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Katherine Howell is 'frantic'


Brigid Veale
30 April 2007
Tweed Heads author and Southern Cross University graduate Katherine Howell is ‘frantic’.

She’s about to launch her first published novel –a crime thriller of that name – and is just weeks off delivering the second book she has been contracted to write for leading Australian publisher Pan Macmillan.

Described recently by a reviewer as ‘a fresh new Australian voice in crime writing’, Katherine graduated from the Tweed Gold Coast campus with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2001.

She wrote most of ‘Frantic’ while working full-time as an ambulance officer in the Tweed region, drawing heavily on her personal experiences to create crime-solving paramedic Sophie Phillips, the book’s central character.

“I’m hoping that many of my university friends and ambulance and hospital colleagues will join me to celebrate the launch; it’s a book very much borne of this region,” said Katherine.

“Completing my Bachelor of Arts degree and subsequently a Masters in Philosophy was crucial to the development of my writing because it brought me into contact with people who valued writing and reading as much as I did, and instructors who gave me deadlines, feedback and encouragement. I wrote four novels in 15 years before 'Frantic' was accepted, but my teachers always made me feel that it (publication) was possible.”

Southern Cross University senior lecturer in writing, Dr Janie Conway-Herron, said Katherine’s writing ability was apparent even as an undergraduate student.

“In this highly competitive industry, locking into a contract with guaranteed global sales is a wonderful achievement; Katherine is to be applauded,” Dr Conway-Heron said.

“I was always confident she would have a bright future and while she’s not famous yet she’s about to be.”

After its Australian launch – at Café La Cuccina at Tweed Heads on May 5 at 4pm – 'Frantic'
will go on sale in France, Germany, Italy, Russia and the UK, by which time Katherine expects to have released the second book in her series, 'Panic'.

Photo: Tweed Heads ambulance officer and Southern Cross University graduate, Katherine Howell, is about to launch her first novel. Photo by Cal Mackinnon.