About me

About me

I’m an Australian-based freelance writer covering pretty much anything related to people and science, with a special focus on human, animal and planetary health. I morphed from researcher to science writer in 2017, after publishing around 60 academic peer-reviewed papers and book chapters.

Since becoming a freelancer I have written more than 600 stories for public outlets, including regular contributions to The Guardian, Cosmos Magazine, Forbes Science, Nature Index, and Health Agenda Magazine. Other outlets include Ensia, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Washington Post, The New York Times (Australia Diary), The New Daily, Australia’s Science Channel, UniSA Enterprise Magazine, The Conversation, The QUO and Massive Science.

I also provide editing and proofreading services. Work experience in this area includes proofreading for a law book company, regular editing for Warringal Publications (Nutridate; Health & PE), targeted at high school students, since 2017 and filling in for the editor of Cosmos online for seven weeks (four weeks from Sept-Oct 2019 and three weeks in March 2020). Drawing on my experience completing a PhD in 2005, providing 10 years of PhD supervision, doing a sub-major in multimedia and peer reviewing more than 100 papers, I also edit, proofread and format PhD theses.

After becoming a freelance writer, one of my stories was selected for the Best Australian Science Writing 2019 anthology; I was awarded the Australasian Medical Writers Association’s 2019 Early Career Award and won the Crawford Fund’s Food Security Journalism Award.

My work is grounded in seemingly disparate but interrelated qualifications and experience spanning health, psychology, nutrition, dietetics, scientific research, multimedia and parenting.

It’s unlikely that I would have pursued this combination of work and studies if I’d mapped my career in advance. But they evolved to equip me for writing about a broad and sometimes unexpectedly interrelated range of topics, enriched by an online Post Baccalaureate Certificate in Science Writing with Johns Hopkins University, completed in May 2019.

After pulling off an Honours Psychology degree (quite a feat given my prior track record) around the dawn of this century, I embarked on a PhD, followed by more than 10 years’ research into emotional intelligence, links between mental health and nutrition, health benefits of the traditional Mediterranean diet, and how parents shape kids’ diets.

During my research career, I graduated from a Master of Dietetics and practiced clinically part-time. I won several awards for my research including a Fresh Science People’s Choice Award in 2005, an Australian Research Council Fellowship from 2007-10, a South Australian (SA) Science Excellence Award in 2011 and an SA Health Award in 2013.

In 2017 I completed an intensive Science in the Media course through the Australian National University. Courses with Johns Hopkins included Techniques of Science-Medical Writing, Science-Medical Writing Workshop, The Literature of Science, Science Narratives Workshop and Science Profiles Workshop – Writing about People – all with Grade A.

My writing interests include health, food and nutrition, parenting, child and adult development, animal welfare, sustainability and biodiversity, and more generally all things related to us fascinating and complex human beings and the wondrous planet we are blessed to inhabit.

I provide quick turnarounds on embargoed stories and love to dive deeper in longer form features. I welcome writing, editing and proofreading requests at natalie.parletta@gmail.com.

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