News of New Zealanders via Global Media

In Search of a History

In Search of a History

New Zealand film producer and public speaker Anna Wilding is now writing regularly for the TennisGrandStand site, and in her first column, as the US Open approaches, she writes about her great uncle, tennis…

Figments of the imagination

Figments of the imagination

Wellington author Elizabeth Knox’s Dreamhunter Duet is reviewed in Canadian newspaper The Star Phoenix. The two “intricate” fantasy titles are highly recommended for young adults, and are described as “intriguing” and “intelligent”. The first…

Confronting history

Confronting history

Historian and media commentator Paul Moon’s latest book This Horrid Practice delves into the subject of Maori cannibalism, the author arguing that the amount of evidence of the action was “overwhelming” and “too important…

Travel award for editor

Travel award for editor

Taumarunui travel writer and publishing editor of Inside Tourism Nigel Coventry has been named the 2008 Pasific Asia Travel Association Travel Journalist of the Year. PATA president Peter de Jong said Coventry had been…

Introducing Tauwhitu

Introducing Tauwhitu

In a Kerikeri pub sometime in the 1980s, Boston author Christina Thompson met a group of Maori having pints after a day spent diving for crayfish and uses this first encounter with native New…

Underwear wanderings

Underwear wanderings

Christchurch travel writer and columnist Joe Bennett’s quest to find the origins of his five-pack of Chinese-manufactured underpants, took him to a remote western corner of China and the cotton fields of Xinjiang. Bennett’s…

Piercing Revelation

Piercing Revelation

Janet Frame’s 1963 novel, Towards Another Summer, written in London and first published posthumously in New Zealand in 2007, is considered by Guardian reviewer Rachel Cooke. Towards Another Summer is based on a weekend…

Hatched on a poultry farm

Hatched on a poultry farm

Author Joy Cowley’s novel Chicken Feathers is reviewed this month in The Boston Globe, her storytelling described as “effortless mastery”. Sweden had Astrid Lindgren, and France its Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Each great writer possesses…

Sausage Day cinema

Sausage Day cinema

Janet Frame was a waitress at Dunedin’s Grand Hotel when she wrote A Night at the Opera, until now unknown, thought to be written in 1954, and this month published in the latest issue…

Short lines hide

Short lines hide

Wellington poet Bill Manhire takes the cover of the 2008 spring edition of literary periodical Poetry London, in which his poems ‘Song with a Chorus’, ‘Velvet’ and ‘The Carpe Diem Poem’ appear. Manhire read…

Colonial Space Rockets

Colonial Space Rockets

First published in New Zealand in 1881, the second volume of science fiction  novella The Great Romance lay hidden on the shelves of Dunedin’s Hocken Library until the 1990s when the work was discovered….

London from home

London from home

New Zealand author Emily Perkins leans out to close a window at her publisher’s in Soho and “raising her voice over a building site, takes a deep breath of London air to say, ‘It’s…

Autumn and Rainbows

Autumn and Rainbows

From Takaka, Telegraph foreign correspondent Peter Foster writes a weekly blog on life in the small South Island town, population: 1,182. Foster was the Telegraph’s South Asia Correspondent for four years until January 2008…

Lucky Dagg at the Logies

Lucky Dagg at the Logies

Comedian and writer John Clarke, born in Palmerston North and famous for creating the “elegantly dressed” farmer Fred Dagg and his seven sons, all Trevors, will be inducted into the Australian Logies Hall of…

Marsh Remembered

Marsh Remembered

Christchurch-born writer Dame Ngaio Marsh has been named one of the Daily Telegraph’s 50 favourite crime writers, with Vintage Murder (1937) recommended. Marsh is described as “a New Zealander who created a quintessentially English…

Laureate discovers

Laureate discovers

Wellington poet Bill Manhire is profiled in The Age as a man who quite  accidentally fell upon letters, who secretly wrote at school until he read Walt Whitman in his final year at school….

Campion on Frame

Campion on Frame

Jane Campion writes about her encounters with creative compatriot Janet Frame in The Guardian this month. The NZ-born filmmaker brought Frame’s life story to an international audience with her acclaimed film An Angel at…

Writing for Change

Writing for Change

Icon Books (UK) has just released its third edition of 50 Facts That Should Change the World, the best-selling book by NZ journalist Jessica Williams. 50 Facts aims to shock readers into social…

Posthumous gem

Posthumous gem

The Janet Frame Literary Trust has posthumously published a novella written by the great NZ author in 1963. Dismissed by Frame as “embarrassingly personal”, Towards Another Summer is about a homesick NZ writer who…

Ongoing impact

Ongoing impact

A Dutch academic has published a book examining the impact Once Were Warriors has had on NZ culture. Once Were Warriors The Aftermath: The Controversy of Once Were Warriors in Aotearoa New Zealand…

Close But No Booker

Close But No Booker

Wellington author Lloyd Jones has missed out on the Man Booker prize, despite his novel Mister Pip being the bookies’ favourite to win. The award went to Irish author Anne Enright for The Gathering….

