Biographical Note


Rhyll McMasterRhyll McMaster has worked as a secretary, a burns unit nurse and a sheep farmer. Her poems have been appearing in Australian publications since she was sixteen. They have been broadcast on national radio and television, and she has staged her poetry in a performance piece with a rock singer and a four-piece band. Her radio play, On My Empty Feet, was broadcast twice by the ABC.

She has been poetry editor of The Canberra Times, a reviewer for the Australian Book ReviewThe Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian, a manuscripts assessor for the National Book Council, and a film scripts assessor for the Film Finance Corporation.

She has been a chairperson and judge of the NSW Premier's Literary Awards and fellowships, and a panel chair at the Sydney Writer's Festival.


She has seven poetry books to her credit, and her latest book of poems is Late Night Shopping, Brandl & Schlesinger, 2012. It has been shortlisted for The Age Book of the Year Poetry Prize and the Judith Wright Calanthe Poetry Prize, Queensland Literary Awards, 2012.

A large selection of her work is included in the seminal poetry anthology Australian Poetry Since 1788, Lehmann & Gray eds., UNSW Press, 2011.

Her poems are included in the Best Australian Poems 2010, 2011 and 2012.


Her first novel, Feather Man, set in Brisbane and London was published in Australia in 2007 by Brandl & Schlesinger to excellent reviews. It won two major awards and was shortlisted for two others. She has been a guest of the major Australian literary festivals, and has conducted seminars on her novel at Sydney University.

Feather Man is in its second edition and is published as an Audio book. It was listed as a 'Favourite Australian Novel' in a reader poll, ABR Magazine, 2010. Rhyll has been featured in an ABC TV segment, The Writer's Room in 2012.

Feather Man was published in the UK, USA and Canada in 2008 by Marion Boyars. It was favorably reviewed in The New Statesman and was recommended as Pick of the Week in The Boston Globe. Feather Man was chosen for special promotion through the Literary Ventures Fund, and promoted in independent bookshops by the American Booksellers’ Association, both as a Choice of the Month and for their Highlights list.

Feather Man was discussed as Book of the Month on the online Barnes & Noble Book Explorers Club. Rhyll was a guest of the Southwold Literature Festival in the UK. She was interviewed on PRI’s The World radio program which is hosted by Lisa Mullins and broadcast across America.

AWARDS:  Feather Man

2008 Winner of the inaugural Barbara Jefferis Award
2008 Winner of the UTS Glenda Adams Prize, NSW Premier’s Awards
2008 Shortlisted for the Australian Literature Society’s Gold Medal
2008 Longlisted for the World Book Day (UK) Spread the Word Prize
2007 Shortlisted for the Victorian Premier’s Award

AWARDS:  Poetry

Harri Jones Memorial Award for The Brineshrimp
C.J. Dennis Prize, Victorian Premier’s Award for Washing the Money
Grace Leven Prize for Washing the Money
Grace Leven Prize for Flying the Coop
Shortlisted for The Age Book of the Year Poetry Prize and the Judith Wright Calanthe Poetry Prize, QLA, 2012 for Late Night Shopping



The Brineshrimp (UQP, 1972) ISBN 0702207632

Washing the Money: Poems with photographs
(Angus & Robertson, 1986) ISBN 0207152810

On My Empty Feet (Wm. Heinemann, 1993) ISBN 0855615222

Flying the Coop: New and selected poems
(Wm. Heinemann, 1994) ISBN 085561627X

Chemical Bodies: A diary of probable events, 1994-1997
(Brandl & Schlesinger, 1997) ISBN 187604005X

Evolutionary History of Edward Kelly in Primary Colours:
a limited edition of 50, Edition and Artist Book Studio, ANU
(Cultural Facilities Corporation, 1999)

The Elegant Rabbit and other poems (Wagtail - 19, Picaro Press, March 2003) ISSN 14444-8424

Washing the Money (The Art Box Series, Picaro Press, 2008) ISBN 978-920957-68-1

Late Night Shopping, (Brandl & Schlesinger, 2012) ISBN 978-1-921556-30-2


Feather Man (Brandl & Schlesinger, 2007) ISBN 9781876040833

Feather Man (Marion Boyars, 2008) ISBN 0714531480

Anhui Literature & Art Publishing House, China, 2011
Dnipro Magazine, Ukraine, 2011