Ursula was born and grew up in Sydney in a family of writers, and wanted to be a writer from the age of six. She is now the author of over 50 books for children and young adults and her work is published all over the world. She has won several national literary awards, including the Victorian, Queensland and South Australian State Awards for literature, and has also won the NSW Premier's Literary Award a record five times, more than any other writer in the history of the awards. Internationally she has been nominated for both the Hans Christian Andersen award and the Astrid Lindgren prize. She has a PhD in English literature and currently lives in Sydney.