National Writers Forum – exploring the art, issues and business of writing

Patricia Grace, Nalini Singh, Ockham award-winner Stephen Daisley and Canadian writer Kate Pullinger are just some of the writers so far announced as participants in the inaugural National Writers Forum taking place on 17 – 18 September. They will be joined by publishers, agents, editors, festival directors and a range of other industry professionals from New Zealand and overseas.

‘The National Writers Forum is about sharing opportunities and knowledge,’ says Jackie Dennis, Chief Executive Officer of New Zealand Society of Authors, which is organising the event. ‘We’re bringing together a community of writers and publishers from around the world and addressing issues of concern, from copyright reversion to freedom of expression.’

Mid career writers, says Dennis, ‘will learn how to better negotiate the ever-changing publishing industry, while up and coming writers will learn from masters of their craft.’

Programme manager Claire Mabey believes that ‘writers at all levels are going to find this weekend hugely valuable. A range of workshops, masterclasses, panel discussions, in-conversations and keynote speeches are being carefully developed to cover a wide range of subjects from publishing to copyright to craft.’

‘The programme is being built around the core values of community, information and inspiration’, says Mabey. The NWF will feature targeted events for writers across many different genres – including crime, sci-fi and fantasy, and historical fiction.

A highlight of the weekend will be the announcement of the new Copyright Licensing New Zealand Award. New Zealand non-fiction writers of all genres are being asked to apply by 23 June, with the winner receiving $25,000 to enable them to devote time to their writing project.

In the inaugural NWF debate some of the sharpest minds in the country will battle through words and wit the proposition that New Zealand books need special treatment. Toby Manhire, Michele A’Court and Paula Morris will be moderated by Te Radar.

The programme will be announced by mid-July, when tickets go on sale, available from and iTICKET. Some of the sessions will have limited numbers on a first come first served basis so writers are encouraged to book early to avoid disappointment. Early bird tickets will be available for as little as $235; full price on the day will be $320. Venue is the Owen G Glenn Building at the University of Auckland.

The National Writers Forum is supported by Creative New Zealand, CLNZ Cultural Fund, University of Auckland, South Pacific Pictures, and New Zealand Society of Authors.


About the programme: Claire Mabey

About sponsoring and exhibiting: Jackie Dennis

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