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Sally McLean

Agent: Incognita Enterprises
South Yarra, Victoria, Australia


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Poet, author, lyricist and screenwriter, Sally began her obsession with the written
word at the age of 12, when she wrote her first novel. Being all too aware of her
other obsession - that of perfectionism - she gave her one and only copy of the
manuscript to a friend to keep in a safe place for a while, so she wouldn't be
tempted to rework it for the thirtieth time. Unfortunately that friend's mother
discovered the work and, mistaking this handwritten masterpiece for her son's old
homework notes, used it for kindling in the sitting room fireplace over the ensuing

Several things were learnt from this series of events. Most particularly - never give
the only copy of your work to anyone (especially if they have a fireplace in their
home and have been born into a family headed by a frighteningly neat parent) and if
you want to keep something safe, don't give it to a boy who loses his diary and
wallet more often than he eats breakfast.

Deciding from this experience that maybe novels weren't her thing, Sally focused
instead on poetry - going on to become a published poet at the age of 15, which
continues to the present day. She has been published in various anthologies in
Australia, the UK, US and Canada, culminating in being named an International
Poet of Merit for 2002 (obviously those editors didn't have a fireplace handy).

She branched out to short story and children's tales in 2000, again being published
in magazines and anthologies in Australia, Canada and the UK, and is currently
working on her first short story collection for publication by Evening Star Press.
During this period, her pseudonym - "A.M. Serpentine" - first appeared on her work.
She's not really sure why that name came into being - it just seemed a good idea
at the time, and she still uses it when the mood takes her.

In 1997, Sally suddenly had the inspiration to try her hand at writing a screenplay.
The feature, "A Little Rain Must Fall", was written in three months and produced by
Mynfel Films in London, with Sally in the lead role (yes, she is also an actress).
The film was launched at Ealing Studios to an invited audience, which resulted in
discusssions with the BBC and the Bravo Channel in the UK, as well as invitations
for screenings from the Cannes and Venice Film Festivals.

Realising that she had found a new medium to play with, she dedicated every
waking minute to her next feature script "The Legend of Dalny" (working title),
which is now under development for production in the UK.

She has additionally written two plays "Chasing Pegasus (a play in ten chords)"
and "PS I Love You", both of which have been produced in Melbourne. She has
also written the two short films "fixNATION" and "Brigit & Benny (a modern
faerietale)", both of which have been filmed and seen on television channels such
as Foxtel and Channel 31 in Australia.

Figuring that enough time had passed, Sally then returned to the arena of writing
prose pieces longer than ten pages, and is currently tearing out her hair over her
first novel as an adult - "Antaguar" - due for completion sometime in the next
decade (if she can get her head around the concept of deadlines and sticking to her
well-conceived, but poorly applied writing schedule). She is additionally distracting
herself with two more feature-length screenplays.

Her current project is as writer/director on the docudrama project "A Life
Unexpected: The Franz Stampfl Story" ( for
television broadcast.

She still finds the time to jot down the odd poem and short story - although she
would like to ask the thief who stole her bag back in 2001 to please return her
writer's journal, as she is sure there was at least one really brilliant poem contained
therein that she can't remember a single line from - and it's keeping her awake at

It's either that, or the coffee.

Published writer: Yes

Freelance: Yes


Published works:


  • Chasing Pegasus (a play in ten chords)