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Anita Heiss

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Anita Heiss

Goodreads Author


Born
Sydney, Australia
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Member Since
June 2012


Professor Anita Heiss – bio

Anita is a proud member of the Wiradjuri nation of central New South Wales, and is one of Australia’s most prolific and well-known authors, publishing across genres, including non-fiction, historical fiction, commercial fiction and children’s novels.

Her adult fiction includes Not Meeting Mr Right, Avoiding Mr Right, Manhattan Dreaming, Paris Dreaming and Tiddas. Her most recent books include Barbed Wire and Cherry Blossoms which was longlisted for the Dublin International Literary Prize and was named the University of Canberra’s 2020 Book of the Year.

The anthology Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia which Anita edited, was named the Small Publisher Adult Book of the Year at the 2019 Australian Book Industry Awards
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Popular Answered Questions

Anita Heiss I’m often asked for advice on writing chick lit and so I thought I’d put my top tips here for those on the road to writing their first novel! Hope the…moreI’m often asked for advice on writing chick lit and so I thought I’d put my top tips here for those on the road to writing their first novel! Hope they’re helpful.

Write characters you yourself would like to hang out with. The kinds of women you would have fun with, would empathise with, would feel comfortable sharing your oh so embarrassing stories with.

Read in the genre, read around the genre to understand the difference between chick lit and romance. In chick lit our characters don’t have to end up with Mr. Right, but they do have to evolve and grow.

Think about what YOU like as a reader of chick lit and work your own story and style around that. I’ve learned that readers of my work appreciate characters they can relate to and settings they live in, have lived in, have been to, or want to go to. Entice your readers through your settings to want to go to the places you write about. i.e. Canberra, Melbourne, Paris, Manhattan. I have also written about towns I love that may never be on the literary map otherwise: Moree and Deniliquin (Paris Dreaming), and Goulburn (Manhattan Dreaming) for example.

Research is just as important in Chick Lit as any other book. To me research is as important as the writing. I wouldn’t have much of my material without extensive research. I don’t write about places I haven’t been to, because I want my settings to be authentic. So I go and sit in the suburb or the town and I watch, listen, eat local produce, smell what’s around me, talk to locals and ask them things like local myths, or where’s the best coffee, what’s the most significant land mark. I ask them, what a story about their place must include. I spent a lot of time researching in Melbourne for Avoiding Mr Right. I had to eat cakes and other delish pastries from every shop in Acland Street. I do suffer for my craft.

Best research tip: Always make a schedule for your research. Have a plan of what you need to see, who you need to speak to, where you need to go. I am very structured in my research and usually compact it into a certain period of time early on in the process. I don’t usually start writing until the bulk of research is complete.(less)
Average rating: 4.02 · 7,994 ratings · 1,241 reviews · 35 distinct worksSimilar authors
Growing Up Aboriginal in Au...

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4.31 avg rating — 3,079 ratings — published 2018 — 12 editions
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Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray

4.20 avg rating — 2,030 ratings — published 2021 — 7 editions
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Barbed Wire and Cherry Blos...

3.73 avg rating — 484 ratings — published 2016 — 8 editions
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Am I Black Enough For You?

3.84 avg rating — 459 ratings — published 2012 — 12 editions
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Tiddas

3.35 avg rating — 407 ratings — published 2014 — 8 editions
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Who Am I? The Diary Of Mary...

3.95 avg rating — 324 ratings — published 2001 — 8 editions
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Manhattan Dreaming

3.24 avg rating — 250 ratings — published 2010 — 4 editions
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Not Meeting Mr Right

2.99 avg rating — 183 ratings5 editions
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Paris Dreaming

3.46 avg rating — 148 ratings — published 2011 — 3 editions
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Avoiding Mr Right

3.17 avg rating — 109 ratings — published 2008 — 9 editions
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More books by Anita Heiss…

SIMON & SCHUSTER AUSTRALIA ACQUIRES RIGHTS TO FOUR BACKLIST TITLES BY ANITA HEISS

Simon & Schuster Australia is thrilled to announce the acquisition of four romantic fiction backlist titles by Anita Heiss: Not Meeting Mr Right, Avoiding Mr RightManhattan Dreaming and Paris Dreaming.  Originally published between 2007 and 2011, all four titles will be re-released between April and September 2023 featuring new cover treatments. Simon & Schuster Australia has previously publishe Read more of this blog post »
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Published on January 19, 2023 00:47
Our Race For Reconciliation
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Anita’s Recent Updates

Anita is now friends with Catherine
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The Cherry Picker's Daughter by Kerry Reed-Gilbert
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Lily's Little Flower Shop by Lisa Darcy
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I've read all of Lisa Darcy's (Heidke) novels and each one provides a message on living life to the fullest.

Lily's Little flower Shop is a reminder to face life's challenges, and to follow your dreams.
If you need some inspiration on that front, the
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A book all Australians should read - Kerry Reed-Gilbert's life speaks to the history and reality of life for Wiradjuri people in central NSW. ...more
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The Mother Fault by Kate Mildenhall
The Mother Fault
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Unputdownable!
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Lily's Little Flower Shop by Lisa Darcy
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I've read all of Lisa Darcy's (Heidke) novels and each one provides a message on living life to the fullest.

Lily's Little flower Shop is a reminder to face life's challenges, and to follow your dreams.
If you need some inspiration on that front, the
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More of Anita's books…
Quotes by Anita Heiss  (?)
Quotes are added by the Goodreads community and are not verified by Goodreads. (Learn more)

“How can you possibly be an agent of positive change in the world when you are full of bitterness and hatred?”
Anita Heiss, Am I Black Enough For You?

“Who do we know in Canberra who wears a suit?’ Libby asked. ‘More importantly, who looks good?’ I asked. ‘Stephen Smith,’ Libby offered. ‘Wayne Swan,’ Denise countered. ‘Peter Garrett?’ Libby asked ‘Greg Combet, most definitely,’ I insisted. ‘Julia Gillard,’ Libby said adamantly. Both Denise and I looked at her strangely. ‘What? Seriously, she wears a suit better than any of those guys. Especially that purple one she has.”
Anita Heiss, Manhattan Dreaming

“Using Wiradjuri language on the cover of my novel makes a strong statement … regarding the reclamation and maintenance of the traditional language of my family.”
Anita Heiss, Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray

Polls

What should be our October Read Around the World book (Oceania)?

 
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Resurrection Bay by Emma Viskic (Australia)
 
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34 total votes
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Topics Mentioning This Author

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The Great Barrier...: Aboriginal Books 3 5 Sep 19, 2013 03:45AM  
Australian Women ...: Sally906's 2013 Challenge 20 54 Nov 14, 2013 03:20AM  
“Who do we know in Canberra who wears a suit?’ Libby asked. ‘More importantly, who looks good?’ I asked. ‘Stephen Smith,’ Libby offered. ‘Wayne Swan,’ Denise countered. ‘Peter Garrett?’ Libby asked ‘Greg Combet, most definitely,’ I insisted. ‘Julia Gillard,’ Libby said adamantly. Both Denise and I looked at her strangely. ‘What? Seriously, she wears a suit better than any of those guys. Especially that purple one she has.”
Anita Heiss, Manhattan Dreaming

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message 2: by Anita

Anita Thanks Karen - I'm just getting the hang of this but will pop over to your page right now (and I'll tweet your link!). Much peace, Anita


message 1: by Karen

Karen Tyrrell Thanks Anita for friending,
Please check out Me and Her: A Memoir of Madness,
A Teachers gutsy story of parent harassment, mental breakdown & Recovery. How did I reclaim my life?
http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/...
Cheers,
Karen :)


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