Grief hits hard – especially when you’re young. From travelling across a hostile country after the death of your mother to literally navigating the afterlife in search of your dad, there are many ways to deal with loss. In their work, authors Leanne Hall (The Gaps), Zana Fraillon (The Lost Soul Atlas) and Cath Moore (Metal Fish, Falling Snow) show teens handling painful realities with humour, ingenuity and the help of their friends. They sit down with Youth Curator Neva Mikulic to discuss grief, friendship and simply coping.

Zana Fraillon (Australian)

Zana Fraillon

Zana Fraillon is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning author, with work published in over 15 countries. Her 2016 novel The Bone Sparrow won the ABIA Book of the Year for Older Children, the Readings Young Adult Book Prize and the Amnesty CILIP Honour. It was also shortlisted for the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards, the Queensland Literary Awards, the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize, the Gold Inky and the CILIP Carnegie Medal. The Lost Soul Atlas is her third book for young adult readers.

Cath Moore (Australian)

Cath Moore

Of Afro Caribbean and Anglo Irish heritage, Cath Moore is a writer, filmmaker and educator. She has written for The Age, The Pin, SBS Life and The Huffington Post Australia. Cath works as a story developer for screen content and holds a PhD in Danish screenwriting preferences. She works in the creative writing department at The University of Melbourne. Most recently her debut novel Metal Fish, Falling Snow won the Victorian Premier’s award for YA literature 2020.

Leanne Hall (Australian)

Leanne Hall

Leanne Hall is an author of young adult and children’s fiction. Her debut novel, This Is Shyness, won the Text Prize for Children’s and Young Adult Writing, and was followed by a sequel, Queen of the Night. Her novel for younger readers, Iris and the Tiger, won the Patricia Wrightson Prize for Children’s Literature at the 2017 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Leanne works as a children’s and YA specialist at an independent bookshop and her fourth book, The Gaps, will be published in March, 2021.

Neva Mikulic (Australian)

Neva Mikulic (she/her) is a Year 11 student at Sydney Girls High School with a strong interest in debating, literature, history and drama. She is a current Sydney Writers’ Festival Youth Curator.