NZSA WebWorkshops – A series of webinars to enable ongoing professional development

This series kicked off with some workshops we had planned for the NZSA National Writer’s Forum 2020 and features writers and industry professionals offering virtual workshops on topics such as self-publishing, romance writing, poetry, structure, short stories, pitching, contract advice, dystopian writing and the business of writing.

All WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download 

Learn more about what to expect in a WebWorkshop in this article from the NZ Author magazine – Spring 2020.


 

Getting through the hoops – with Siobhan Harvey, Geoff Walker, and Geraldine Warren

10am to 12pm, Thursday 29 October

There are many awards, grants, residencies, mentorships and competitions available to New Zealand writers, here and overseas but sometimes it can seem really hard to achieve success in this space.

In this panel discussion, Geoff Walker, Geraldine Warren and Siobhan Harvey will share their experience reviewing work for writing competitions, research awards, mentor and assessment programmes for the NZSA and other writer-centric awards and programmes. Participants are encouraged to bring questions. Please note that the session will be focused on how to improve applications and not what opportunities are available (This information is on the NZSA website).

Geoff Walker is active in New Zealand book publishing as a freelance publishing consultant, editor and writer. He is one of New Zealand’s most experienced publishers and editors. Geoff is a former publishing director of Penguin New Zealand, where he was responsible for building Penguin’s local publishing list over a period of several decades. As a consultant Geoff assesses original manuscripts and offers expert advice on writing, rewriting and editing. He also advises on the best way to publish. Geoff regularly participates in NZSA’s mentoring and manuscript assessment services.

Geraldine Warren is Māori Resources & Mātauranga Advisor at Auckland War Memorial Museum. She holds a MLIS (2006) and MCW (2019) from VUW, Wellington. Her mahi at AWMM in various roles have included cataloguer, collection care, research, writing, World War-Pakanga, rare books, manuscripts, whakapapa/family history and deepening information on Wahine Maori. She was lead researcher for the museum for the UNESCO NZ Inscription ‘A Korao no New Zealand’. Other professional writing or contributions includes: Coastwatchers, Early Maori Literacy, ‘Front-page news: a mystery hui’ and ‘Poetry Shelf connections: much-loved comfort book list by 19 New Zealanders’. Geraldine has also participated on AWMM selection panels for the Sir Hugh Kawharu scholarship and Online Cenotaph Stories: Contemporary Reflections Grant.

Siobhan Harvey is a migrant author of five books, including the poetry collection, ‘Cloudboy’ (Otago University Press, 2014), which won New Zealand richest prize for poetry, the Landfall Kathleen Grattan Award. She’s also co-editor of the New Zealand bestseller, ‘Essential New Zealand Poems’ (Penguin Random House, 2014). Her work has been published in ‘Arc’ (Canada), ‘Asian Literary Review’ (Hong Kong), ‘Griffith Review’ (Aus), ‘Segue’ (US), ‘Stand’ (UK), and ‘Structo’ (UK), as well as the anthology ‘Feminist Divine: Voices of Power and Invisibility’ (Cyren US, 2019). She won 2019 Kathleen Grattan Award for a Sequence of Poems, 2019 Robert Burns Poetry Prize, and 2016 Write Well Award (Fiction, US). She was runner-up in the 2011 Landfall Essay Competition and 2015 and 2014 New Zealand Poetry Society International Poetry Competitions. The Poetry Archive (UK) holds a ‘Poet’s Page’ devoted to her work.

NZSA Members – $30
Non-members – $60

BOOK IN

Once you have signed up and made payment, you will be booked into this WebWorkshop. Attendees will be sent a Zoom videoconference invitation 1 day before the webinar.

Using Zoom for the first time? We will issue instructions along with the link to the event.

Not a member of NZSA? Find out more about the benefits of membership.


Making author life work for you – with James Russell

10am to 11.30am, Wednesday 4 November

In this interactive session, children’s author and indie publisher James Russell will share tips on how to make a living from the sale of your books based on his success with his Dragon Brothers series in New Zealand and overseas.

James Russell is a bestselling children’s writer and indie publisher. His books have sold over 100,000 copies and have been published in eight countries. The author of the self-published Dragon Brothers trilogy: The Dragon Hunters (2012), The Dragon Tamers (2013) and The Dragon Riders (2014), Russell has also published five Dragon Defenders junior novels. An innovator and augmented reality (AR) enthusiast, Russell’s publications use AR technology to bring three-dimensional ‘magic’ to his books. He lives in Auckland with his family.

NZSA Members – $30
Non-members – $60

BOOK IN

Once you have signed up and made payment, you will be booked into this WebWorkshop. Attendees will be sent a Zoom videoconference invitation 1 day before the webinar.

