Mykaela Saunders

Performing The River’s Children by SJ Norman. Abbotsford Convent, Melbourne, March 2019. Photo by Clare Rae.


Doctor of Arts (creative writing). Goori-futurism: stories of sovereignty and survivance, from Bundjalung country, community, and culture, University of Sydney, 2017-2021

Master of Education (research). Yarning with Minjungbal Women: testimonial narratives of transgenerational trauma and healing explored through relationships with country and culture, community and family, University of Sydney, 2012-2014

Bachelor of Education (secondary). Aboriginal Studies, Ancient History, and Modern History, Koori Centre, University of Sydney, 2008-2009

Diploma of Aboriginal Education. Koori Centre, University of Sydney, 2006-2007


Recipient. Creative Victoria VicArts Grant, 2020

Recipient. Varuna Copyright Agency First Nations Fellowship, 2020

Shortlist. Liminal Fiction Prize (inaugural), 2019

Recipient. Grace Marion Wilson Glenfern Fellowship, 2019

Winner. Grace Marion Wilson Emerging Writers Competition, creative non-fiction, 2019

Shortlist. Peter Carey Short Story Award, 2019

Recipient. Sister Alison Bush Medal for Indigenous achievement, University of Sydney, 2016

Teaching, research & support

Guest lecturer. ‘Carpentaria’, ‘Indigenous Futurisms’ & ‘Indigenous Cli-Fi’, ENGL10004 Indigenous Literature, University of Melbourne, 2020

Research. Best practise recovery program for Indigenous family and domestic violence, Wollumbin Family Support Inc, 2019-2020

Course co-ordinator & lecturer. INDG1001 Introduction to Indigenous Cultures, Winter school program, University of Sydney, 2017-present

Lecturer & ITAS tutor. CUL00401 Indigenous World-views & HEA10200 Trans- and Intergenerational Trauma, and various Indigenous Studies, Trauma and Resilience & Education subjects, Gnibi College of Indigenous Australian Peoples, Southern Cross University, 2015-2019

Casual lecturer & tutor. KOCR2600 Introduction to Indigenous Australia, KOCR2602 Issues in Indigenous Rights, EDUP2006 Indigenous Australian Education & EDSE2002 Indigenous Education: Secondary Schools, University of Sydney, 2012-2014

Rural area relief & casual teacher. Toomelah Primary School, Boggabilla Central School, Tweed River High School, and various secondary & primary schools in London, England, 2009-2011

Disability support worker. On Track Community Programs, Tweed Heads, 2007-2009

Indigenous teacher’s aide & classroom support. Tweed River High School, 2003-2007

Performance & collaboration

Washing & water drawing. The River’s Children by SJ Norman, Temporal Proximities at Abbotsford Convent, Melbourne, 2019

Taking blood & giving medicines. Cicatrix 1 (that which is taken/that which remains) by SJ Norman (world premiere), First Nations Dialogues at Performance Space, New York City, 2019

Embracing bodies. Rest Area by SJ Norman, LiveWorks Festival at Carriageworks, Sydney, 2018

Incantations. Stone Tape Theory by SJ Norman, Festival of Live Art at Arts House, Melbourne, 2018

Critical interlocuter. Codex Exstasis by SJ Norman, residency at Arts House, Melbourne, 2018

Panels & talks

Public lecture. Writing & Concepts: Lecture Series, Linden New Art, St Kilda (upcoming, September 2020)

Panel discussion. World-Building 101 with Catherine McKinnon and Mitchell Hogan, moderated by Keith Stevenson, Writing NSW Speculative Fiction Festival, Sydney, 2019

Conference presentation. Goori-futurism, Science Fiction Research Association annual conference, Honolulu, 2019

Conference presentation. Koori-Futurism, Mana Yura Postgraduate Symposium, University of Sydney, 2018

Panel discussion. Decolonising Practice – responsibility reinvented (part 1) with Ishmael Houston-Jones, Anastasia Kanjere, SJ Norman, and Laurie Uprichard, moderated by Laniyuk Garcon-Mills, Melbourne, 2018

Judging panel. Multicultural and Indigenous Media Awards, NSW Parliament House, Sydney, 2014

Television forum. Awaken Episode 22 Identity with Rosalie Kunoth Monks, Linda Burney, Mark McMillan, Jimblah, and Anthony Dillon, hosted by Stan Grant, SBS NITV, Sydney Opera House, 2014

Judging panel. National Indigenous Human Rights Awards (inaugural), NSW Parliament House, Sydney, 2014

© Mykaela Saunders, 2020