Friday, June 07, 2019

The Divine Muses


The Divine Muses 

invites entries for NEW VOICES – Emerging poets competition 2019 




Results to be announced at Divine Muses Poetry Reading on National Poetry Day, 23 August 2019. 


Judge - Poet & Editor, Elizabeth Welsh 


First Prize: $200 in Unity Book’s book tokens 
Second Prize: $100 in Unity Book’s book tokens 


The competition is open only to writers considered ‘emerging’ i.e. have not published one or more books (fiction, poetry, nonfiction) with a New Zealand or overseas publisher, and is a current or former undergraduate (BA, Hons, BSc, BComm etc) or Masters student attending The University of Auckland, Auckland University of Technology, Manukau Institute of Technology and Massey University (Albany Campus, Auckland only) or student or graduate of Blue Haven Writers Workshops.


To view the complete entry details go to  to download the entry form.


Either opt to print the entry form and then choose save as a PDF or export as a PDF. When you open the PDF click on edit and then in the header section select “T add Text” and fill in the form, save and email your entry as per instructions provided.


This year’s Divine Muses Reading and the announcement of the winners will be held at the Central Library, Auckland CBD.


We are delighted to announce Elizabeth Welsh the winner of 2012 NEW VOICES – Emerging Poets Competition as this year’s Judge.

Elizabeth’s debut poetry collection, Over There a Mountain, was published by Makora Press in 2018.



For further details contact either  


Siobhan Harvey – Organiser -


Tuesday, April 23, 2019

University of Otago - Two honorary doctorates to be awarded in May


Two honorary doctorates to be awarded in May


Two Otago Alumni will be conferred with honorary doctorates at May graduation ceremonies next month.


Hon Justice Forrest Miller

 Honourable Justice Forrest (Forrie) Miller’s contribution to the modernisation of New Zealand’s court systems will be recognised when he receives an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the University of Otago at its 18 May graduation ceremony. 

 Born in South Otago in 1956, Justice Miller gained a Bachelor of Arts (History) from Otago in 1978 and an LLB with honours in 1981.

 After his studies he worked in Alexandra for Bodkins Solicitors and in the mid-1980s moved to Wellington to join Chapman Tripp, where he worked in a range of general practice areas, including commercial and public law litigation (specialising in securities) and regulatory and competition law. He became a partner at the firm in 1987.  

 He was appointed to the High Court of New Zealand in 2004, and to the Court of Appeal in 2013.

 In 2013 he also became one of the first New Zealanders to receive the Australian Institute of Judicial Administration Award for Excellence.

 The award jury recognised his efforts establishing the Earthquake Commission list, created in 2011, which was aimed at reducing the burden on the courts system by dealing with cases efficiently in the wake of the Christchurch earthquakes.  All case-managed conferences – where judges and lawyers meet before the litigation process to resolve differences – were managed by Justice Miller until his appointment to the Court of Appeal in 2013.

 Before his appointment to the Court of Appeal the Judge was heavily involved in reforms which reducing waiting lists for civil hearings in the High Court.

 Justice Miller has been instrumental in developing electronic casebooks, which are now routinely used for hearings in the Court of Appeal.  He chairs the Judicial Reference Group, which is a cross-bench committee working with the Ministry of Justice to modernise the court system by, among other things, developing an electronic filing and case management system for all New Zealand courts. 

 He also chairs the Judicial Libraries Management Board, which exercises governance responsibilities over the quality of judicial libraries. The Board’s current focus is on improving judges' access to electronic resources, to ensure they have access to important works from the judicial library. 

 Justice Miller has maintained strong links with the University’s Faculty of Law and has often returns to Otago to judge student competitions. He has also engaged with research in the Faculty, including a 2018 Legal Issues Centre report on delays in the High Court to which he contributed feedback and expertise. 

 He has also served as chairman of Unison Networks Ltd, the electricity distributor for the Hawke’s Bay, Rotorua and Taupo regions, and as a Wellington Girls’ College Board of Trustees member.

 •           Sat 18 May graduation ceremony at 4 pm (Commerce and Law) Justice Forrest Miller, Court of Appeal, Hon LLD


Bridget Williams


Bridget Williams, the founder of New Zealand’s leading specialist non-fiction press and alumna of the University of Otago, will receive an honorary Doctorate of Literature on 18 May.

