‘A lively, exuberant storyteller’

Carlos Amato, Mail & Guardian cartoonist

Photography © Daniel Manners

tiara headshots--2_colour_webb

In 2020, I mark nearly two decades as an award-winning storyteller and journalist.

By distilling complex subjects into accessible narratives, my mission is to tell the stories that shape the natural world and the cosmos at large, help deepen our understanding of lived experiences during the planetary emergency and explore fresh, even counterintuitive, connections between these themes. As author and book editor, I thrive in fiction and nonfiction – in English as well as Afrikaans.

Based in Cape Town, I have worked with international institutions in all media forms. Career highlights include:

– Producing multiple cover stories/photos for the press
– Writing award-winning columns (environment to life-writing)
– Winning Environmental Journalist of the Year
– Interviewing hundreds of newsmakers, from climate politics to science
– Launching South Africa’s 1st photo competition for rare nature
– Consulting creatively to big news websites
– Developing manuscripts/documentary scripts for exposés
– Writing and ghostwriting/editing/proofreading major books
– Editing and writing all kinds of copy for print/digi media
– Creating hundreds of audible hours (science/environment)
– 1st woman science writer for the SA Antarctic Programme

I currently write about the climate crisis for Daily Maverick, 2019 winner of the Global Shining Light investigative journalism awards. Please see my latest writing and radio interviews for more.

When not telling stories, I am probably on a meditative track, playing chess or exploring our Pale Blue Dot’s natural beauty.

Happy clients say:

She deserves her tiara.

– Branko Brkić, founder & editor, Daily Maverick

I was privileged to have Tiara edit my memoir, The Twinkling of an Eye. I was asked by many people how I could allow a professional editor to work with the extremely sensitive content of my son’s death from a brain tumour – but Tiara paid attention to the smallest detail. I was greatly reassured by the incredible amount of time, and emotional energy, she gave to the accurate telling of my story.

– Sue Brown, author

Beautifully told. A sense of true aestheticism. I felt understood in my own grief.

– Karina Szczurek, widow of novelist André P. Brink
Author (The Fifth Mrs Brink) on Twinkling of an Eye

My undying gratitude to Tiara who edited the final version of my memoir, Queen of the Free State, for her warmth and understanding, meticulous eye, intuitive and sensitive suggestions, all of which helped bring coherence to the chapters – seriously, how can I ever thank you?

– Jennifer Friedman, author

Tiara worked with me on a number of books for Tafelberg Publishers. I was completely satisfied with her editing/proofreading: thorough, thoughtful, effective and on time.

– Annie de Beer, publishing specialist

Tiara has contributed to Sunday Times Lifestyle since 2005. She is a gifted interviewer and a lively, exuberant storyteller.  Her memorable pieces have ranged from the secret lives of Uber drivers to the obsessions of long-distance swimmers. She is a pleasure to work with: energetic, punctual and pleasant.

– Carlos Amato, former editor, Sunday Times Lifestyle
Cartoonist, Mail & Guardian

Tiara is self-motivated with impressive credits. She is professional, her love for conservation/travel journalism is infectious and she presides over a considerable work ethic. Want a good all-rounder who’s fun to work with? Tiara’s the one.

 – Don Pinnock, author/former editor of Getaway Magazine

I have always been impressed by Tiara’s dedication to her work. She pays attention to detail, and has an excellent command of the English language as well as the concepts involved. She is interactive and co-operative and always a pleasure to have on the freelance staff. Tiara is a first-class copy editor.

– Patrick Bulger, chief subeditor, Sunday Times

The relationship between journalist and copy editor is often touchy, particularly on newspapers where the march of the deadline is constant. But Tiara’s sensitive line changes and feedback pointedly improved my work for Sunday Times Lifestyle in its final form. Her vibrant personality also helped. She understood what a sentence needed to do and be to achieve a kind of perfection.

–  Sean O’Toole, journalist, art critic

Tiara has worked under considerable pressure at times, but she has always managed to keep her sense of humour.

 – Susan Smuts, legal editor, Sunday Times