Well, we can’t believe that the second annual AFTS conference has been and gone! What a wonderful day of thought-provoking discussion and inspiration. Thank you to all of our presenters, attendees and those working behind the scenes – you all came together to create a special vibe of warmth (despite it being mid-winter!) and camaraderie.
We are currently looking at our footage and sound recordings from the day, so if the tech fairies are working in our favour, then we should be able to put most of the presentations online as we did last year.
On the day of the conference we also had the AGM and the election of the new committee. It was with sadness that we farewelled our wonderful first president, Reilly McCarron, and our very extraordinary ordinary member, Thang Luong. We will miss you!
Most roles were filled at the AGM, though we have had a couple of members join since then. Now introducing the new AFTS committee…
President – Belinda Calderone
Belinda Calderone is currently teaching and completing her PhD in Literary Studies at Monash University. Her thesis is entitled ‘Mothers, Monsters and Midwives: The Evolution of Motherhood in European Fairy Tales.’ She has published and given conference papers on various aspects of the fairy tale genre and has a book chapter in Beyond the Monstrous: Reading from the Cultural Imaginary.
Vice President – Dr Nike Sulway
Dr Nike Sulway is a writer and academic. She is the author of several novels, including Rupetta, which—in 2014—was the first work by an Australian writer to win the James Tiptree, Jr Award. The award, founded in 1991 by Pat Murphy and Karen Joy Fowler, is an annual award for a work of “science fiction or fantasy that expands or explores our understanding of gender”. She teaches creative writing at the University of Southern Queensland.
Secretary – Susan Clancy
I have loved folk tales and fairy tales all my life, from when they were read to me as a young child to when I could borrow collections from the library to today where I still collect fairy tale and folklore literature, watch as many films as possible that use such stories as their starting point and read everything I find that relates in some way to these tales. I am particularly interested in the way transformations of these tales have taken place over the years and across cultures and exploring why some are more successful than others.
Treasurer – Catherine Snell
Catherine Snell is currently undertaking her Honours year at Monash University and holds a BA with majors in History and Literary Studies. Her thesis will examine the representation of the environment in Australian fairy tales, currently a work in progress. She attributes her interest in fairy tales to a childhood love of reading.
Ordinary Member and Public Officer – Jo Henwood
Jo Henwood is an Accredited Storyteller with the Storytelling Guild of NSW, co-founder and Public Officer of the Australian Fairy Tale Society, and the Ring Maiden who coordinates the Fairy Tale Rings. She is qualified in Cultural Heritage, Museum Studies, Gifted Education, Tour Guiding, and Librarianship. As well as storytelling Jo works as a Tour Guide and Education Officer in various Sydney heritage sites. She also organises the Professional Development Days for Museums Australia Education and the first World Storytelling Day celebrated in Sydney. Her favourite fairy tales have turned out to be the Animal Bridegroom variants. Her greatest delight in the AFTS has been discovering new meanings in familiar tales and being provoked to create Australian interpretations, as well as meeting some fascinating people.
Ordinary Member – Gypsy Thornton
Aussie abroad, human/zombie hybrid & fairy tale writer/researcher-mama who wishes she had tastier brains to snack on. (Grows her own hair.) Known as the Fairy Tale News Hound of Once Upon A Blog, reporting daily FT news since 2009; fairy tale student, enthusiast & researcher since 1980. Teaches kids to love (& create) art. Has put bread on the table via Disney Features, TV & Special Projects animation, visual R&D (film), theater (director, writer, producer), animal rescue work, articles, short stories & one non-fiction book. Also admits to being various characters and a puppeteer of a touring children’s theater company.
Sub-Committee Member – Dr Rebecca-Anne Do Rozario
Dr Rebecca-Anne C. Do Rozario teaches fairy tales, fantasy and children’s literature at Monash University. She has published in a range of scholarly journals and books, writing about topics including Disney princesses, Harry Potter wrock bands, and old women in fairy tales. She also publishes the occasional short story, including a tale about Glinda the Good Witch in Aurealis, and knitting patterns.
Well, that’s the whole team! We’re all excited about the future and look forward to many more fairy-tale adventures ahead.
The Australian Fairy Tale Society