 Bridget Williams (ONZM MBE) is considered a hugely influential figure in New Zealand letters and publishing, and an outstanding graduate of the University of Otago, where she completed a Bachelor of Arts.

 Her initial foray into intellectual life was in Oxford as a research assistant to literary scholars Dame Helen Gardner and Richard Ellmann. After a stint at Oxford University Press in the United Kingdom, Ms Williams returned to New Zealand in 1976. She worked initially for the New Zealand branch of Oxford University Press, where she helped shape what would become the Oxford History of New Zealand, a volume that marked the coming of age of New Zealand historical scholarship.

 In 1981, she struck out into independent publishing, founding Port Nicholson Press in Wellington. Taking this small New Zealand firm into multi-national ownership with Allen & Unwin Australia in the mid-1980s, Ms Williams became the managing director of Allen & Unwin New Zealand.  In that capacity, she established a publishing partnership with the multi-volume Dictionary of New Zealand Biography as well as important scholarly works such as Claudia Orange’s The Treaty of Waitangi.  In these years too, her publishing reflected the new engagement with feminist writing, and she had a key role in establishing the nationwide Listener Women’s Book Festival.

 In 1990 she established Bridget Williams Books, a press that has risen to become New Zealand’s leading specialist non-fiction press. She has worked with New Zealand’s leading social scientists and humanities scholars, producing a large number of award-winning volumes.  Significant amongst these has been a commitment to works on Maori history, with the landmark Tangata Whenua: An Illustrated History by Atholl Anderson, Judith Binney and Aroha Harris published to acclaim in 2014.  In recent years the BWB Texts Series – short, moderately-priced volumes – have catalysed public debate over a range of pressing cultural and political issues.

 Hugely respected in the world of publishing, Bridget Williams has played an integral role in facilitating public conversations in New Zealand, its history, identity and politics, she has been extremely influential in shaping New Zealand intellectual life and cultural debate.

 Sat 18 May graduation ceremony at 1 pm (Humanities) Bridget Williams, Publisher, Hon LittD

Off the Shelf

April 22, 2019
Sarah Jane Abbott


A Menagerie of Books: 9 Reads for Animal Lovers

I’m always drawn to a book with an animal in the title. . . . Is the book about the animal or the people who work with it? Or, just as interesting, what is the animal meant to symbolize?: What does a wolf have to do with a coming-of-age story, or an octopus with a tale about a man and his dog? For all the animal lovers out there, here is a menagerie of animal-titled books.

Publishers Lunch

Stephen Brayda will join the Harper One Group on April 24 as art director for Harper Via, Amistad and Harper Espanol, reporting to Judith Curr. He was previously with Riverhead.

Director of events at Copperfield's Books Barbara Lane debuts a column for the San Francisco Chronicle, Chapters and Verse, where she will "discuss what I love about the literary world, often focusing on our rich Northern California scene, personalities, trends, controversies and more."

As agent Esther Newberg had indicated in an interview a year ago, the unfinished memoir by the late Prince Rogers Nelson will be published October 29 by Random House, still listed as a Spiegel & Grau book even though that imprint was recently discontinued. The portion Prince had already written, "pages that brings us into Prince’s childhood world through his own lyrical prose," comprises the first of four parts. The rest of the book features "a scrapbook of Prince's writing and photos," another set of images showing his evolution, and "his original handwritten treatment for Purple Rain." New Yorker writer Dan Piepenbring, whom Prince had selected as a collaborator for the book, writes an introduction.

The Barnes & Noble in the Virginia Beach, VA's Town Center will close for renovation on April 28, reopening in late fall. The renovation will include a redesigned children's section and a space for author visits, based on "one of Barnes & Noble's latest prototypes."

In Daytona Beach, FL, the company opened a new 15,000-square-foot store at Tomoka Town Center, their 11th new format store. It replaces their store on W. International Speedway.

Separately, BN also announced its Discover Great New Writers list for summer.

Vietnam War novel takes out top international award

Horowhenua author, Carole Brungar, has won a gold medal for her third novel, The Nam Shadow, in the internationally acclaimed Independent Publisher Book Awards.

