Tessa Duder talks courage, action and sorrow on the NZSA Oral History Podcast Series

 “…sometimes we just feel that if we poke our head above the parapet we will personally pay a price…”


The second episode of the NZSA Oral History Podcast Season 3 features part two of an interview with renown author Tessa Duder.

Tessa has published fiction and non-fiction for children and adults both in New Zealand and overseas. Tessa’s best known work is the Alex quartet about a young female competitive swimmer who struggles to succeed in swimming, school, love and life. The first book was adapted into a movie in 1993 and the quartet  was recently republished by OneTree House.

In the last episode, Tessa talked with Deborah Shepard about Tessa’s journey from a cub-reporter to famous novelist and the people who helped and inspired her along the way. This time they focus in on Tessa’s involvement  in the New Zealand Society of Authors and in the Storylines Children’s Literature Charitable Trust.

Tessa stepped into leadership at NZSA while dealing with the tragic loss of one of her daughters and her mother when they died within days of each other in 1992. She has continued in leadership at NZSA or Storylines since that time and speaks of the courage it can take to challenge government, the funders and even other authors in the quest for writer’s rights.

Tessa’s episodes, and all in Season 3, are accompanied by a beautiful photo portrait of the writer taken by John McDermott, and hosted by New Zealand broadcaster, NZSA member and author Karyn Hay. Season 3 has been supported by a grant from The Southern Trust.

You can listen to Season 3 and 14 other episodes from writers  (both living and dead) from previous seasons on our website, Soundcloud, Stitcher, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Want to know more about the NZSA Oral History Podcast Series?  Read the NZ Herald article about the series on our website.

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