Jennifer Compton was born in New Zealand in 1949, and emigrated to Australia in 1972 with her husband, Matthew O’Sullivan. They now live in the bayside suburb of Carrum in Melbourne, close to their daughter and grandson. Their son lives in Sydney. Jennifer is a poet and playwright who also writes prose. She has recently realised that she is running out of time to write for film and may never get around to it. But her essays, short stories and memoirs have appeared in many publications and been broadcast on radio, and ‘The Magic Teaspoon’ was published in The Best Australian Essays 2012. Her stage play, Crossfire, jointly won the Newcastle Playwriting Competition in 1974, premiered at the Nimrod Theatre in 1975, and was published by Currency Press. The Big Picture is her most recently produced work for the theatre, and it premiered at the Griffin Theatre in 1998, and was also published by Currency Press.
When it comes to the poetry side of things, Barefoot (Picaro Press) was shortlisted for the John Bray Poetry Award at the Adelaide Festival, and This City won the Kathleen Grattan Award in New Zealand and was published by Otago University Press in 2011. In 2013 her poem ‘Now You Shall Know’ won the Newcastle Poetry Prize and was published in the eponymous anthology. Her verse novella Mr Clean and the Junkie is forthcoming from Makaro Press in New Zealand in 2015, and she is developing a stage play called The Death of Books.