Quick Questions with Barbara Else – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Barbara Else MNZM is an award-winning author who also works as a manuscript assessor. She has held university fellowships and was awarded the Margaret Mahy Medal for services to children’s literature. Her latest book is Go Girl – A Storybook of Epic NZ Women.

Barbara Else. Photo credit: Caroline Davies
Barbara Else. Photo credit: Caroline Davies

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

I’m longing to see the Art Gallery

What do you think about libraries?

Libraries are treasure houses, and school librarians in particular are guardian angels.

What would be your desert island book?

My desert island book – can I just take a library?

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

A surprising fact about me? When I was little I used to borrow a particular library book again and again even though I had my own copy at home. (The Five Chinese Brothers)

Barbara Else’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Margaret Mahy Lecture – Barbara Else: Go Girl Saturday 1 September 10am

Quick Questions with Megan Dunn – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Megan Dunn writes about mermaids and contemporary New Zealand art. Her first book, Tinderbox, is about the end of Borders bookstores, Ray Bradbury and Julie Christie’s hair. But not necessarily in that order.

Megan Dunn. Image supplied.
Megan Dunn. Image supplied.

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

Whale watching with author of Leviathan, Philip Hoare. I’ll have what’s he having. Lately, I’ve been speaking to so many mermaids whose lives have been transformed by swimming with whales. But I am no mermaid, more of a big chicken. However, this is an unmissable opportunity to see whales with an expert and to try and move physically and psychologically closer to the power of the sea and our place within it.

What do you think about libraries?

I think what Ray Bradbury thinks: ‘Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.’

What would be your desert island book?

Tough call. It’s gotta be the one I’d write in the sand with a stick. I hope Wilson will like it.

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

I don’t eat fish.

Megan Dunn’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

You write funny! Friday 31 August 5.30pm FREE

Mortification Saturday 1 September 5.30pm

Quick Questions with Catherine Chidgey – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Catherine Chidgey’s novels have been published to international acclaim. The Wish Child won the 2016 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize and Golden Deeds was a  Los Angeles Times book of the year. Chidgey was awarded the 2017 Janet Frame Fiction Prize.

Catherine Chidgey. Photo credit: Helen Mayall
Catherine Chidgey. Photo credit: Helen Mayall

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

Catching up with the Chidgey cousins.

What do you think about libraries?

They are adventure playgrounds, churches, sweet shops, universities, cruise ships, refuges, time machines…

CoverWhat would be your desert island book?

Wuthering Heights.

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

My second and third toes are ever-so-slightly webbed.

Catherine Chidgey’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Catherine Chidgey: Transformations Friday 31 August 10am

Catherine Chidgey: Through the senses workshop Friday 31 August 12.30pm

Quick Questions with Hera Lindsay Bird – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Hera Lindsay Bird is a writer from Wellington. Her first book, Hera Lindsay Bird, won the 2017 Jessie Mackay Prize for Best First Book. Her second, Pamper Me To Hell & Back, is published this year.

Hera Lindsay Bird. Photo credit: Russell Kleyn
Hera Lindsay Bird. Photo credit: Russell Kleyn

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

In Christchurch I am looking forward to seeing everyone I know in Wellington in Christchurch. I don’t know! I haven’t been to Christchurch since I was 11 and I stayed in a terrifying house full of taxidermied animals on a school exchange. Someone tell me where to go, please. Otherwise I will be at back to back festival events!

What do you think about libraries?

 

Libraries are dangerous & elitist cultural echo chambers which should all be burned to the ground. Just kidding. I love libraries obviously, I’m not a monster. Sadly I can never go to them because I still have too many fines from the time I worked at the library but still somehow forgot to return my books.

CoverWhat would be your desert island book?

Tactically it would make the most sense to bring something like Proust or Shakespeare so you wouldn’t run out of material as fast, but since this is a hypothetical question I’d probably bring P G Wodehouse.