Using Zoom for the first time? We will issue instructions along with the link to the event.

Not a member of NZSA? Find out more about the benefits of membership.


Psychology for Writers – with Darian Smith

10am to 12pm, Saturday 21 November

Writers know their characters need to be fully rounded, multi-layered, and believable but how do we do it? This session will cover a variety of theories used by counsellors and psychologists to understand human behaviour and adapt them into easy tools for writers to use when creating their characters. Darian Smith, author of “The Psychology Workbook for Writers: Tools for Creating Realistic Characters and Conflict in Fiction” will cover topics such as internalised messages, communication, conflict styles, and relationships, with a focus on how to bring this layered approach into your writing and ensure your characters don’t come across paper-thin!

Darian Smith is an award winning fiction writer with a degree in psychology. As the author of the ‘Agents of Kalanon’ series, he has won a Sir Julius Vogel Award, two Koru Awards, and was a finalist for the international fantasy book competition known as SPFBO. As a member of the NZ Association of Counsellors, he has worked in private practice as a counsellor and family therapist, set up a free counselling service at his local Citizens Advice Bureau, and helps people with neuromuscular conditions through the Muscular Dystrophy Association. He combines these two sides of his background to provide simple, easy to follow tools that make use of established psychological theory to help writers develop fully rounded, interesting, realistic characters and inject conflict into their stories.

NZSA Members – $30
Non-members – $60

BOOK IN

Once you have signed up and made payment, you will be booked into this WebWorkshop. Attendees will be sent a Zoom videoconference invitation 1 day before the webinar.

Using Zoom for the first time? We will issue instructions along with the link to the event.

Not a member of NZSA? Find out more about the benefits of membership.


Past WebWorkshops


Poetry’s Bare Essentials – with David Eggleton

In this two hour workshop we’ll be creating new poems about what matters to you in a time of crisis, paying attention to voice, tone, language and technique, and to where you are right now.

David Eggleton edited Landfall and Landfall Review Online between 2010 and 2018. He is a recent recipient of a Janet Frame Literary Trust Award, an Ockham New Zealand Book Award for Poetry, and the Prime Minister’s Award for Poetry. He has had eight collections of poetry published. His most recent poetry publication, Edgeland and other poems, was published by Otago University Press in 2018. He is the New Zealand Poet Laureate 2019 – 2021.

 

 

 

 


The Business of Writing – with Nalini Singh

In this Q & A, New York Times Best Selling author of paranormal romance and full time writer, Nalini Singh answers your questions about how to make a living from writing including everything from publishing, subrights, diverse income streams, contracting and more. You can submit questions before and during the session.

Nalini Singh is the New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and international bestselling author of the Psy-Changeling, Guild Hunter, Rock Kiss, and Hard Play series. She also recently released her first thriller – set on New Zealand’s rugged West Coast. Born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand, she was first published in 2003. Her books have sold over seven million copies worldwide and have been translated into more than twenty languages, including German, French, Japanese, and Turkish. Her current new releases are: Archangel’s War, A Madness of Sunshine, and Love Hard. Her next release is Alpha Night (June 2020).

Starting Right: Drawing Readers into your World – with Bren MacDibble

Is the opening of your novel bogged down by world building and exposition? Science fiction is all about getting the reader to trust your main characters early so they can act as believable guides. Tune in for a live chat with Bren MacDibble and learn techniques you can use to draw readers into your science fiction world. Q and A session also.

Bren MacDibble writes action packed novels for children, and for young adults as Cally Black. Her books have won multiple awards in New Zealand and overseas and deal with futures forever changed by environmental issues. Bren hopes that by exploring change in fiction, young readers will have a safe context in which to talk about current issues. Bren was raised in New Zealand and moved to Australia in her late 20s, first to Melbourne, and recently after a couple of years of driving around Australia in a bus, has hunkered down in the west coast town of Kalbarri to ride out the Covid storm.


From the First Sentence: A Workshop on Crime Writing – with Paddy Richardson

12pm to 2pm, 11 June

‘It was a wrong number that started it, the telephone ringing three times in the dead of night, and the voice on the other end asking for someone he was not.’ Paul Auster, City of Glass From the first sentence, a crime novel has to generate intrigue, tension and conflict. This 2 hour workshop will explore the creation of plot, pace and structure in crime writing. Questions can be submitted before and during the session.

