and creative writing teacher, Sheryl delivers interesting, informative, engaging and practical writing workshops and author talks for all ages and situations – from classrooms and libraries to writing conferences and literary festivals.
Her workshops include:
- Enthusing the love of books and storytelling in the very young
- Developing young imaginations
- Tackling the nitty-gritty of story writing - for older children and adults
- How to write historical novels without drowning them with facts
- How to develop complete story characters
- How to use the senses to build up description and emotion
- How to catch and develop story ideas by planning and outlining
- How to use research to build authentic characters and story-telling worlds
Workshops and talks are based around Shery’s books, but can be adapted to your needs. All workshops follow the Australian National Curriculum’s three interrelated strands for English, Language, Literature and Literacy.
Sheryl, just wanted to say a BIG thank you for being so terrific on Saturday -- you'd put a lot of thought into it, and it was so appreciated ... Susan Johnson, author and journalist.
Thank you, Sheryl! It was so great to meet you today and you did a beautiful job. I hope our paths cross again! ... Lauren Elise Daniels, author and editor
Sandcliffe Writers Festival - May, 2017Sandcliffe Writers Festival - May, 2017Sheryl Gwyther
Our students enjoyed Sheryl's Author-in-Residence with us. She did a great job appealing to such a range of ages and I appreciate the preparation she put in ahead of time.
Her sessions also inspired the older grades who have not yet read Secrets of Eromanga to continue and use the text in their lessons. The students have even done some follow up research about the Elliot dinosaur.
Sheryl Gwyther - Cindy Grimes, Chinchilla State SchoolSheryl Gwyther - Cindy Grimes, Chinchilla State SchoolSheryl Gwyther
Sheryl Gwyther was an absolute pleasure to host in our school library. In preparing for her visit, she was approachable, flexible, organised and interested in what the teachers and students would like to hear and learn about.
Sheryl planned a range of activities for across the year levels (Reception - Year 6) and shared an age-appropriate range of books, stories, experiences and writing tips
The students particularly loved listening to Sheryl's current writing journey with Vivaldi's Angel and are eagerly awaiting to read it one day soon! Sheryl's other books, including Secrets of Eromanga, Charlie and the Red Hot Chilli Pepper and Ali Berber and the Forty Grains of Salt have been constantly borrowed by our students since her visit!
Sheryl very kindly shared with us extra information to help follow-up lessons, as well as photos from our sessions and writing tips for the students. She also very kindly offered to be an online support for students interested in writing.
Sheryl Gwyther - Lucy Dabrowski, T/Librarian, Scotch College Adelaide 2015Sheryl Gwyther - Lucy Dabrowski, T/Librarian, Scotch College Adelaide 2015Sheryl Gwyther
Thank you for helping us be better writers. Apart from that we enjoyed just spending time with you! I hope this card gives you some inspiration for another book!
Sheryl Gwyther - Kate, aged 10, Ashgrove State School 2015Sheryl Gwyther - Kate, aged 10, Ashgrove State School 2015Sheryl Gwyther
I just wanted to check in and thank you again. After having time to think and consider I just wanted to reinforce how much our students enjoyed your three days. All the conversations I have had confirm this. You did a great job appealing to such a range of ages and I appreciated the preparation you put in ahead of time. Your session has inspired the older grades who have not read Secrets yet to continue and use the text in their lessons. The students are interested in this and some have done some follow up research about the Elliot dinosaur.
Sheryl Gwyther - Chinchilla State School, August, 2012Sheryl Gwyther - Chinchilla State School, August, 2012Sheryl Gwyther