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

My dad won Sale of the Century when I was a kid. I don’t know if that’s surprising or about me, but I’m not working with much.

Hera Lindsay Bird’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Poetry life hacks Friday 31 August 3.30pm SOLD OUT

The Neu! Ōtautahi Incident Saturday 1 September 7.30pm

Hollie McNish and Hera Lindsay Bird: Poetry stars Sunday 2 September 4.15pm

Quick Questions with Nathan Fa’avae – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Nathan Fa’avae has been a top adventure athlete for 20 years. He has captained the New Zealand Adventure Racing team to five world championship victories.

Nathan Fa'avae. Image supplied.
Nathan Fa’avae. Image supplied.

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

Going for a run on the Port Hills, coffee at C4, being part of Word.

What do you think about libraries?

I think libraries are vaults of spectacular opulence, texts to another dimension.

What would be your desert island book?

How to Survive on a Deserted Island by Tim O’Shei.

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

I’ve never owned a TV.

Nathan Fa’avae’s session at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Adventurers at heart Thursday 30 August 7.30pm SOLD OUT

Quick Questions with Charlotte Graham-McLay – WORD Christchurch

We are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Charlotte Graham-McLay is a journalist and broadcaster from Wellington. Her reporting and reviews appear in The New York Times, Vice, New Zealand Geographic, Landfall, The Spinoff, and on Radio New Zealand. Charlotte has a Masters in Journalism from Massey University.

Charlotte Graham-McLay. Photo credit: Guy Ryan
Charlotte Graham-McLay. Photo credit: Guy Ryan

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

Christchurch holds formative memories as the place where I studied, made enjoyable teenage mistakes and started out as a junior reporter, so I love coming back. As well as seeing as many WORD Christchurch sessions as I can catch in a weekend and saying hello to writers I only get to see at festivals, I plan to hang out at C1 and wander the central city to see what has sprung up since I was last there. The places I lived and worked are all gone now, which is unsettling, but I’m always curious to see what is happening in those spots.

What do you think about libraries?

Libraries are fantastic and essential. I spent many happy lunchtimes among the shelves as a nerdy school kid, reading books thoroughly inappropriate for my age group and learning things about the world that have shaped and informed my beliefs to this day. I’m 32 now and I’m still at the library all the time. I don’t think people know half the stuff they offer! You can request books they don’t already have and the librarians will order a copy for you to borrow. Plus, my local library has signs up now saying it’s ok to eat there, so I still eat my lunch at the library a lot because I’m a freelance journalist with no office and I can’t afford cafes. Bless librarians! They know what people need.

What would be your desert island book?

Sometimes when I feel like I’ve forgotten what I think good writing sounds like, I start reading any essay from Can You Tolerate This? by Ashleigh Young, and within few paragraphs I remember. If I can pick another, it’s been such a joy to revisit Denise Mina’s novels ahead of our WORD Christchurch session. Two of her characters especially – Maureen O’Donnell and Paddy Meehan – gave me those rare experiences as a young woman of feeling seen and understood through a fictional character. I could read those books umpteen times.

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Share a surprising fact about yourself.

Before I ever started reporting or writing anything, I thought I was going to be a professional dancer. My skills aren’t what they used to be, but I can still land a double pirouette!

Charlotte Graham-McLay’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

The Body Issue Saturday 1 September 5.30pm

Denise Mina: Bloody Scotland Sunday 2 September 10am

Quick Questions with Miriama Kamo – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Miriama Kamo is a broadcast journalist who presents the current affairs programmes Sunday and Marae on TVNZ 1. She’s a Cantabrian, a mother and a writer.

Miriama Kamo. Image supplied.
Miriama Kamo. Image supplied.

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

I’m a Cantabrian so I love coming home to Christchurch. I have family and friends there. I love Birdlings Flat and Little River – my fave destinations. Closer to town, I’m loving the way Christchurch is reshaping itself. The cafes and shopping are fantastic, loving The Colombo and The Tannery.

What do you think about libraries?