Paddy Richardson is the author of two collections of short stories and seven novels. Four of her crime novels have been published overseas and her most recent historical novel, ‘Through the Lonesome Dark’ was shortlisted for the New Zealand Historical Novel Award and longlisted for The Dublin International Literature Award. Paddy has been awarded four Creative New Zealand Awards, the University of Otago Burns Fellowship, the Beatson Fellowship, the James Wallace Arts Trust Residency Award and the Randell Cottage Residency. Her novels ‘Traces of Red’ and ‘Cross Fingers’ have been long-listed for the Ngaio Marsh Award and ‘Hunting Blind’ and ‘Swimming in the Dark’, short-listed. She is an experienced teacher of creative writing, has been a speaker at many writing festivals, is a mentor for the NZSA Creative Writing Programmes and has judged many awards.


Introduction to Flash Fiction: The what, why and when of it – with Michelle Elvy

2pm to 4pm, 18 June

This is a class for people interested in discovering the craft of writing small. In writing 250-500 words, you’ll stimulate your creativity, pay attention to language and think in new ways about structure and story. You might blend poetry and prose; you might push yourself towards experimentation; you might write a small moment, or a whole world. All welcome. Discover the what, why and when of flash fiction with Michelle Elvy.

Michelle Elvy is a writer, editor and manuscript assessor based in Dunedin. You can find her teaching online at ’52|250 A Year of Writing’, or at ‘Flash Frontier: An Adventure in Short Fiction’, ‘Best Small Fictions’ and National Flash Fiction Day. She is co-editor of ‘Bonsai: Best small stories from Aotearoa New Zealand’ (CUP 2018) and ‘Ko Aotearoa Tātou | We Are New Zealand’ (OUP 2020). Her book, ‘the everrumble’ (Ad Hoc Fiction, 2019) is a small novel in small forms. michelleelvy.com

 

 

Ethical Storytelling – with Pip Desmond

10am to 12pm, 8 July

Writing creative non-fiction poses unique ethical challenges. In this workshop, we’ll explore the courage it takes to write about real people, the place for compassion, and ways to manage the tension between the two. We’ll also look at how to tell the truth while still telling a gripping story. You are welcome to send questions in advance to be answered during the session.

Pip Desmond is an award-winning writer of creative non-fiction. ‘Trust: A True Story of Women and Gangs’ won Best First Book at the 2010 New Zealand Post Book Awards and her latest memoir, ‘Song for Rosaleen’, was longlisted for the 2019 Ockham Book Awards. She has also written ‘The War That Never Ended: New Zealand Veterans Remember Korea’. Pip has a background as an oral historian, journalist and parliamentary press secretary. She was Massey University’s 2019 writer in residence. Her TEDx talk on ethical storytelling can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHR8fWAr43k

 

 

Picture Book Magic – with Kyle Mewburn

2pm to 4pm, 22 July

There are as many ways to write a picture book as to tame a dragon. This workshop will unravel my personal process for writing picture books that spellbind kids and parents alike. It will cover key aspects such as creating hooks, boosting re-readability and weaving themes which resonate with young readers.

Kyle Mewburn is one of New Zealand’s most eclectic and prolific writers. From multi-layered picture books to laugh-out-loud junior fiction series, her titles have been translated into eighteen languages and won numerous awards including Children’s Book of the Year. She was Children’s Writer-in-Residence at Otago University in 2011 and President of the New Zealand Society of Authors from 2013-2017. Originally from Brisbane, Kyle lives with her wife, Marion, two cats and 24 chickens, in a house with a grass roof near the sleepy village of Millers Flat. When she’s not writing she’s either searching for hidden eggs or exploring the exciting world she discovered in her closet. www.kylemewburn.com

 


Novel 101 – with Paula Morris

10am to 12pm, Saturday, 8 August

Explore the key concerns of the novelist, including point of view, narrative scope, and characters creating story, in this craft-focused interactive seminar.Note: Within the class I will discuss the narrative structures of three novels in particular, so if participants have time to read them in advance, that may be useful for them (though it’s not necessary): ‘The Remains of the Day’ by Kazuo Ishiguro; ‘Bright Lights, Big City’ by Jay McInerney; and ‘The English Patient’ by Michael Ondaatje.

Paula Morris (Ngāti Wai, Ngāti Whatua) was born in Auckland in 1965. She is the award-winning author of short stories, essays and novels, including ‘Rangatira’ (2011) and ‘False River’ (2017), and convenes the Master of Creative Writing programme at the University of Auckland. Paula sits on the Māori Literature Trust, Mātātuhi Foundation, and NZ Book Awards Trust, and is the founder of the Academy of New Zealand Literature (www.anzliterature.com). Appointed an MZNM in the 2019 New Year Honours, she has appeared in festivals around and world and been awarded numerous residencies, including the 2019 Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellowship.


