New Zealand Society of Authors / Auckland Museum Research Grants – Recipients Announced 

The New Zealand Society of Authors (NZSA) and Auckland War Memorial Museum are delighted to announce the recipients of the NZSA Auckland Museum National and Auckland Regional Grants.

The National Grant goes to Marlborough writer Joan Norlev Taylor whose winning proposal focuses on articles and books relating to the lives of European settlers particularly women in the 1860s.

Joan will receive a $4,000 grant and one month’s accommodation at The Michael King Writers Centre in Devonport while she undertakes her research next year. Joan Norlev Taylor’s creative writing (prose and poetry) is wide-ranging, spanning diverse genres, and has been published in the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand. Her most recent novel, Napoleon’s Willow, appeared in 2016 (RSVP, Auckland).

The judging panel said “The calibre of all applicants was very high and it was exciting to read such good writing with each of the applications. Of course this did make the job of the Selection Panel more difficult but finally the two recipients were agreed upon”.

The Auckland Regional grant of $2,500 has been awarded to Auckland writer Geoff Allen. His winning proposal involves researching the New Zealand Land Wars and will use the museum library collection widely. Geoff says of his work: I started out as an artist then worked in theatre and film as an actor. In 2000 I was studying writing at Whitireia Polytechnic and working on Lord of the Rings by night. It was on set that I had an epiphany about myths and legends. How stories moved around the world when their people moved. How they spoke about that culture – even when their people did not. It has set me on a journey of learning Te Reo and about Te Ao Maori; and learning about being Pakeha.

Now in its sixth year, the NZSA / Auckland Museum National and Auckland Region Grants are a wonderful opportunity for writers to develop a manuscript thanks to a stipend, guided access to the Museum’s documentary heritage collections and (for the National Grant award) four weeks accommodation at The Michael King Writers Centre.

“Auckland Museum is pleased to work with The NZSA to provide support to New Zealand writers and provide access to our research library, where thousands of historical books, manuscripts, newspapers, maps, journals and photographs are available to the authors, to inspire their writing and provide factual information,” says Adam Moriarty, Acting Head of Information, Library and Enquiry Services at Auckland Museum.

Past award winners have included historical novelists, archaeologists, biographers and recently a scriptwriter/playwright researching the earliest interaction of Pakeha and Māori for public performance.

Images: (from top to bottom) , Joan Norlev Taylor, Geoff Allen

For further information and for media enquiries: Claire Hill, Operations Manager 09 3794801 office@nzauthors.org.nz

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