Biography

I was born in a little Upper Hunter country town on a very cold winter’s morning in 1974. Looking at my childhood photos from the mid 1970’s, I cringe at what my mum dressed me in, all that brown is just not right!

Katrina McKelveyGrowing up in a country town was great fun. My sister and I rode bikes, climbed trees, swam in creeks, and generally enjoyed being outside. I still can’t believe we survived on one TV in our house with only two channels.

I was a reluctant reader as a child. I even read the study guides instead of the books during my HSC. I don’t know how I completed my childhood without being flooded with books. My children are now drowning in them!

During high school I worked in my parents’ corner store and as a checkout supervisor in a large supermarket. I loved school, counting money and talking to people.

Katrina McKelveyI went to the University of Newcastle in the early 1990’s and studied Primary School Teaching. While studying, I worked as a vacation care worker, a waitress, and a jewellery salesperson (my favourite).

I was a primary school teacher for 10 years in Newcastle and on the Central Coast. I always knew I wanted to be a teacher (since preschool). I enjoyed every day and loved every child I had the privilege of teaching. Teaching was exactly like I thought it would be…so rewarding!

Katrina McKelveyIn 2005, it was time to be a mummy, a full-time one! Soaking up every single milestone of my two children in their early years was a blessing. After being a full-time mummy for 5 years, I decided to mix my love of teaching with my love of being a mum. A new children’s author was born!

I love children, roses, lavender, drinking tea, chocolate, shopping, and picture books.

I dislike mandarines, spelling, snakes, dirt, seafood, being tired, and bad drivers.

My favourite authors include: Dr Seuss, Andy Griffiths, Jacqueline Harvey, Gus Gordon, Nick Bland, Margaret Wild, Jackie French, Frances Watts, Libby Gleeson, Stephen Michael King and Margaret Mahy.

My favourite illustrators include: Freya Blackwood, Leila Rudge, Stephen Michael King, Bob Graham, Polly Dunbar, Aaron Blabey, Bruce Whately, Anna Walker and Terry Denton.

Ten interesting things about me:

  1. Katrina McKelveyI was raised in a horse crazy country town. Everyone there loves horses…except for me. When I was about 7 years old a horse bit me badly on my leg while I was patting him over the school fence. I have feared them ever since.
  2. To earn pocket money my sister and I used to pick hundreds of bunches of Freesias from our grandmother’s garden and sell them for $1 in our parents’ corner store. We made a fortune! I just love the smell of them and I now grow them in my garden and keep them all for myself.
  3. When I was about 12 years old, a hot air balloon accidently landed in our backyard.
  4. I was given a car for my 18th birthday and crashed it during my HSC two weeks later. I got in a lot of trouble even though the accident wasn’t my fault.
  5. I put my milk in my tea before the boiling water. I think it tastes more like caramel that way.
  6. I am a Sudoku champion…if I do say so myself.
  7. I am left-handed, and I am proud of it!
  8. All of my friends got head lice growing up except for me. I thought I was lucky until I got my first infestation when I was teaching Year 4. I was 29 years old. How embarrassing!
  9. I love symmetry and I hate odd numbers.
  10. I love reading and writing stories about farts, underpants, poo, snot and other disgusting things that make children laugh. My favourite picture books include ‘Who Flung Dung?’ by Ben Redlich, ‘The Story of the Little Mole who knew it was None of his Business’ by Werner Holzwarth and Wolf Erlbruch, and ‘Baa Baa Smart Sheep’ by Mark and Rowan Sommerset.

Dr Seuss Quote