About

Megan McGrath is an award-winning fiction writer from Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island) in Queensland, Australia. She has written for The New York Times, Meanjin, Griffith Review and Tracks, among others. Her short story collection, All Hands, is a runner up for the 2019 Carmel Bird digtial literary Award, published by Spineless Wonders.

twitter @meganmcgraths | instagram @litbuild | goodreads Megan McGrath

Publications

  • Spineless Wonders (September 2019) 'All Hands: collected stories' ISBN 9781925052466 120pp. Buy online.

  • The New York Times (December 2016) ‘Help for Australia’s Coal Workers’.
  • Tincture Journal (September 2016) ‘Making Noise: Ellen van Neerven’, Issue 15
  • Tincture Journal (June 2016) ‘Making Noise: Anna Spargo-Ryan’, Issue 14
  • Writing Queensland magazine (April 2016) ‘On still emerging’.
  • Tincture Journal (March 2016) ‘Making Noise: David Burton’, Issue 13

  • Tracks magazine (February 2016) ‘The Cape’, vol. 546, pp. 111
  • Tracks magazine (July 2015) ‘Fins’, vol. 538, pp. 111
  • Writing Queensland magazine (June 2015) ‘Project: Novella’.
  • Tracks magazine (March 2015) ‘Brother Bird’, vol. 534, pp. 123
  • Griffith Review (October 2014) ‘Whale station’, vol. 46, pp. 60-118
  • Meanjin (July 2014) ‘What I’m Reading’, read online

  • Queensland Writers Centre (June 2014) ‘The Writer’s Guides’
  • Read Live Enjoy (October 2013) ‘Foreword’, pp. I-III
  • Seizure Journal (March 2013) ‘The Breakers’, read online

  • Tiny Owl Workshop (February 2013) ‘Like Yellow Roses’.
  • Dexian Racking (February 2012) ‘Glass Houses’, vol. 2 The Femme Fatale
  • Imagining the City (November 2011) ‘Bureaucracy for the Broken-Hearted’.
  • Australian Literature Review (October 2011) ‘Farewell, the Sea’
  • Dexian Racking (September 2011) ‘Friends Like These’, vol. 2 The Swamp
  • One Book Many Brisbanes (May 2011) ‘The River City’, vol. 6, pp. 12-22
  • Wordy MoFo (December 2010) ‘The X-Philes’, vol. 3
  • Wordy MoFo (October 2010) ‘Twelve of one, half a dozen of the other’, vol. 1
  • Griffith REVIEW (March 2010) ‘The lunar coast’, vol. 28, pp. 251-259
  • WQ Magazine (October 2009) ‘The Waiting Game’, vol. 189, pp. 12
  • The Courier Mail (September 2009) ‘The lunar coast’, pp. 25
  • lip Magazine (May 2007) ‘Talking the talk’, vol. 13, pp. 45
  • lip Magazine (December 2006) ‘Tough Break’, vol. 12, pp. 31

Awards

  • Runner-up in the Carmel Bird digital literary Award (2019) for 'All Hands: collected stories'.

  • Winner of the Fellowship of Australian Writers Alice Sinclair Award (2016) for ‘Tell-tale’.
  • Winner of the Queensland Literary Awards – Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Award (2015).
  • Winner of the Griffith Review Novella Project II (2014) for ‘Whale station’.
  • Winner of AusLit Espionage & Deceit Short Story Competition (2011) for ‘Farewell, the Sea’.
  • Shortlisted for the Katharine Susannah Prichard Young Writer-in-Residence Program (2010)
  • Winner of the State Library of Queensland Young Writers Award (2009) for ‘The lunar coast’.
  • Longlisted for the State Library of Queensland Young Writers Award (2008) for ‘Gerald’.
  • Winner of the State Library of Queensland Young Writers Award: Maureen Donahoe Prize (2007) for ‘Fuel for Loneliness’.
  • Highly Commended for the State Library of Queensland Young Writers Award (2006) for ‘NSI’.

Writing

All Hands, Whale Station and The lunar coast

All Hands

Runner up in the Carmel Bird digital literary Award

Published by Spineless Wonders | buy ebook (PDF) | buy ebook (Amazon)

From Broome to Moreton Bay, these eight collected stories traverse the weathered boundaries of our island nation. Exploring relationships, masculinity, redemption and growth on the Australian coast, All Hands maps the sea-change of the ever-shifting Australian dream.

'All Hands sits in the tradition of Tim Winton’s Western Australian stories of masculinity and the ocean. [Here] the Australian coast is not simply a sunshine haven, but a vastly rugged home for personal reflection and growth.'

 

Stories

Brother Bird

A young boy defends the birds, but can his sister protect him from the cruelty of others.

The Cape

Emma searches for meaning and escape on the wild outer reef at the Cape.

The lunar coast

Friendships are tested in a remote fishing town when the tide goes out and doesn’t come back in.

Tell-tale

Small-town rivalries push a failing journalist to change direction and finally put his heart on the line (with the help of a few moves from Titanic).  

The Breakers

When the wind turns, father and daughter bodysurf the breakers.

All Hands

An exiled trophy-husband returns to his parents’ beachfront home seeking comfort and instead gets a reality check.

Everything and nothing

Poppy promises her friend Leah a best-selling finance book will change her life. But when a seal and a bloke arrive to town, Leah wonders if money means everything, or nothing.  (Inspired by Scott Pape's The Barefoor Investor)

The Beachcombers

Found washed ashore on an island, Eddie is taken in by eccentric Jean who collects flotsam and jetsam from the sea. But is Jean trying to help Eddie, or does she want to make him part of her collection?