Fashion writer swaps stilettos for saddles

Fashion writer swaps stilettos for saddles

Well-known NZ fashion reporter Stacy Gregg has turned her hand to writing children’s fiction. Gregg, a keen horse rider as a young woman, noticed a gap in the market for well written pony…

“Imaginative daring” wins literary gong

“Imaginative daring” wins literary gong

New Zealander Kirsty Gunn has won the Sundial Scottish Arts Council Book of the Year award, one of Scotland’s most esteemed literary prizes. Gunn, a professor of creative writing at Dundee University, received the…

Booker number two?

Booker number two?

Lloyd Jones‘ Mister Pip has made the Man Booker Prize longlist, alongside works by Ian McEwan and A N Wilson. The 13 titles were selected from over 100 international entries. “As for…

Castaway tales from edge of the world

Castaway tales from edge of the world

The latest book by Wellington maritime historian Joan Druett uses personal memoirs to recount two very different survival stories on the Auckland Islands, 500km south of NZ. Island of the Lost: Shipwrecked on the…

NZ Academic Unlocks 17th Century Secrets

NZ Academic Unlocks 17th Century Secrets

Research by a NZ academic launched a 40-year code-breaking endeavour that has resulted in the publication of an important 17th century English diary. Robin Gwynn, formerly an associate professor of history at Massey University,…

No ordinary life

No ordinary life

A new book about London literary marriages features NZ author Katherine Mansfield and her second husband, John Middleton Murry. Uncommon Arrangements: Seven Portraits of Married Life in London Literary Circles (1910-1939) by…

Devastating simplicity

Devastating simplicity

Mister Pip, the Commonwealth Prize-winning novel by Wellingtonian Lloyd Jones, is praised both for its lyricism and its deft handling of post-colonial issues in the Guardian. “The simplicity with which he describes the atrocities…

Backstage Essential

Backstage Essential

NZ-born osteopath to the stars Garry Trainer has released a new book, Back Chat, with health writer Tania Alexander. Back Chat examines 40 individual case studies of back pain, identifying common causes and…

Top shelf Wellington author

Top shelf Wellington author

Lloyd Jones has won the Commonwealth Writers Prize overall best book award for his novel Mister Pip. The NZ $27,400 cheque was presented to Jones at the Calabash Literary Festival in St Elizabeth, Jamaica,…

In the frame

In the frame

Scottish author Andrew O’Hagan’s inspiring opening address at this month’s Sydney Writers’ Festival included mention of NZ literary great, Janet Frame. The author of Living in the Maniototo, The Edge of the Alphabet and…

Pub weirdo finds his voice

Pub weirdo finds his voice

South London-based NZ writer Paul Ewen has released his first book, London Pub Reviews. Ewen set up his own publishing company, Shoes With Rockets, to make sure the collection of humorous fictional reviews…

The way of Music

The way of Music

The Way of Music by Robin Maconie (pictured), a New Zealand born composer and musicologist who studied with Olivier Messiaen and Karlheinz Stockhausen, is a listener’s guide to the hidden meanings of…

Short and Sweet

Short and Sweet

Auckland writer Charlotte Grimshaw has been nominated for the world’s richest prize for collected short stories, the £35,000 Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. Grimshaw joins 32 authors on the Irish event’s  longlist,…

“A Little Savage From New Zealand”

“A Little Savage From New Zealand”

A Telegraph review of Penguin’s Collected Stories of Katherine Mansfield celebrates the influential author’s short yet remarkable life. Born in Wellington in 1888, Mansfield made a strong and lasting impression on the London literary…

Writing in the margins

Writing in the margins

Auckland writer Tzeming Mok spoke about globalization and the Chinese Diaspora at last month’s Shanghai Literature Festival. Mok, a published poet, author, blogger and journalist, is known for writing about issues of displacement, with…

Smither reveals wild side over tea and cake

Smither reveals wild side over tea and cake

NZ poet laureate Elizabeth Smither was a guest speaker at the recent Kuala Lumpur International Literary Festival. A journalist interviewing her for the Malaysian Star was amazed at her calm and easygoing persona, which…

