Currently Chris is working on her second adult historical novel, this one set in France in the aftermath of the Great War. One of the most exciting aspects of this project, and being an historical fiction author, is the research. The idea for this new novel germinated with a question Chris asked during a tour of a cemetery on the Somme battlefields while researching The Swing Tree. Revealing that question would give away the premise of the novel too early. For now, she is much excited about her developing story world and an intended return to France to research local archival material, walk the ground of her setting, and explore French attitudes of the day towards both the fictional and one of the real life characters in her story. She is not complaining that the trip will entail time spent in Paris too. Strictly for research, of course.
Chris Bell has written 35 published short fiction books for children, including picture story, chapter and YA. Her junior eco novel manuscript Strange Creatures received a Highly Commended in the 2016 CYA Writing and Illustrating Competition – published author prize. In 2014 Chris was awarded a Varuna Retreat Fellowship to work on Prison Boy – a YA historical novel set in convict Van Diemen’s Land. Chris’s contemporary YA novel Jumping Through Hoops won the 2011 CYA Writing and Illustrating Competition – published author prize and was long-listed in the international 2012 Mslexia Writing for Children Competition. Her adult short stories have been published in anthologies and shortlisted in competitions. Chris holds a Master of Creative Writing and a Diploma of Arts – Professional Writing and Editing. She served as the Assistant Coordinator of SCBWI Vic (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) for five years from 2014 – 2018 and as a CYA Writing and Illustrating Competition judge through 2014/15/16/17.
MEMBER: Writers Victoria | Australian Society of Authors (ASA) | Historical Novel Society | Historical Novel Society Australasia (HNSA) | Varuna Alumni | Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI) | CBCA | Young & Jackson Writing Group | LLLCD Writers’ Group.