Michael Gerard Bauer writes...
'I was born in Brisbane and attended the University of Queensland where I enjoyed the social life while making brief appearances in a variety of courses including Commerce/Law and Social Work before finally making it through an Arts degree with a double major in English Literature'.
‘When it became clear that I was unlikely to be the next Bob Dylan I enrolled in a Diploma of Education and became a teacher'.
‘Since then I have taught English and Economics in a number of secondary schools in the Brisbane–Ipswich area, which for me has been the best of times and the worst of times — but mainly the best. From 2000 I managed regular breaks from teaching in order to pursue my writing dreams, thanks mainly to the generosity of my wife Adriana (also a teacher). Today I am amazed to find myself a full - time writer'.
‘I have always been interested in writing and over the years have dabbled in song lyrics, short stories and poetry with no real thought of ever being published. For quite a few years I kept diaries where I would write about my experiences and innermost feelings in verse heavily disguised by symbols and images. Looking back I think this was probably a good way of developing and improving writing skills without realising it'.
‘Together with my wife and children Meg and Joe I live in the beautiful Brisbane suburb of Ashgrove. It is the suburb in which I grew up, went to school, spent a number of years teaching, met my wife and where, a few streets away from our present home, in what was once a private hospital, I was born. People tell me I should get out more'.
Michael Gerard Bauer won the 2003 Brisbane Writers Festival WriteSmall Competition.
His first novel The Running Man, published in 2004, received immediate acclaim, winning the 2005 Children's Book Council of Australia Book of the Year for Older Readers.
The novel tells the story of Joseph, a 14-year - old boy who is asked by his neighbour Caroline Leighton to draw a portrait of Tom, her reclusive and brooding brother. However, Joseph soon realises that in order for his portrait to be true, he must find the courage to unlock the dark and perhaps dangerous secrets hidden deep within Tom Leighton's cocoon of silence. As he moves closer to the heart of his neighbour's despair, Joseph finds he must confront his own childhood nightmares as well as the pain of his damaged relationship with his absent father. Like the silkworms that dominate Tom Leighton's world, he and Joseph undergo changes as they experience both the frailty and tenacity of the human spirit.
Don't Call Me Ishmael! (published in April 2006).
A comedy set in a boys' school where Ishmael and his intrepid band of grade nine misfits take on bullies, bugs, babes, the Beatles, debating and the great white whale in the toughest, the weirdest, the most embarrassingly awful … and the best year of their lives.
- Selected for inclusion in The White Ravens 2007
- Chosen for the Junior Library Guild of America's premiere section for their Fall 2007
Ishmael and the Return of the Dugongs (published in September 2007). Sequel to Don't Call Me Ishmael!
Michael's books are now published in the USA and Europe.