Poetry Masterclass – with Siobhan Harvey

10am to 12pm, Thursday, 27 August

This two hour advanced workshop will engage you with poetic language, form, editing and writing techniques. Come prepared to undertake writing exercises, discuss sample poems and share your writings All budding, secret and serious poets welcome.

Siobhan Harvey is a migrant author of five books, including the poetry collection, ‘Cloudboy’ (Otago University Press, 2014), which won New Zealand richest prize for poetry, the Landfall Kathleen Grattan Award. She’s also co-editor of the New Zealand bestseller, ‘Essential New Zealand Poems’ (Penguin Random House, 2014). Her work has been published in ‘Arc’ (Canada), ‘Asian Literary Review’ (Hong Kong), ‘Griffith Review’ (Aus), ‘Segue’ (US), ‘Stand’ (UK), and ‘Structo’ (UK), as well as the anthology ‘Feminist Divine: Voices of Power and Invisibility’ (Cyren US, 2019). She won 2019 Kathleen Grattan Award for a Sequence of Poems, 2019 Robert Burns Poetry Prize, and 2016 Write Well Award (Fiction, US). She was runner-up in the 2011 Landfall Essay Competition and 2015 and 2014 New Zealand Poetry Society International Poetry Competitions. The Poetry Archive (UK) holds a ‘Poet’s Page’ devoted to her work.


The short story: character, setting, voice – with Catherine Chidgey

10am to 12.30pm, Wednesday, 2 September

This workshop guides you through a range of bespoke writing exercises in order to generate the raw material for a short story. First you will identify a character and begin to flesh them out through consideration of a central desire as well as a problem or obstacle they must face. You will then create a three-dimensional setting in which to place your character. Finally, you will be encouraged to find your character’s authentic voice by placing them in a dialogue.

Catherine Chidgey is a multiple award-winner whose novels have attracted international acclaim. ‘In a Fishbone Church’ won Best First Book at both the New Zealand Book Awards and the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize (South-East Asia and South Pacific region). It also won the Betty Trask Award (UK), and was longlisted for the Orange Prize. ‘Golden Deeds’ was a Best Book in the LA Times Book Review and a Notable Book in the New York Times Book Review. ‘The Wish Child’ won the 2017 Acorn Foundation Fiction Prize – the country’s richest writing prize. Radio New Zealand called it ‘a brilliant, brilliant novel…a masterpiece’, and The Times (UK) ‘a remarkable book with a stunningly original twist’. Other honours include the Katherine Mansfield Short Story Award, the $60,000 Prize in Modern Letters, the Janet Frame Fiction Prize and a shortlisting for the 2020 Commonwealth Short Story Prize. Catherine released her first children’s book, ‘Jiffy, Cat Detective’ in 2019. She teaches creative writing at the University of Waikato, where she initiated the Sargeson Prize in 2019 – the country’s richest short story prize. Her sixth novel, ‘Remote Sympathy’, is due out in October.


Writing as Manaakitanga – with Whiti Hereaka

10am to 12pm, Wednesday, 16 September

Story exists in the space between the teller and the audience. Learn how to create space in your writing that is both welcoming and challenging to your reader.

Whiti Hereaka is an award-winning novelist and playwright of Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Te Arawa and Pākehā descent, based in Wellington. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing (Scriptwriting) from the International Institute of Modern Letters. She is the author of three novels: ‘The Graphologist’s Apprentice’, the award-winning YA novels ‘Bugs’ and ‘Legacy’. She is also co-editor, with Witi Ihimaera, of ‘Pūrākau’. Whiti has been involved with Te Papa Tupu, an incubator programme for Māori writers, as a writer, a mentor and a judge. She is also a board member of the Māori Literature Trust and the Michael King Writers Centre. Whiti teaches Writing for the Young at the IIML.

 

 


Who Are You? Tina Shaw on Creating a Successful Protagonist

10am to 12pm, Tuesday 6 October

Stories are all about characters – what they do, what they think and how they feel. Whether you’re writing YA or for adults, a successful lead character is the key to engaging your readers. In this workshop we will look at ways to bring your protagonist to life on the page.

Tina Shaw is the author of publications for children, young adults and general readership, including ‘The Black Madonna’, written while she held the CNZ Berlin Writers’ Residency, and ‘The Children’s Pond’, shortlisted for the 2015 Ngaio Marsh Awards. She has also held the University of Waikato Writer-In-Residence and the Buddle Findlay Sargeson Fellowship. She won the 2018 Storylines Tessa Duder Award with ‘Ursa’ which was published in 2019 by Walker Books Australia and has received a 2020 Storylines Notable Book Award. Her latest novel, ‘Ephemera’ (Cloud Ink Press), features a quirky ephemera librarian who undertakes a perilous journey up the Waikato River.