LeanneEllul

1.

Biography

Leanne Ellul initially began writing poetry before turning to fiction for children and young adults. She has also written plays, one of which was the recipient of the Francis Ebejer prize.

Jump to bibliography

When writing for a young adult audience, Ellul is fascinated by and attempts to explore sensitive topics, such as terminal illnesses and psychological disorders. For example, the protagonist of Gramma (Gram, Merlin Publishers, 2015), her first novel, suffers from an eating disorder. Her forthcoming novel centres on self-harm. Ellul’s treatment of these topics is subtle and injected with humour and wordplay – especially through the use of punning. Through such stylistic devices, she avoids the clichés that tend to infiltrate this genre, not least the fact that the treatment of young adult problems is practically a foregone conclusion in fiction intended for this readership. While she resists the idea of literature as a tool to moralise or teach, she is nevertheless conscious of the indirect role that literature can play in raising awareness. Her work is partly intended to address the lacuna in Maltese literature on certain topics. Through her stylistic inventiveness, Ellul’s treatment of disturbing topics becomes an exploration of the fragility and vulnerability of human relationships.

In contrast to her writings for young readers, which temper the seriousness of the subject matter with humour, Ellul’s writing for adults is rooted in painful events relating to family, love, loss and the sea. On the one hand, there is Nanna Girasola’s lightheartedness, inventiveness and love of music in the children’s book L-Istorja ta’ Seb it-Tieni (u ta’ Seb l-Ewwel ukoll) (The Story of Seb the Second (and of Seb the First as well), Merlin Publishers, 2019). On the other, there is the portrayal of the loss of her own grandmother, receding in a wail of ambulance sirens in her poetry collection L-Inventarju tal-Kamra l-Kaħla (The Blue Room Inventory, Merlin Publishers, 2020). And yet, no matter who her intended readers are, Ellul’s characters take on a life of their own and are always endowed with an element of playfulness, both in the way they are described and also in the way they speak. What is left unsaid, the spaces between words, matters as much as what is written.

Ellul treats writing as an instrument that opens up a space for her to explore current themes and discourses. She describes her writing process as a series of editorial cycles. A disciplined writer; her editing process forces her to engage with the minutiae of language, which she approaches as raw material for her to mould. There is a liberating sense of exploration in Ellul’s work, and this marks her writing and identity as an author.

Biography written by Stephanie Xerri Agius

2.

Bibliography

Bjuda

Poetry
Maltese
English
Author
Translator
Albert Gatt
Photographer
Giola Cassar
Publisher
Aġenzija Żgħażagħ, Malta
Composer
Kenneth Sacco

Alice fl-Art tal-Għeġubijiet

Alice in Wonderland
Prose
Maltese
Author
Translator
Clare AzzopardiLeanne Ellul
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Il-Fatat Kaħlani

Kaħlani the Ghost
Prose
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Romont Willy
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

“On within”, “On telling”

Poetry
English
Author
Translator
Albert Gatt
Publisher
Odyssey.pm

Il-Mostru tal-Bajja tal-Ġnejna

The Monster of Ġnejna Bay
Prose
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Maxime Lebrun
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

L-Inventarju tal-Kamra l-Kaħla

The Blue Room Inventory
Poetry
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Tinżel b’subgħajk

You descend with your fingers in “Wiċċna”
Prose
Maltese
English
Author
Translator
Maria Grech Ganado
Publisher
Ede Books, Malta

L-Ispettaklu Stupend Żanżan Kelma

The Stupendously Spectacular Spelling Bee
Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Translator
Clare AzzopardiLeanne Ellul
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Noè u l-iskojjattlu bla kwiet – Lenti fuq l-ADHD

Noe and the Restless Squirrel – A Spotlight on ADHD
Picture book
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Illustrator
Derek Fenech
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

L-Istorja ta’ Seb it-Tieni (u ta’ Seb L-Ewwel Ukoll)

The Story of Seb the Second (and of the Seb the First as well)
Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Translator
Noémie Gionet Landry
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

“fuq ħalla”, “fuq bidu”, “fuq welled”, “fuq kamra”, “fuq mewti”

in "A collection of Maltese young authors"
Poetry
Greek
Author
Translator
Antoine Cassar
Publisher
Bacchikon publications, Greece & The National Book Council, Malta

L-Għarusa Karfusa – Il-Qarċilla

Theatre script
Maltese
Author
Director
Jacob Piccinino
Production
Teatru Malta, Festivals Malta, Karnival ta’ Malta & Il-Karnival ta’ Għawdex
Related titles

L-Għarusa Karfusa – Il-Qarċilla

Theatre script
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Teatru Malta, Malta

Teresa

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Translator
Clare AzzopardiLeanne Ellul
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Inħobbok!

Gosto de Ti
Picture book
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Translator
Leanne Ellul
Illustrator
Sandra Serra
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Gramma

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the ‘Novels for Youths’ Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta
Related titles

جرام

Prose
Arabic
Author
Translator
Emad AhmadAlbert Gatt
Publisher
The National Book Council, Malta & Manshurat al-Rabie Publications, Egypt

Babica

in "After September"
Prose
Slovenian
Author
Translator
Miriam DrevAlbert Gatt
Editor
Immanuel MifsudPeter Semolič
Publisher
Antologie Vilenice, Slovenia

Gram

Prose
Dutch
Author
Translator
Hedwig TerpstraAlbert Gatt
Publisher
Ensafh, Netherlands

Baxà

Prose
Chinese
Author
Translator
Albert Gatt
Publisher
Flash Europa 28, China

Ma Rridx Immur

I don’t want to leave
Theatre script
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of Premju Francis Ebejer
Director
Jimmy Grima
Production
Arts Council Malta, Teatru Manoel & the rubberbodies collective

Metamorfosi

A book inspired by Rużar Briffa
Various
Maltese
Editor
Kit AzzopardiLeanne Ellul
Publisher
Għaqda tal-Malti – Università, Malta

Marjelena

Theatre script
Maltese
Author
Director
Josette Ciappara
Production
The Bakkanti Troupe

"Fil-fili"

in "Ex-Voto"
Various
Maltese
Author
Publisher
The Author, Heritage Malta & Arts Council Malta, Malta
Supported by

Arts Council Malta

Creative Industries Platform

Project co-ordinator: Clare Azzopardi

With the help of: Kirsty Azzopardi, Leanne Ellul and Albert Gatt

Proofreader: Dwayne Ellul

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