Dianne has a B.A (Honours) degree in African Languages, a M.A. (South African Literature) and M.A.(Creative Writing)

For her folktale books, THE ZEBRA'S STRIPES AND OTHER AFRICAN ANMIMAL TALES, FOLKTALE FROM AFRICA AND OTHER AFRICAN ANIMAL TALES AND THE GUINEAFOWL'S SPOTS and other AFRICAN BIRD TALES (Penguin Random House) Dianne relied on her knowledge of the oral tradition, with folktales passed on from generation to generation.

She has published a number of children’s books with Jacana Publishers, entitled WHO'S AFRAID OF THE DARK, DUDU'S BASKET, LYLE THE CROCODILE, and THE GIFT OF THE SUN, which was previously published by David Philip and Frances Lincoln in London, Farrar, Straus and Giroux in New York and translated into Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, French, Spanish, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Afrikaans and South Korean. The illustrations won Jude Daly, the Katrine Harries award. Her children’s book, THE DOVE, published by David Philip and Greenwillow Books in New York, won a Hungry Mind Review award.

Her YA novel, CHASING THE WIND, was prescribed in South Africa and her YA short story, THE CRASH, which won the MML Young Africa award, was prescribed for the Grade 12 English syllabus in both Namibia and South Africa. It has been published in Short Stories: SOUTHERN AFRICA AND BEYOND (Oxford University Press).

Her adult short story, BREAD FOR THE JOURNEY, which won the Indwe Risk/University of KwaZulu-Natal alumni short story competition, was published in the literary journal, New Contrast. GRACELAND, an adult short story was also published in New Contrast.

Dianne also wrote for, compiled and edited Durban in a Word (Penguin ) a collection of writing about Durban, where for many years, she was involved in the African Art Centre. She also published WISDOM FROM AFRICA (Penguin Random House) a collection of proverbs from the African continent.

Her Christian inspirational book, SEA, SAND AND SKY, was published by Lux Verbi. 

She also writes for adults. Together with her two daughters, Jessica (Stewart) Cairns and Lissa (Stewart) Muncer, Dianne published MARKET FOOD, a cookbook and commentary on the food market scene in South Africa which was published by Bookstorm Publishers.

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