Piano plagiarism causes aesthetic dilemma

Piano plagiarism causes aesthetic dilemma

Denis Dutton, Canterbury University professor and founding editor of Arts & Letters Daily, writes about a “scandal unparalleled in the annals of classical music” for the New York Times. Dutton’s piece explores the…

Making Poetry Out of Darkness

Making Poetry Out of Darkness

A profile of novelist, poet and critic CK Stead focuses on both his historical prominence in the NZ literary scene and his remarkable late-life burst of creativity. Last year, Stead (74) published his eleventh…

Cash Versus Creativity

Cash Versus Creativity

Auckland-raised author Fay Weldon mourns the death of literary creativity in a passionate column for The Times. “Time was when popularity was the mark of artistic failure,” she complains, “These days it’s the other…

South Pacific literati

South Pacific literati

Five NZ writers are finalists for this year’s Commonwealth Writers’ Prize, one of the most prestigious  literary awards. Ocean Roads by James George, Mr Pip by Lloyd Jones and The Fainter by Damien Wilkins…

Linda Niccol notches British Screenplay Prize

Linda Niccol notches British Screenplay Prize

Wellington writer Linda Niccol has won the prestigious British Short Screenplay Prize ahead of 200+ other screenwriters. Her script for The Handkerchief was judged best script by a panel that included Kenneth Branagh,…

Darkly brilliant

Darkly brilliant

Award-winning NZ author Carl Shuker has released his second novel to immediate acclaim. Set in NZ, The Lazy Boys is a harrowing account of a group of friends spiralling out of control during their…

Million dollar baby

Million dollar baby

An entrepreneurial NZ website is selling words for SUS1 each in a bid to create a one-of-a-kind multi-authored novel. The brains behind anovelmillion.com is Australian born Aditya Kesarcodi-Watson. “Anybody is capable of buying…

Itinerant observer

Itinerant observer

Groundbreaking NZ anthropologist, Michael Jackson, currently Visiting Professor in World Religions at Harvard Divinity School, has released his memoirs. Titled The Accidental Anthropologist, the book details his nomadic lifestyle since leaving NZ as…

Card Sharks Revealed

Card Sharks Revealed

Swimming with the Devil Fish, Des Wilson’s timely history of the British poker scene, gets a great review in the Guardian. “While the US market is saturated with poker manuals and ghosted autobiographies, the…

A Place in the Sun

A Place in the Sun

Granta editor, Ian Jack, writes about Katherine Mansfield’s convalescence in Menton for the Guardian. Menton, a resort town on the French Riviera, was renowned for its curative sea air in the early 20th century….

Alternative History 101

Alternative History 101

Historian Gavin Menzies recently visited NZ to promote his controversial bestseller 1421. One of the most contentious theories in the book is that NZ was mapped and settled by Chinese 3o0 years before…

Baigent Down But Not Out

Baigent Down But Not Out

The Guardian interviews NZ born writer and historian Michael Baigent – “the man who sued Dan Brown and lost.” Baigent co-authored The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail with Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln….

Weldon in Class and on Screen

Weldon in Class and on Screen

NZ raised novelist Fay Weldon has signed on to teach creative writing at Brunel University, as part of the UK institution’s new MA course. The prolific writer of bestsellers including Puff Ball, Praxis and…

An Outside View

An Outside View

The latest book by acclaimed British author, Jenny Diski – On Trying to Keep Still – opens with her visit to NZ in 2004 for the NZ International Arts Festival’s Writers and Readers Week….

Career ready for take off

Career ready for take off

Departure Lounge, the latest novel by Auckland writer Chad Taylor, has garnered praise abroad for its cool, noir aesthetics. The Sydney Morning Herald calls Taylor “impressive,” while the review by Washington Post senior critic,…

Out in the Open

Out in the Open

An interview with mystery author Anne Perry in the Times inevitably brings up her former life in NZ as Juliet Hulme, one half of the murderous teenage duo portrayed in Peter Jackson’s Heavenly Creatures….

Her mother’s daughter

Her mother’s daughter

Linda Carroll, therapist, writer and mother of Courtney Love has written her memoirs, which include an account of the family’s unconventional attempt to live an alternative lifestyle in Nelson and their struggle to deal…

Metapsychology

Metapsychology

Massey University PhD and Wairarapa philosopher Derek Mesler has been published by the MIT Press. The Act of Thinking is “the work of a mature, sophisticated and profound thinker who may just have written…

South Sea Saga

South Sea Saga

Pamela Stephenson, NZ born psychologist, author and wife to comedian Billy Connolly, has published a book retracing the 19th century travels of Fanny and Robert Louis Stevenson. The Advertiser: ” loosely as the diary…