Deanne Lister was born in Somerset, England, and had a classical education at a small convent school, then at the college of Sarum St. Michael in Salisbury. "Literature and languages were my love at a time when much was learned by rote. I still remember most of my Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Keats and Matthew Arnold, not to mention a good smattering of Chaucer. Since then I have fallen in love with Dylan Thomas and various Australian poets such as Judith Wright and Bruce Dawe. They may be a world apart, but they all have a wonderful way with words. (There’s a good case of alliteration!)
Judith Bandidt is a founding member of Sunshine Coast's The Pente Poets which launched in Flaxton in 2006. "Having spent much of my life in country areas of Queensland, my writing often reflects my rural roots and love of the land and its people. This life experience—along with other landscapes, seascapes and mindscapes encountered in my travels—provides the settings for my literary efforts. Living now in the serenity of the Sunshine Coast hinterland, I have found a new ambience for my creative pursuits and I enjoy exploring a variety of genre—adult fiction, children’s stories, historical non-fiction, song lyrics, poetry. Wherever I find myself, I draw inspiration from my surroundings.
Barry Charles is a seasoned and respected singer-songwriter. He offers up some powerful and jaw dropping vocals, mixed in with harmonica and a punchy percussive style of guitar playing. His captivating performances encompass deep grooves, digging into the soul and message of a song and leaving that original number or a selective cover he's just played with you, with his own interpretation and mesmerising energy.
Mary-Lou Stephens is a musician, radio announcer, author and interviewer who has happily retired from her radio job to become a full-time writer on the beautiful Sunshine Coast and an in-demand author interviewer at festivals and events. Mary-Lou began her music career playing in bands, touring and releasing CDs. She then studied acting at the Victorian College of the Arts and played in bands in Melbourne, Hobart and Sydney – and then the doorway to radio opened – a career that spanned 18 years.
Torres Strait Islander Alister Bartholomew grew up in Brisbane, where there is a strong TSI community attached to the Anglican Church, and attended Kelvin Grove State High School. His mother was born on Saibai Island in the Torres Strait. Alister is a Learning Skills Mentor with Indigenous Services at the University of the Sunshine Coast and is passionate about strengthening partnerships between educational institutions and the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families.