Seven Facts 

Eliza Henry - Jones

Eliza Henry - Jones

1.  I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 31, when I was halfway through writing Salt & Skin and working on my PhD. Understanding why I was often extremely anxious, and seemed to tick along at a different rhythm to everyone around me, was a revelation. I’m always happy to chat about ADHD diagnosis, or what it means to be an author with ADHD.

2.  I once inexplicably fractured my ankle walking in very sensible shoes on a flat, manicured lawn. It took me about a month to admit it was sore and get an x-ray.

3.  I am obsessed with flowers and run a micro flower farm in the Yarra Valley with my cousin. Flower farming is the opposite of writing novels in a lot of ways – it’s physical, interpersonal, very sequential, and requires an engagement with the land and with the seasons. It’s also unexpectedly similar, in that it’s frustrating, daunting, and demands a sort of intrinsic optimism. Flowers themselves, when they’re grown seasonally, are also incredibly storied things – speaking of the sun, the rain, the soil and the creatures and other plants around them.

4.  I read everything I can get my hands on – crime, fantasy, horror, experimental, literary, sci-fi, poetry, essays, young adult, romance, memoir and classics.

5.  I am a keen (but not terribly good) hors rider. I first sat on a pony when I was a toddler, and that was it. I currently have four– including a sassy Shetland pony (who escapes her paddock and treats the barn like a self-service buffet). Riding my horses is the only time my ADHD brain feels quiet. I can see their paddock from my office window, which is far too tempting on sunny days when I don’t really feel like staring at my laptop. 

6.  I have qualifications in psychology, as well as grief, loss and trauma counselling. I spent a few years working with extremely vulnerable families in the drug rehabilitation sector. While my studies have directly informed my writing, I’ve always been extremely mindful of never touching the stories of the people I’ve worked with. However, this sort of work does change you, and so irrevocably changes your writing. You begin to perceive the complexity and nuance of things like trauma and addiction in a way you couldn’t before. I think doing this work primes you to see people’s resilience, and their brilliance – even when no one else does.

7.  Teaching myself how to knit involved a lot of swearing, many hours of YouTube videos, and an unspeakable amount of tangled yarn. I now spend my time getting teased a lot for knitting at parties, concerts and horse events.

The Book

Eliza Henry-Jones latest book Salt & Skin is released 6th July - ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1761150529 - ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1761150524

Grief-stricken and on the verge of a breakdown, photographer Luda Managan leaves Australia for a commission, bringing her two teenage children to a remote, weather-ravaged but beautiful Scottish island.

 Luda, isolated from her two resentful teenagers, turns her attention to the records from the 17th century island witch hunts and the fragmented life stories of the executed women. Min, her daughter, restless and strong, tries to fill up the space in their family left by her father. She soon finds comfort in both the sea and an unlikely friendship. But the only thing that beautiful and gifted Darcy cares about is getting marks high enough for entry into university – one very, very far away from his mother. Until he meets the wild foundling, Theo, who slowly self-destructing in a community that is both protective and violent towards him.

But when a tragic accident unleashes ghosts and the echoes of long-ago violence and betrayal into their lives, the Managans must confront their unspoken histories in order to survive.

 Luminously-written, Salt & Skin is a compelling modern family drama, threaded with folklore and building to an incredible, climactic ending. It’s a story of wild landscapes, incomers, outsiders and changelings, and a meditation on the absence of women’s voices in stories and history.

And like a hymn to the sea, it is unpredictable, startling and beautiful.


Eliza Henry-Jones is a writer and academic based on a little flower farm in Victoria, Australia. Her previous novels have been listed for multiple literary awards including the ABIA, NSW Premier’s Literary Awards and QLD Literary Awards. Her work has also been published widely, appearing in places such as the Guardian, Country Style, The Big Issue and The Age. Eliza has qualifications in psychology as well as grief, loss and trauma counselling. @elizahenryjones


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