Australian authors Kylie Maslen, Fiona Murphy and Jacinta Parsons discuss their memoirs of living with invisible disabilities or chronic conditions and navigating the healthcare system. Kylie’s wry and incisive Show Me Where it Hurts: Living with Invisible Illness details life with chronic pain and mental illness, and was named a stand-out book of 2020 by Guardian Australia. Fiona’s The Shape of Sound chronicles how she overcame shame and secrecy to claim her Deaf identity, drawing praise from Helen Garner, who said, “I devoured this in a day, fascinated, enlightened, moved”. Jacinta’s Unseen trains a microscope on the unique challenges of living with an invisible condition and was dubbed “a generous, brave, moving and deeply insightful work that will change lives for the better” by Clare Bowditch. The three speak with writer, producer, podcaster and illustrator Chloe Sargeant, co-host of the podcast Chronically Fully Sick

Please note that towards the end of this podcast episode, there is a discussion around euthanasia. 

This podcast was recorded live at the 2021 Sydney Writers' Festival.  

This recording is available on all major podcast platforms.

Kylie Maslen (Australian)

Kylie Maslen

Kylie Maslen is a writer, critic and the author of Show Me Where It Hurts: Living with Invisible Illness. Her work has appeared in The Guardian, Meanjin, Kill Your Darlings, Adelaide Review, Crikey and Junkee, among other outlets. In 2018, she won the Kill Your Darlings New Critics Award, and her essay ’I’m Trying to Tell You I’m Not Okay’ was longlisted for the Lifted Brow & RMIT non/fictionLab Prize for Experimental Nonfiction. She lives in Adelaide on Kaurna Country.

Fiona Murphy (Australian)

Fiona Murphy

Fiona Murphy is a Deaf poet and essayist. Her work has been published in Kill Your Darlings, Overland, The Big Issue, Griffith Review, among other publications. In 2019, she was awarded the Overland Fair Australia Essay Prize. Her memoir, The Shape of Sound, is about the corrosive power of secrets, stigma and shame.

Jacinta Parsons (Australian)

Jacinta Parsons

Jacinta Parsons is a broadcaster, radio maker, writer, public speaker and author of the memoir Unseen: The secret life of chronic illness. She currently hosts Afternoons on ABC Melbourne delivering a popular mix of art, culture and ideas.

Chloe Sargeant (Australian)

Chloe Sargeant

Chloe Sargeant is a Sydney-based writer, producer, podcaster and illustrator, proudly from the northern suburbs of South Australia. Her writing has been published by SBS, ABC,, Junkee,, whimn, Concrete Playground, and Broadsheet. She won Journalist of the Year at the 2017 Australian LGBTI Awards, and was a featured author in 2018 anthology, Going Postal: More Than Yes Or No and 2020 anthology New Voices on Food. She currently writes a regular column about chronic illness for Junkee called 'Chronic & Iconic', and also co-hosts the chaotic yet endearing fortnightly podcast Chronically Fully Sick.