Brungar’s novel won first place in the Australia/New Zealand/Pacific Rim category.

The Independent Publisher Book Awards, known as the IPPY Awards, were established in 1996 to recognise excellence in independent publishing worldwide and reward those who exhibit the courage, innovation, and creativity to bring about change in the world of publishing.

Each year the awards are intended to reward exemplary books from among independently owned and operated publishers, foundation or university presses and independent publishers who publish less than fifty titles per year.

The Nam Shadow is the second Vietnam novel in a series by the Levin author. It follows on from The Nam Legacy, also an award winning novel. The novels explore the lives of New Zealanders before, during and after the Vietnam War.

Where The Nam Legacy focused on the affects of PTSD, The Nam Shadow highlights the consequences of exposure to Agent Orange and other chemicals used during the Vietnam war.

“There aren’t many New Zealand stories that are set around the Vietnam War, or that explore the consequences of the war,” Carole said. “I would like to think that those men and women who went to Vietnam and their experiences as a consequence, are not forgotten.”

The Nam Shadow is available from bookstores across New Zealand or the author’s website,

Friday, April 12, 2019

Latest from The Bookseller

W H Smith Travel
W H Smith plans to cull its backlist and build areas of growth such as children's and lighter readers with a "forensic store by store focus on space management to optimise the returns from core categories".
Helena Morrisey
Dame Helena Morrissey challenged trade leaders over key aspects of their diversity strategies, as the Publishers Association's new president Peter Phillips laid out his aims for the year.
David Cameron
HarperCollins insists it will publish David Cameron's memoir this autumn as planned, amid reports the former prime minister is pushing back publication due to a promise he made to Theresa May.
High Street
A record number of shops closed in Britain last year with 16 stores closing a day, but bookshops are bucking the trend. 
Jeanette Winterson
The "boomerang" nature of time was discussed at the Vintage for Change evening, along with teen revolution and the sensibilities of sexbots, as Jeanette Winterson and six other authors considered the “turbulent times” of present day.
Cambridge University Press has entered into a three-year transformative agreement with the University of California (UC), in what is said to be UC's first such partnership with a major publisher.

Bertelsmann plans to close its Nuremberg printing site by April 2021, and has begun immediate talks with employee representatives, with around 670 permanent staffers and 250 contract workers affected.
Grazia has run its last dedicated books page, 'Shelf Life', under books editor Alexandra Heminsley, after a redesign.
Jasmine Richards
Jasmine Richards, formerly a publisher at Oxford University Press (OUP), has launched a fiction development company to create inclusive stories for children.
Katie Price
The Roald Dahl Story Company has hired Katie Price, currently director of licensing at Hachette Children’s Group, as its new head of books.
Gavin Thurston
Seven Dials has scooped the “extraordinary” memoir of veteran "Our Planet" and "Blue Planet 2" filmmaker Gavin Thurston, with a foreword by Sir David Attenborough.

Headline Home has snapped-up a cookbook by chef and YouTuber Ian Haste at auction, featuring recipes based on weekly shopping lists.

The 7 Day Basket

New series by NZ writer Ged Maybury

Once described as “our county's leading writer in this field”*, Christchurch sci-fi writer Ged Maybury effectively disappeared after 15 years and 12 successful children's books – two of which made the finals of the NZ Children's Book of the Year Awards (1994, 2001).

Now he is back with his most ambitious project to date: a six-book / 800,000-word Steampunk series set upon a bizarre “alt-Earth” where Britain is a vast mat of hovering “skylands”, America is still a British colony, and steamships have more in common with flying saucers than anything else.

Drawing upon a long apprenticeship of producing well-polished best-sellers for Scholastic, Harper Collins and Cape Catley, he now turns up the steam (and the adult content) on a multitude of delightfully detailed fantasy/steampunk settings riddled with mad scientists, villains, dangerous and/or attractive antagonists and a sad series of intense (sometimes steamy) love affairs.

'Across the Stonewind Sky' is the series title and each book advances our straight-laced British hero deeper into various kinds of steaming do-do the moment he flies into a curious zone called The Storm's Domain – where airships rule, and Britain doesn't. It's the Victorian era writ large, but it's not just a man's world. Rodney is constantly thrown into the company of a series of competent purposeful women, some of them … how to say this: 'are on the villain spectrum'. Maybury has already earned praise for his female characters.