Whale Station

Winner of the Copyright Agency Cultural Fund / Griffith Review Novella Project II

Published in Griffith Review 46: Forgotten Stories

August 1962 in Moreton Bay. The Tangalooma whaling station has closed and Rick is twenty-six and out of work. Whaling since his teens, he’s made his home on North Stradbroke Island with his bride-to-be Camilla and his Norwegian crewmate Christian.

Without work Christian and Camilla face immediate deportation. If Rick can’t get Christian onto the whale chaser, the Looma, for their next contract in Western Australia, he will lose Camilla forever.

"Megan McGrath’s moving novella about identity and industries in change returns the reader to Australia’s recent whaling past; it is a story about the mistakes we continue to make, about the crippling power of love and the grip of small towns."

Buy the e-single.

Buy Griffith Review 46: Forgotten Stories print edition.

The lunar coast

Winner of the Sate Library of Queensland Young Writers Award

Published in Griffith Review 28: Still The Lucky Country

Friendships are tested in a remote fishing town on the west coast of Australia when the tide goes out and doesn’t come back in.

 

Hello to students studying this story for school in Australia, the Faroe Islands, or eslewhere.  Please do get in touch with any questions you have about the themes or inspiration.

Speaking and Events

Panels and readings

  • Young Writers Conference (July 2018), South Brisbane
  • Young Writers Conference (November 2017), South Brisbane
  • Express Media’s “Tracks” (October 2017), East Brisbane
  • Literary Salon (July 2017) ‘The Cape’ and ‘The Night Catch’, South Brisbane QLD.
  • Brisbane Writers Festival (September 2016) ‘The Sound: Sarah Drummond’, Brisbane QLD.
  • Brisbane Writers Festival (September 2016) ‘Memoir Reading Series’, Brisbane QLD.
  • Emerging Writers Festival (June 2015) ‘Freelancing for Life’, Melbourne VIC.
  • Emerging Writers Festival (June 2015) ‘How To Be a Writer’, Melbourne VIC.
  • Emerging Writers Festival (June 2015) ‘What You Wish You’d Known in High School’, Melbourne VIC.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (May 2015) ‘Launch Lab’, Brisbane QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (February 2015) ‘Meet the Publishers’, Sunshine Coast QLD.
  • Whispers salon (December 2014) ‘Whale station’.
  • 4zzz Book Club (November 2014) ‘Whale station’.
  • Avid Reader (November 2014) ‘Whale station’.
  • The Wheeler Centre (October 2014) ‘The Novella: Forgotten Stories’, Melbourne VIC.
  • Brisbane Writers Festival (September 2014) ‘Inspire: Adventure’, Brisbane QLD.
  • GenreCon (October 2013) ‘What Writers Get Wrong’, Brisbane QLD.
  • Brisbane Writers Festival (September 2013) ‘Into the Woods’, Brisbane QLD.
  • Whispers salon (June 2013) ‘Angeles’.
  • Voices on the Coast Youth Literature Festival (April 2013) ‘Journey of the Book’, Sunshine Coast QLD.
  • Brisbane City Council Libraries (March 2013) ‘Blogging and Author Platforms’, Mt Gravatt QLD.
  • Somerset Celebration of Literature (February 2013) ‘Blogging and Author Platforms’, Gold Coast QLD.
  • Brisbane Writers Festival (September 2005) Emerging Writers Showcase.
  • The Courier Mail (August 2005) Write Small Competition.

Workshops and seminars

  • Queensland Writers Center (October 2018) 'The Art of Story', South Brisbane QLD.
  • Brisbane City Council Libraries (June 2018) 'Fact or Fiction', Fairfield QLD
  • Queensland Writers Centre (February 2018) ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’, Mt Gravatt QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (October & November 2017) ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’, Southport & Sunnybank QLD
  • Queensland Writers Centre (July 2017) ‘Fact or Fiction’, Mt Ommaney QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (June 2017) ‘Introduction to Journaling’, Kenmore QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (March 2017) ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’, Ashgrove QLD.
  • Scenic Rim Writers (August 2016) ‘Writing Short Stories’, Beaudesert QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (May 2016, June 2013) ‘Write On!’, Brisbane QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (May 2016, May 2014, September 2013) ‘Toolkit for Writers’, Brisbane QLD.
  • State Library of Queensland (March 2016) ‘Word Up’, South Brisbane QLD.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (March 2016, March 2014, July 2013) ‘Introduction to Creative Writing / Writing 101’, Brisbane QLD.
  • IMPACT Centre / Backbone Youth Arts (March 2016) ‘Inspiring Creativity’, [Online]
  • Emerging Writers Festival (June 2015) ‘Freelancing for Life Masterclass’, Melbourne VIC.
  • Queensland Writers Centre (April 2015) ‘To Market, To Market’, Brisbane QLD.
  • State Library of Queensland/QWC Regional Workshops (June 2014) ‘Short Story Writing’, Brisbane QLD.
  • State Library of Queensland/QWC Regional Workshops (June 2014) ‘Short Story Writing’, Gold Coast QLD.
  • State Library of Queensland/QWC Regional Workshops (May 2014) ‘Short Story Writing’, Townsville QLD.
  • Sandcliffe Writers Festival (August 2013) ‘Blogging and Author Platforms’, Bracken Ridge QLD.
  • The Australian Writers Marketplace (April 2013) ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’, [Online]