Maria Staal


Maria Staal was born in the Netherlands in 1969 and studied construction engineering at her local technical college, later specialising herself in architectural history.

A love of travelling led her to Australia in 1994, where she worked and travelled for a year. Back in her native country, she worked for the local city council advising people on restoring their old house. The travel bug was still present though, and at the turn of the millennium she embarked as a passenger on a container ship that took her, once again, to Australia. This time she travelled for a year-and-a-half visiting Australia and New Zealand, before returning to Europe on another container ship.

Her adventures on the container ships led to an impromptu job in 2003, when she started working for a shipping company writing guidebooks for their passengers.

In 2004, Maria moved to York in the United Kingdom, where she lived for four years, working in a delicatessen shop while at the same time writing her first book Romans, Vikings, Churches and Chocolate. Her second book From Dissenters to Fire Engines soon followed. In 2008 Maria moved back to the Netherlands where she started writing her third book Time Zones, Containers and Three Square Meals a Day, which focuses on the six months she had previously worked on container ships. Its sequel More Stories of Time Zones and Containers came out in April 2011.

At the moment Maria is co-writing a How To book about a new writing technique she and her developmental editor Eva pioneered.

To find out more about Maria and to read her blog, please visit her website at, or check out the books written by Maria by clicking on the links below.

Titles written by Maria Staal