I have used libraries since I was tiny. They’re home to worlds and worlds and worlds. I remember Sister MaryAnn at my primary school giving me my first school library card and being in heaven. And, on the way home, I’d stop in New Brighton Library to borrow as many books as I was allowed.  My husband and I often take our 7 year old to the libraries in Auckland.

CoverWhat would be your desert island book?

Lordy, i really don’t know, I’m not keen on re-reading books, only because there are so many good books to read. I have read The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion three times though, so perhaps that..

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

Perhaps that I rarely drive a car – i use an e-bike to get around, it’s the best fun ever

Miriama Kamo’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Embracing Te Reo Sunday 2 September 10am

The Stolen Stars of Matariki Sunday 2 September 11.45am

Adventurous Women Sunday 2 September 6pm

Quick Questions with Victor Rodger – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Victor Rodger is an award-winning playwright of Samoan and Scottish descent, best known for his play, Black Faggot. Last year his short story, ‘Like Shinderella’, was published in the Maori/Pasefika anthology Black Marks on the White Page.

Victor Rodger. Image supplied.
Victor Rodger. Image supplied.

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

Going to Vanilla Ices if it’s open!

What do you think about libraries?

They always contain treasure.

What would be your desert island book?

A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole or The Road by Cormac McCarthy.

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Share a surprising fact about yourself.

I bunked off school to go meet Lauren Bacall when I was a young fella at Linwood North.

Victor Rodger’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Comfortable in your skin Friday 31 August 6pm

Black Marks on the White Page: A Roundtable Saturday 1 September 10.30am

The Sex and Death Salon Saturday 1 September 10pm

Quick Questions with Emily Writes – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Emily Writes is the best-selling author of Rants in the Dark: From one tired mama to another and her new collection, Is it Bedtime Yet?. A mother of two, she is editor of The Spinoff Parents.

Emily Writes. Photo credit: Chris Tse
Emily Writes. Photo credit: Chris Tse

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

I absolutely love Christchurch! I’m really looking forward to checking out some local businesses. Last time I came I went to The Tannery and I only managed to get around half the shops so I’m keen to go back there. I also want to head back to Scorpio Books they hosted an event for my first book and they were so lovely.

What do you think about libraries?

I love libraries. Growing up librarians were like mothers to me. The local librarians and the school librarian nurtured my interests, kept me safe, encouraged me and supported me. Libraries have always felt like homes away from home to me.

What would be your desert island book?

Probably He’s So MASC by Chris Tse because it makes me think of friends and love and passion and family and my community.

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

I don’t know if it’s surprising or just obvious but I got a C in journalism at high school because I couldn’t meet deadlines and I kept inserting myself into my writing (I was often told I was “not Hunter S. Thompson”).

Emily Writes’ sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018

Bad Diaries Salon: #Risk Friday 31 August 10pm

Motherhood Saturday 1 September 11.30am

 

Quick Questions with Nicky Pellegrino – WORD Christchurch

CoverWe are asking quick questions of writers and thinkers coming to the WORD Christchurch Festival 2018 (Wednesday 29 August to Sunday 2 September).

Nicky Pellegrino is the author of 10 best-selling novels. She juggles writing fiction with a career as a journalist, regularly contributing to magazines including the Listener and the New Zealand Woman’s Weekly.

Nicky Pellegrino. Image supplied.
Nicky Pellegrino. Image supplied.

What are you looking forward to doing in Christchurch?

I’m hoping I’ll find time for a walk in the Botanic Gardens. And to eat a lot of delicious things.

What do you think about libraries?

They were my lifeline when I was a kid and my best friends were books.

What would be your desert island book?

To The Bright Edge Of The World by Eowyn Ivey because it would remind me how it felt to be cold.

To the Bright Edge of the World

Share a surprising fact about yourself.

I can touch my nose with my tongue.

Nicky Pellegrino’s sessions at WORD Christchurch Festival 2018:

High tea and Tales Thursday 30 August 2pm