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A brilliant debut from a neurodiverse author that explores
a young woman’s magical, sensitive,
and passionate inner world.



A young woman gets ready to go to a party. She arrives, feels overwhelmed, leaves, and then returns. Minutely attuned to the people who come into her view, and alternating between alienation and profound connection, she is hilarious, self-aware, sometimes acerbic, and always honest.

And by the end of the night, she’s shown us something radical about love, loss, and the need to belong.



‘A daring, prismatic novel about seeing and being seen …Ryan’s clarity of vision imbues the ordinary with cosmic significance.’
Laura Elizabeth Woollett, author of Beautiful Revolutionary 

‘[A] precious gemstone of a novel … The world of this book is the world of a woman who knows herself because she has needed to.’
Laura McPhee-Browne, author of Cherry Beach

‘A resolute deep dive into an inner self, a transcendent character study, and a timely reminder that there’s an entire universe inside of everyone we meet.’
Matthew Quick, author of The Silver Linings Playbook

‘A sharp, surprising, uncompromising book that treats thinking and watching as sources of real narrative power.’
Ronnie Scott, author of The Adversary

‘In prose filled with humour and warm light, Ryan unearths the bright, luminous soul of each animate and inanimate being she encounters.’
Meng Jin, author of Little Gods

‘Ryan’s novel covers less than 24 hours, but by book’s end, readers are left feeling remarkably bonded with this fiercely independent young woman.’

‘The narrator’s voice is astute, clear, and strong as the vodka she likes … Ryan has created a marvellous woman and a joyous story.’
Shelf Awareness

‘Culminates in unexpected intimacy, not only between the narrator and her new friend, but also between the reader and an extraordinary mind.’



Madeleine Ryan is an Australian writer, director, and actor. She’s been widely published in Australia and overseas, including in The New York Times, Lenny Letter, Bustle, The Age, The Daily Telegraph, Vice, SBS, and The Sydney Morning Herald. She currently lives in rural Victoria. A Room Called Earth is her first novel.

You can find her online at



I decided to wear a kimono and high heels to the party because I wanted people to see me in a kimono and high heels at the party. I tried putting chopsticks from the kitchen drawer in my hair and it felt like it was overdoing things a bit, so I put them back. I even considered painting the chopsticks black because they were brown, and black would have suited my outfit better. Yet the fact that I considered painting them at all caused me to be embarrassed at myself, so I decided to ditch accessories that were at one time used to stuff pad thai into someone’s face. Painted or not, you can’t change the reality of what chopsticks are or the main way that they’ve been used for, like, centuries. Eons, even. So let a chopstick be a chopstick, and my hair can be what it is, too.




  • Major media campaign including feature interviews in newspapers and on radio
  • Blanket review coverage including in magazines, newspapers, and online
  • Author tour including bookstore events and literary festivals
  • Author feature in Vogue in lead-up to publication (Jan 2021)
  • Advertising across literary, print, and digital media
  • Pre-sale and on-publication Facebook and Instagram advertising
  • Bookstore catalogues and newsletter promotions

Email Scribe Publications for your chance to receive an advance copy of A Room Called Earth.




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Matthia Dempsey

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