Wednesday, October 29, 2014

News from The IIML

Creative New Zealand/Victoria University Writer-in-Residence
We’re delighted to announce that next year’s Writing Fellow is Tim Corballis. It’s a sort of welcome back for Tim, who won the Adam Foundation Prize in 2000 for his MA thesis which became his first novel, Below. Tim also held the Randall Cottage Writers’ Residency in 2003 and the Creative New Zealand Berlin Writers’ Residency in 2005-6. He recently completed a PhD at The University of Auckland on aesthetic theory in the context of the Antipodes and he sees this theoretical work as closely informing all of his creative practice.

Next year Tim will work mainly on a time-travel novel. His next book, a pair of novellas, will be published by VUP in 2015.

 Iowa Comes to Town

Over summer we offer two special workshops with visiting graduates from the famed Iowa Writers' Workshop.
Jessie Hennen is teaching the Fiction Workshop. Jessie writes: 'It’s rumoured that while studying at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop novelist Ethan Canin turned in the same two stories over and over, tweaking them bit by bit every semester. While this worked out alright for  Canin, who now teaches at the Workshop, it is not the sort of writing this course will emphasis. Rather than painstaking, we will be generative. Rather than careful, we will be bold. That is not to say we won’t focus on editing, but rather that this course will expect you to write as much and as peculiarly as possible.
You will produce at least one surprisingly good piece of work, whether it be a story, a paragraph, or merely a line. More specifically, you will come out of this course with a portfolio of short stories and fill a journal with writing exercises. You will discuss questions like: Why do we write? Why do we read? Is it reasonable to expect to get something out of either of these activities, or are they things we should do only for their own sake? What defines the term ‘literary fiction’? How ethical is it to use our friends as characters? How, if we are stuck, do we get unstuck? You might even come up with answers, but even if not, your brain will expand into new and interesting directions.'
Nikki-Lee Birdsey is teaching the Poetry Workshop. Nikki-Lee writes: 'How do we observe the world in poetry and where have we inherited this from? English Romantic poetry has long established the tradition of the Romantic observer in the natural world, from Wordsworth’s elegy for pastoral farms in ‘Tintern Abbey’ to Keats’ historicised songbird; Coleridge’s fantastical portrait of ‘pleasure-dome’ hills to Shelley’s glacial awe in ‘Mont Blanc.’ How do we track this observer, particularly of the natural world, in modern and contemporary poetry? What do different ‘natures’ mean? Further questions will arise from this initial jump; such as, what does it mean to be located (in landscape, in emotion, in time) in a poem? What does it mean to be dislocated? How might the New Zealand natural landscape and location figure in poetry?
We will follow such questions through poets and critical works including, but not limited to, Sylvia Plath, Samuel Beckett, Lorine Niedecker, Hart Crane, Roland Barthes, John Ashbery, Bernadette Mayer, J.H. Prynne, and others. All connective tissues we will consider together. Workshop will ask you to pay attention to when you are paying attention, and to examine each others’ work closely. This course requires stamina for the long poem, hard work, complicated thinking, and light and dark humour.'

 Television, Short Fiction, Creative Nonfiction
Applications are now open for 2015 Trimester 1 courses. This is your chance to work with leading writers across a number of genres.
Dave Armstrong teaches Writing for Television.
He writes: 'Perhaps because there is some bad stuff screened, people can be dismissive of television as a literary medium. But at its best, television is a wonderful form to work in for a writer. You can move people, create moments of visual beauty, make people laugh, reach a large audience in an intimate way, and at times feel that you can change the world. And if you’re lucky you can even make a living from it! In this course we look at a variety of television genres before the students embark on their major project. After just one year of this course, I’ve been amazed at what my students have produced, and the way they have creatively mastered many aspects of television scriptwriting.'
William Brandt teaches Short Fiction.
He writes: 'This course often sees an eclectic group of students, from old to young, from merely curious to already committed. All have a lot to contribute. Exercise work can often trigger unexpected results, surprising us with what we are capable of, while the workshop process is an opportunity to see one’s work through the eyes of others. This is immensely valuable to any writer, allowing us to identify our strengths, develop what works and shed what doesn’t. There are no rules to follow, only the question ‘does it work?’ but the fun really begins when we try to get from that deceptively simple formula to the why and how.'
Harry Ricketts teaches Creative Nonfiction.
He writes: 'This year I’ve had portfolios about schooldays, friends, family members, the environment, journeys to South America, to Morocco, to China, love gone right, love gone wrong, how to live with yourself, how not to live with yourself. We all have stories but what might they mean (to us, to others) and how to tell them most effectively? These are some of the questions we keep chipping away at.'

Katherine Mansfield Fellowship
A new funding initiative to preserve the Katherine Mansfield Fellowship is underway. The Winn-Manson Menton Trust has joined with the Arts Foundation in an ambitious bid to raise a capital sum of $800,000 to ensure this iconic fellowship survives for all time. $350,000 has already been raised.

Chris Price, Damien Wilkins, Ken Duncum and Bill Manhire have all been recipients of this award. It played a significant part in our writing lives and we hope that this campaign is un grand succès.

Donations can be made online.

No comments: