Catherine Johnson

Children's writer


Catherine Johnson has been writing professionally for close to 20 years. As well as books she writes screenplays for film and TV. She has published 15 books for young readers, all of which have been well received. Most of her books are novels for young adult readers, although she has written some non-fiction for reluctant readers. Arctic Hero, her biography of Mathew Henson, was shortlisted for many awards and selected in 2008 as part of the Booked Up scheme, which distributes free books to Year Seven pupils across England. Her historical novels include Sawbones and A Nest of Vipers, which was chosen by Booktrust in 2009 as one of its best books of the year.

Her film and TV work includes scripting the feature film Bullet Boy, and for the BBC Simon Schama’s Rough Crossings and Holby City. Her radio play for the BBC Fresh Berries was nominated for the Prix Italia. She was selected to take part in the BBC’s Writer’s Academy.

Catherine has worked as a mentor and teacher for many years. She was writer-in-residence in Holloway Prison in 2000–1, and has worked for the British Council mentoring writers in various African countries via email. She has taught writing to adults and teenagers in the UK, Malawi, Albania and Greece, and at universities in the UK.


Catherine Johnson

Children's writer


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  • University of East London, 2011–2012
  • London College of Communication, 2002–2003