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About Margaret River Press

More than anything, Margaret River Press offers an engaging, approachable alternative to mass publication, selecting those titles that speak to us, and bringing them to you, the reader.


Margaret River Press operates both in Margaret River and at the Centre for Stories in Perth, Western Australia. Its small team of staff, editorial members and ever growing interns, love the feeling that comes from publishing not in pursuit of profit, but in a sense of curiosity about people, places, and the stories they hold.

Margaret River Press is a press that's strongly committed to nurturing and supporting writers at all stages of their career by:

  • Supporting their development through online and face-to-face promotion, networking, and community building around literature and the short story
  • Featuring them in our annual short story anthology
  • Publishing their work after a rigorous, consultative editorial process.
Caroline Wood, Publisher and Director

Caroline has a double degree in Art History and Psychology from Oxford Brookes University and has worked in Singapore, the United Kingdom and Australia.  She has held senior management positions in the private sector and universities.  She served as a Board member of Amnesty International (Australia), Augusta Margaret River Tourism Association and Small Publishers Network and was Chair of the Margaret River Readers and Writers Festival Advisory Committee. She is one of the founding members of the Australian Short Story Festival and has an an unwavering commitment to supporting new and emerging writers and to the Australian literary landscape.

John Wood, Publisher and Director

John has a degree in Economics from The University of Western Australia and a Doctorate in Economics from Oxford University. He has held various professional positions in the public and private sector that included Speech Writer in the Office of the Prime Minister, Chief Economist and Strategist with Ernst & Young and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Edith Cowan University.  He is currently the Executive General Manager (University Programs) at Navitas. He has served as a Director on the Board of HBF for eleven years and is a life member of the Oxford Business Alumni. John has authored two books and edited 115 volumes on great economists. A fanatical fisherman and keen swimmer, John loves the rugged South West coast and its unique ridgelines.

Editorial Board

Susan Midalia is a former academic who is now a full-time fiction writer. She has published two collections of short stories: A History of the Beanbag (2007), shortlisted for the Western Australian Premier's Book Award, and An Unknown Sky (2012). She was one of the judges of the 2012 T.A.G. Hungerford Award for an unpublished fiction or creative non-fiction manuscript.  Her latest collection, Feet to the Stars and other stories (2015) was shortlisted for the 2016 WA Premier's Book Awards and Susan's novel The Art of Persuasion has recently been published by Fremantle Press.

Camha Pham is a freelance editor with a background in educational publishing, and has worked across a broad range of materials including book manuscripts, educational resources and online publications. She was formerly a Development Editor at Oxford University Press, Melbourne, where she worked on the health and social work new editions lists, and has also completed a Master of Publishing and Editing from Monash University.

Richard Rossiter is an experienced academic, editor and writer.  He is an Honorary Associate Professor at Edith Cowan University.  His  book length publication Arrhythmia: Stories of Desire was published by UWA Press in 2009.  He is the Editor of three collections of short stories compiled from entries to the annual Margaret River Short Story Competition. His novella, Thicker than Water  was published by UWA Press in 2014.

Josephine Taylor is a writer and freelance editor, an Adjunct Lecturer in the School of Arts and Humanities at Edith Cowan University, and an Editorial Board member of Margaret River Press. Her work has been anthologised, and has appeared in diverse publications, including Axon, Outskirts and Westerly. She is also a regular contributor to Australian Book Review. Josephine is interested in persistent pain states, especially chronic gynaecological pain, and passionate about the workings of creativity in response to physical and psychological disorder. She presents and facilitates in the areas of Australian literature, and writing/creativity and wellbeing. Her PhD thesis, Vulvodynia and Autoethnography (2011), was awarded the ECU Faculty Research Medal (2011) and the Magdalena Prize in Feminist Research (2012).

Although only established in 2011, Margaret River Press emerged from Helm Wood Publishers, which had its own historical connection to Croom Helm Publishers of London.

Prior to being sold to A and C Black, Croom Helm was owned and operated by Mr. Christopher Helm. Born in Dundee in 1937, Mr. Helm was educated at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge and subsequently worked for Macmillan. Following his time at Macmillan, Mr. Helm founded his own publishing firms and began to specialise in academic and ornithological titles. These included the widely respected taxonomic and geographic bird books known as the Helm Identification Guides.

In 1983, Croom Helm published ‘British Economists and the Empire’ by John Cunningham Wood. This book was the first collaboration between Mr. Helm and Dr. Wood and was the beginning of a lasting relationship. They went on to found Helm Wood Publishers and together published specialist social, political and environmental works in both the United Kingdom and Australia.

In 1995 Mr. Helm was elected Vice President of the British Ornithological Union and Dr. Wood edited the inaugural Wood’s Parliamentary Companion. This was a year of great success for both men, and as their other professional activities flourished, they allowed the vision for Helm Wood to languish. In 2007 and having not published any work of note for a number of years, Dr. Wood and Caroline Wood acquired all shares in Helm Wood which became wholly Australian owned.

In 2006 John Wood registered the business name Margaret River Press as the second imprint of Helm Wood Publishers, the first being Helm Wood. In 2011, Dr. Wood’s wife Caroline Wood decided to activate the publishing business and started operating under the name of Margaret River Press because of the couple's love for the region, where since 1991 they have had a second home and where their three children have lots of wonderful childhood memories.

Drawing on its predecessors’ tradition of social, political and environmental works, Margaret River Press is committed to its region and the written word.

The logo of Margaret River Press is the white-bellied frog (Geocrinia alba). We chose this frog to represent MRP because they are a local indicator species, whose health reflects the health of the ecosystem as a whole. The white-bellied frog is critically endangered but it has a resilient stronghold in the area immediately south of the Margaret River townsite. Our frog is a symbol of strength and beauty that resonates with its place and knows that with awareness its future is far brighter.

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