First female author to specialize in detective fiction
Mary Fortune
first first
Australia (Melbourne)

Mary Fortune (Australia, b. Ireland) penned more than 500 detective stories. The first of her stories to be published was "The Dead Witness; or, The Bush Waterhole", which appeared in the Australian Journal on 20 January 1866.

Born in Belfast c. 1833, Fortune emigrated first to Canada and then to Australia and first began to publish stories in 1855, in Australia's goldfield newspapers. She wrote under a number of aliases, including "Waif Wanderer" and simply "W.W.". Fortune was the first female author to write from the viewpoint of the detective and also the first female author in Australia to write detective stories.