Mem Fox

Awarded Author, Academic & Keynote Speaker

Mem Fox knows the importance of the first five years of life and there is nothing that she enjoys more than watching the joy on children’s faces as she fills their hearts and imaginations with her stories.

One of Australia’s most loved writers of children’s fiction, Mem has written over 40 books for children and several non-fiction books for grown-ups, including her renowned book for parents Reading Magic. Many of her stories for children have a subtle focus on equality, tolerance and respect.

A passionate advocate for literacy, Mem speaks extensively on the subject in the most engaging way, reading her stories aloud to captivated audiences and demonstrate the way in which literacy can inspire and educate.

Mem is also immensely popular as a speaker for corporate, community and Association events. Her personal story of literary success in spite of rejection, her drive to constantly search out new ideas and her impressive ability to think at a highly creative level are all talents that can easily be translated into the wider world of business, politics and community

More about Mem Fox:

Mem Fox was born in Melbourne and grew up in Africa. She went to drama school in England, and came back to Australia in 1970, aged 22. She claims that growing up outside the country and returning at 22 gave her a unique perspective on Australia, and a passionate love for it.

In 1983 Mem became Australia’s best-selling writer. She has remained a preeminent writer for children for an entire generation. Possum Magic, her first book, is still available in hardback after more than 30 years and has become a beacon in children’s literature for millions of Australian families.

Mem Fox is a retired Associate Professor of Literacy Studies from Flinders University, South Australia, where she taught teachers for 24 years until 1996. Her focus on literacy is legendary: how it is best learnt by reading to children for the first five years of their lives; the effect of literacy, or the lack of it, on the individual child; and its enormous benefits for the economy of the country.

Mem has written over 40 books for children, many of which have become international best-sellers including Time for Bed, Where Is the Green Sheep? and Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes, a copy of which was Australia’s official gift to Prince George, the royal baby. Mem has also written several non-fiction books for adults, including her renowned book for parents: Reading Magic. Her books have been translated into over twenty languages. Mem’s book: I’m Australian Too, takes her back to where she started: her passion for Australia. In writing it, her hope was to spark spirited discussions about Australian-ness, create an awareness of Australian immigration over the centuries, and begin to calm the rising racism in this country.

Mem Fox has received many civic honours and awards, and three honorary doctorates.

She lives by the beach in Adelaide, South Australia, but travels a lot, wearing her academic speaking hat, advocating for literacy and the best ways to achieve it.

Mem Fox talks about:

Mem brings drama and creativity, warmth and compassion and most importantly, a contagious joy for life, literacy and creativity to all her keynote presentations.

Her speaking topics include:

  • What makes a writer, and then what makes a writer successful? These are two very different things.
  • How did I come to be who I am, when my first book Possum Magic was rejected five times over nine years?
  • Is it networking, luck, or one’s actual work-and-product that breeds success?
  • Why reading to our children will change their lives forever.
  • Why successful writers are always readers first.
  • Where the heck do all those ideas come from?
  • Is your child’s school killing an interest in reading by the way reading is taught?

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