Writers Judges for 2017 

Lisa Heidke 
Pamela Cook


 Lisa Heidke s  Pamela

Once upon a time, Lisa Heidke made a New Year’s resolution to write a book. Like most people, Lisa woke up on January 1with a headache. Unlike most people who’d made resolutions the night before, she took two Nurofen and started writing.

The result was Lucy Springer Gets Even (A & U, 2009), followed by What Kate did Next (A & U, 2010), Claudia’s Big Break (A & U, 2011), and Stella Makes Good (A & U, 2012). Then  It Started with a Kiss and The Callahan Split were released in 2015.

You can read all about Lisa here, on her website or read recent posts on her blog. She also teaches Popular Womens Fiction workshops at the Sydney Writers’ Centre.

You can also follow her on twitter @lisaheidke and find her Facebook author page.

After growing up in Brisbane, I ran away to Sydney, via London, and worked in book and magazine publishing. After many years living in the inner west, I was surprised one morning to wake up and find myself with three children and living on the North Shore.

I’m not one of those people who’ve always wanted to write a novel…okay, I am one of those people. But it wasn’t until a few years ago I seriously challenged myself to do something about it. In fact, it was during an alcohol fuelled New Year’s Eve party where friends had been discussing the merits of a newly published novel.

‘I could write that,’ I blurted to anyone who’d listen. I’ve long forgotten the title of the book from that night, but the idea of writing my own novel, quickly became my New Year’s resolution. The next morning after taking two Nurofen + I stared at the computer and then sat down to write.

I thought it would be easy. Why not? I had some ideas, so set myself up with several ‘how to’ books, a corner of an overcrowded spare room I could call my own – and was filled with great enthusiasm—confident that at the following New Year’s Eve do, I’d be one of the very few who’d managed to keep their resolution. I’d have written my first novel and would be well on my way to publication.

In my dreams! That was thirteen long years ago.



Pamela Cook is a city girl with a country lifestyle - and too many horses.

Her rural fiction novels feature complex women, tangled family relationships and a sprinkling of romance.

Her first novel, Blackwattle Lake, was published in 2012 after being selected for the Queensland Writer’s Centre/Hachette Manuscript Development Program.

Her following novels were Essie’s Way (2013) and Close To Home (2015) and her fourth book, The Crossroads was released in December 2016. An eclectic reader.

Pamela also enjoys writing poetry, memoir pieces and literary fiction and is proud to be a Writer Ambassador for Room To Read, a not-for-profit organisation that promotes literacy and gender equality in developing countries.

When she’s not writing she wastes as much time as possible riding her handsome quarter horses, Morocco and Rio.

Pamela teaches writing courses and workshops through her business, Justwrite. www.justwrite.net.au

She loves to connect with readers both in person and online. You will often find her lurking in one of these places: