_MG_7889_photo_by_AnnaJacobsonEvN is at the forefront of an Indigenous literary renaissance, and builds for others to follow. Ellen’s work, on the page and off, echoes across the very architecture of writing in Australia today and will echo long into the future. Alison Whittaker.

Born in Meanjin in 1990, Ellen van Neerven (they/them) is an award-winning writer, editor and educator of Mununjali Yugambeh and Dutch heritage with strong ancestral ties to south east queensland. They write fiction, poetry and non-fiction, and play football on unceded Turrbal and Yuggera land. van Neerven’s first book, Heat and Light (UQP, 2014), a hybrid fictional text, was the recipient of the David Unaipon Award, the Dobbie Literary Award and the New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards Indigenous Writers Prize.  Comfort Food (UQP, 2016) was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards Kenneth Slessor Prize and Highly Commended for the 2016 Wesley Michel Wright Prize. Throat (UQP, 2020), van Neerven’s latest poetry collection, and recipient of the inaugural Quentin Bryce Award, is now available.

They are the editor of three collections, including the recent Homeland Calling: Words from a New Generation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voices and are co-editing an upcoming collection of Blak + Black Visionary and Speculative fiction Unlimited Futures with Sudanese multilingual writer Rafeif Ismail.

‘SWIM’, a performance piece about water sovereignty and queer bodies, featured at the Yellamundie First Peoples Playwriting Festival in Sydney in January 2019, and the QPAC Sparks program in November 2019.

publicist: Louise Cornege 

agent: Emma Paterson 

photo credit: Anna Jacobson


  • Upcoming

    Throat on Tour


    May 7     The Wheeler Centre (live stream) w Maxine Beneba Clarke. No bookings required.

    May 13   Avid Reader (Zoom launch) w Dr Anita Heiss. Bookings required.