New Book: The Shark Caller


On a day when various media report the findings of Matt Waller that sharks really like ACDC , it seems timely to announce my own good news, that my YA manuscript The Shark Caller has been accepted for publication with Random House in 2016!

The idea for this story began many years ago (Dec 2001), during a family holiday on a dive resort island near Kavieng in Papua New Guinea. My sister, Karen and her partner, Owen worked in PNG and were friends with the owners. I’d been to other PNG islands and The Marovo Lagoon (Solomon Islands) with them. Karen and Owen introduced me to the joy of diving on stunning reefs and WW2 shipwrecks. I loved watching ocean creatures and I also became interested in Pacific Island culture…

The actual Shark Caller story began a few years after that trip, but the draft  went into the ‘revise one day’ drawer. That day didn’t arrive until 2012 when I began my PhD at UWA.

I was fortunate to receive a scholarship for a PhD based on creative writing. I needed to write a linked Creative Work of 70,000 words and a research exegesis on a linked topic (in my case its Anthropomorphism in Australian Children’s Literature). Because I wanted to write for YA readers (around 11-14), I negotiated writing 2 titles for the Creative Works.

Initially these two Creative Works were to be linked dog stories set in WA; one during WW2, the other in the 60s. As my research continued I thought that to show anthropomorphic range it would be really interesting to write from a different species POV and perhaps also in a different genre.

I remembered The Shark Caller, went to the ‘revise one day’ file and have been working on it ever since. Weeks, hours, month and years. The story is semi-fantasy and this genre is totally new to me – and very challenging.

The Shark Caller is due for publication in August 2016. There are many people to thank and they will be acknowledged in the book, including: my UWA supervisors Van Ikin and Tess Williams; my family for reading endless drafts over the past three years and SCBWI WA for inviting Zoe Walton to our Rottnest Retreat and thus enabling me to connect with the wonderful team at Random House.

di in tank

I will post another Shark Caller update early in the New Year…

12 thoughts on “New Book: The Shark Caller

  1. Eric J Kotz

    Spend a lot of time in the South Pacific and have seen the “equipment” used for the “ruse” on the sharks while living in Fiji and the Vava’u Group in Tonga . Have copied it and tried it with some success on small white and black tips in the shallows at Nuku island. Hope you do not disclose the “secret” method as my island friends hope to demonstrate shark calling “when the tourist come”.
    Co- incidentally also have a chapter in my book “The Butchers Son from Tumby Bay” (Ginninderra Press) on the remarkable story of the Tasman flying boat on the bottom of Port Vila Harbour.

    1. Dianne Wolfer Post author

      Hi Eric, thanks for your message and don’t worry, my story was inspired by various aspects of shark cultural practice and my imagination. It is fiction and delves into a fantasy realm. Your friends’ local secrets are totally safe 😉 I’ll look out for your book and read that chapter…

    2. Dianne Wolfer Post author

      Hi Eric, apologies for the very slow reply. I’ve just realised there are comments waiting for me my reply… Thank you so much for the info about the shark ruse in Fiji, Nuku and Tonga. I’d love to see that one day. I will look for your story online about the flying boat. Very best wishes and again, so sorry for the delayed reply!!

  2. Pingback: The Shark Caller – Dianne Wolfer | Just So Stories

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