Nicole Hayes is an award-winning writer and podcaster, and a popular writing teacher. Her second novel, ONE TRUE THING was the winner of the Children’s Peace Literature Award and was shortlisted for the WA Premier’s Literary Award, the WA Young Readers Award, and YABBA and KOALA awards. A SHADOW’S BREATH was a finalist in the NSW Premier’s Award, the Gold INKY Awards and is a CBCA Notable book. Her debut novel, THE WHOLE OF MY WORLD, a YA #MeToo story set in the world of AFL, was longlisted for the Gold Inky Award, and shortlisted for the YABBA and KOALA awards. Most recently, she co-authored an AFL junior fiction series with Adrian Beck called LITTLE LEGENDS. The series includes a standalone edition, LITTLE LEGENDS: THE MISSING CUP which was commissioned for the 2021 Australia Reads campaign.
Nicole co-edited an anthology of writing, FROM THE OUTER: FOOTY LIKE YOU’VE NEVER HEARD IT (Black Inc), with Alicia Sometimes, which was the impetus for the development of the groundbreaking all-female Australian football podcast and radio show, THE OUTER SANCTUM. The Outer Sanctum was pivotal in breaking the Caroline Wilson / Eddie McGuire controversy in 2016, and after partnering with The Age for the inaugural women’s AFL competition, was then featured at the ABC on Grandstand radio and Melbourne Radio. The Outer Sanctum won an Australian Football Media Award for coverage of the AFLW, and a SportsAustralia award in recognition of their coverage of inclusive sport. Nicole and Alicia also collaborated on a football book for younger readers about the inaugural women’s AFL competition, A Footy Girl’s Guide to the Stars of 2017 (Black Inc, February 2017).
In recent years, she has written a regular AFLW column for The Guardian (Australia), and feature articles for The Saturday Paper, The Griffith Review, Writers Victoria, NSW Write, Mamamia, The Wheeler Centre online, and has written chapters/essays for #MeToo: Stories of the Australian Movement (Pan MacMillan), Balancing Acts: Women in Sport (The Lifted Brow); Speccy-tacular AFL Stories (Puffin); and From the Outer: Footy like you’ve never heard it (Black Inc).
Nicole runs writing workshops for a range of organisations and educational institutes around Australia, including Australian Writers’ Centre, Writers Victoria, and Deakin University, where she is currently undertaking a PhD. Nicole regularly speaks about writing, sport, politics and gender, has a Master of Arts in Creative Writing, a BA in Politics and Media Studies, and is an ambassador for the Stella Prize in Schools program and Australia Reads.