“I thought, I’ve got to [join NZSA], this is a chance to actually stand up and say to myself, ‘I am a writer, I’m involved in the Society’…”
Season 4 of the NZSA Oral History podcast continues with Barbara Else, in the first of two episodes from her 2020 oral history interview with Naomi Arnold.
Barbara has written for the stage and the page, for children and for adults, and has also worked as a literary agent, editor and fiction consultant. She has held fellowships and scholarships throughout her career, was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit, and was awarded the Margaret Mahy Medal, both in recognition of her services to literature. Whatever genre and whatever audience, Barbara has a reputation as a writer of wit and humour. In part 1 of her interview, Barbara talks with Naomi Arnold about finding her gift for humour during the writing of her first plays, developing as a writer, the success of her first novel The Warrior Queen and the opportunities which followed.
Part 2 will be released in a fortnight so ensure you subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss it!
Barbara’s episode is accompanied by a beautiful photo portrait of the writer taken by Naomi Arnold and is hosted by New Zealand broadcaster, NZSA member and author Karyn Hay.
This is the fourth season of the NZSA Oral History Podcasts, using interviews with New Zealand writers that NZSA began recording in the 1990’s. You can listen to all past episodes from our writers, some of whom are no longer with us, on our website, Google, Spotify, Soundcloud, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you listen (search ‘NZ Society of Authors’).
NZSA would like to thank The Southern Trust for funding this season, and also UNESCO and the Otago Community Trust for the funding to record new oral histories with authors based in Otago.