The first two books; 'Across the Stonewind Sky'** & 'Into the Heart of Varste' are now available at:

As an re-introductory offer, he has priced Book One at $0.00. Book Two at the normal price of $2.99. Book Three: “Hoverrim the Hunted” is due out in early June. A digital edition only.

Books 4, 5 & 6 should all be out by the end of 2019 with a second series planned.


* “He is our county's leading writer in this field, and with 'The Triggerstone' he's at his best”

     – William Taylor, cira 1994.

** Originally released 2014 as “Into the Storm's Domain” by now-defunct Satalyte Books. Print-edition paperbacks can still be found. Already a rare book.


Thursday, April 11, 2019



PO Box 36652, Northcote, Auckland, 0748

Press Release 5 April 2019

Renowned Professor to judge $1000 poetry prize
International Writers' Workshop NZ Inc (IWW) is delighted to announce that

Professor Bryan Walpert, who teaches English and Creative Writing at Massey

University in Auckland and was a co-judge of the 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book

Awards Poetry Award, will judge The Kathleen Grattan Prize for a Sequence of Poems

later this year.

The prize of $1000, which is made possible due to an ongoing bequest from the

Jocelyn Grattan Charitable Trust, is for a cycle or sequence of unpublished poems

that has a common link or theme.

This is the eleventh year IWW has had the honour of organising the Prize.

Previous winners are Heather Bauchop (2018), Janet Newman (2017), Michael

Giacon (2016) Maris O’Rourke (2015), Julie Ryan (2014), Belinda Diepenheim

(2013), James Norcliffe (2012), Jillian Sullivan (2011) Janet Charman and Rosetta

Allan (joint winners 2010) and Alice Hooton (2009).

The Kathleen Grattan Prize for a Sequence of Poems is sometimes referred to as the

'Little Grattan' as the Jocelyn Grattan Charitable Trust also funds the biennial

Kathleen Grattan Award, run by Landfall / Otago University Press.

The competition is free for IWW members to enter but it is very easy for aspiring

poets and writers to join IWW to be eligible to enter their poetry into the Prize.

About the Judge

Professor Walpert is the author of three

collections of poetry, Etymology (Cinnamon

Press), A History of Glass (Stephen F. Austin

State UP), and most recently Native Bird

(Makaro Press); a collection of short fiction,

Ephraim’s Eyes; and two scholarly books: Poetry

and Mindfulness: Interruption to a Journey

(Palgrave 2017) and Resistance to Science in

Contemporary American Poetry (Routledge 2011).

His work has appeared in many countries and

has been recognised by the Montreal

International Poetry Award, the New Zealand

International Poetry Competition and the James

Wright Poetry Award (U.S.).

His website is

Preparatory Workshop

Professor Walpert will conduct a workshop on Writing Poetry Sequences at IWW’s

meeting venue, the Lindisfarne Room under St Aidans Church, 97 Onewa Road,

Northcote, Auckland on Tuesday 21 May. Doors open at 10 am and the workshop

runs from 10.30 am to 12.30 pm.

While the competition is restricted to IWW members, visitors are welcome to attend

the workshop for a $10 visitor fee. Any visitor who attends the workshop and joins

IWW by the third Tuesday in June will be eligible to enter The Kathleen Grattan

Prize for a Sequence of Poems and will have the visitor fee deducted from their

joining fee.

About the Competition and about IWW

The rules for the competition, details of how to join IWW, meeting times and other

activities of the workshop, which meets on the first and third Tuesdays of the

month from February to November and runs several competitions a year, are

available from the IWW website:

Key Dates for The Kathleen Grattan Prize for a Sequence of Poems in 2019

21 May: Workshop with Professor Bryan Walpert on writing poetry sequences.

18 June: Last day for new members to join IWW to be eligible to enter this year’s


1 October: Closing date for entries.

19 November: Announcement of the 2019 winner of The Kathleen Grattan Prize for

a Sequence of Poems.


For further information about the Prize or about IWW in general, contact Sue

Courtney, email or check out our website