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Senior Lecturer, Creative Writing, University of Wollongong

Shady Cosgrove is a Senior Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Wollongong. She is currently drafting the novel Freefall (working title) set in a dumpster-diving community in Brooklyn, NY. The book follows a single mother who inadvertently brings down capitalism, exploring the question of where we find security: through money or community.

Her previous work includes the novel What the Ground Can't Hold (Picador, 2013) chronicling the lives of nine people trapped in the Andes after an avalanche. Unbeknownst to them, they are all linked by Argentina's Dirty War. The work explores themes of hope, survival and forgiveness. In 2007, Dr Cosgrove's creative non-fiction manuscript She Played Elvis was shortlisted for the Australian Vogel Literary Prize and published by Allen and Unwin in 2009. The memoir documents a pilgrimage across America to Graceland to honour the twenty-fifth anniversary of Elvis Presley's death. Her short fiction has appeared in Southerly, Antipodes, Overland and Best Australian Short Stories.


  • 2009–2015
    Senior Lecturer, University of Wollongong
  • 2012–2014
    Sub Dean, University of Wollongong
  • 2003–2009
    Lecturer, University of Wollongong


  • 2003 
    The Australian National University, Doctor of Philosophy
  • 1996 
    Vassar College, Bachelor of Arts


  • 2013
    What the Ground Can't Hold, Picador, Pan Macmillan
  • 2009
    She Played Elvis, Allen and Unwin