‘We live in vast natural landscapes, and can drive for days where no people reside but where plants, animals, birds, insects, hills and rocks live. We sleep under a sky full of stars and embrace the wild storms and cyclones that come upon us at times.’ Diane Lucas
Diane lives in the Northern Territory (NT), far from the maddening crowd of southern Australia and came to the NT to live in Kakadu in 1983. She ran a small school in Kakadu on an outstation for an Indigenous community.
She feels her life and learning took a new direction from that time. She learned about tshe land and the interconnected relationship between plants, animals, winds and seasonality and how to collect and prepare bush foods.
Since that time she has mostly lived in northern Australia. Her work life has been varied and interesting, mostly in Educational, Environmental, Ethno-ecological and Arts projects. Some of her work has taken her to South-East Asia and South America.
The work she has partaken in and having her own children has inspired and influenced her to write stories for children. She has 4 published books and a 5th, ‘Wan’kurra the Golden Bandicoot’ was released in November 2012 (see review by Deborah Dank).
In 2003, Diane authored the children’s educational picture book, ‘Walking with the Seasons in Kakadu’, illustrated by Ken Searle, published by Allen and Unwin.
It was short listed for the ‘Excellence in Educational Publishing’ in 2004. This book continues to be printed and is sold as a trade book so is available in any bookshop. It has also been made into a‘Children’s Talking Book’.
It has been recognised as a highly recommended book for the ‘Values Education Program’ and islisted in the National Australian Curriculum as a reference for Indigenous Studies.
Diane assisted with the compilation of ‘Territory Treasures’, an anthology of writing for children from NT in 2005 and another anthology, ‘Whatever!’ published in 2007. Included in each of these anthologies are a selection of her stories, poems and songs.
In 2006 she released a cd of seasonal songs for children, ‘Singing with the Seasons’. Songs from this cd have been selected by the ABC for publication in their ‘Sing’ book for 2009. (Download PDF describing Singing with the Seasons)
Late 2007 she authored the children’s picture book, ‘Waterlilies’, illustrated by Colwyn Campbell. This continues to sell well and was recognised as a Notable book in the CBC awards, in the Eve Powell section for 2008. (Download PDF describing Waterlilies)
In 2009 she authored, ‘Brumbies in the Night’, illustrated by Colwyn Campbell. This is a Children’s picture book and has also been made into a ‘Talking book CD’ for Children.
In 2011 she authored the Children’s picture book, ‘Spines in the Sand’, Illustrated by Colwyn Campbell.
All of the above books have now been listed on the National Australian Curriculum recommended readings for Indigenous Studies.
Since 2004 Diane has been part of the NT Writers Literary Festival and assisted in co-ordinating the Children’s story-telling part of this festival. This festival is known as ‘Wordstorm’ in Darwin. Diane gives story-telling workshops in schools to inspire the writing of songs, stories, verse & theatre. She also organises ‘Walks with Nature’, for Children and Adult groups.
Author Contact Details Email Diane Lucas
‘Over the years, since arriving in the Northern Territory in 1983, many experiences, observations and learnings including botanical and ecological fieldwork, have given me the inspiration to write stories, songs, poems and plays. I feel very fortunate to have led such an interesting life this far with many interesting projects offered each year that all bring new skills and experiences.’
‘I hope in my life-time that the world can find more peace and ways to work with the earth instead of robbing all its natural resources for human benefit.
This probably means we all need to show more tolerance of each other and recognise that we need to work together to keep this planet with some Biodiversity, by using less carbon resources. We need to assist people in developing countries to find places to live as their homes and fertile lands are affected by the contribution that western countries make to the changing climate. Presently there is still too much emphasis on economically driven economies with not enough thought given to the effect on Indigenous communites around the world, whose lives impact much less on the environment. And we need to give thought and protection to other species who were also born to co-habit this planet with human beings.’
‘Wan’kurra the Golden Bandicoot’, about an endangered species in Australia, November, 2012.
‘Spines in the Sand’, written by Diane Lucas Illustrated by Colwyn Campbell, 2011. Download PDF
‘Waterlilies’,written by Diane Lucas illustrated by Colwyn Campbell, 2007
‘Walking with the Seasons in Kakadu’, written by Diane Lucas illustrated by Ken Searle, published by Allen and Unwin. 2003. Download PDF
Diane assisted with the compilation of ‘Territory Treasures’, an anthology of writing for children from NT in 2005 and another anthology, ‘Whatever!’ published in 2007.
Cd of seasonal songs for children, ‘Singing with the Seasons’ (2006) Songs from this cd have been selected by the ABC for publication in their ‘Sing’ book for 2009.
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