Verb Readers & Writers Festival Programmer 2022 vacancy

Festival Programmer?

Verb is looking for a passionate reader with a hankering to formulate conversations and experiences for our Verb Readers & Writers Festival 2022.
You’ll be working with a wider team of Festival makers to create approximately 55 events that tell a story of the vibrant literary community of which we are a part.
Apply by Tuesday 7 December!
Full Position Description below or Download Position Description


Verb Readers & Writers Festival is scheduled to take place between the days Thursday 3 November – Sunday 6 November 2022 with LitCrawl Wellington to take place on Saturday 5 November as part of the Festival.

In total the Festival should consist of approximately 55 events.

This is a fixed term contract position to work as the Festival programmer between January 2022 and November 2022. It will be part time with some full time hours throughout programme production ahead of the launch of the Festival and over the Festival itself.

Pōneke / Te Whanganui-a-Tara / Wellington

To illuminate Aotearoa’s literary talent, both emerging and established, through a Festival platform that welcomes everyone.


Manaakitanga: we exist because we respect and deeply care for Aotearoa’s writers and readers. We value the mana of all who connect with us and work to uplift our artists and audiences, partners and supporters.

Whanaungatanga: coming together to create experiences that value all of the contributions of our wider community, our team, and our advisors who we work closely with.

Whai Whakaaro: we create with thought, care and intentionality to ensure strength in what we offer and kindness to all.

To deliver the programme for the 2022 Verb Readers & Writers Festival, including LitCrawl Wellington, and work with Founders, Festival Producers and Festival Coordinator to deliver the Festival.

The key capabilities of the role are:

  • Ability to develop an artistic framework for a programme that serves our kaupapa and values.

  • Read widely across Aotearoa literatures including but not limited to journals, online collections, and independent publishers.

  • Work closely with the Artistic Advisory group who are in place to support programming and to support reading and in-depth knowledge of Aotearoa’s literary communities.

  • Draw on networks Verb has developed with publishers, editors, and literary collectives when shaping the programme and developing ideas.

  • Work as part of a team supporting the artistic vision and the artists that the programme is bringing into the festival.

  • Ability to create both imaginative and provocative events as well as events that can serve a broad audience base.

Key skills and attributes:

  • Passion for Aotearoa’s literary sector and the variety of literary communities within it

  • Ability to work to deadline

  • Ability to think creatively as well as utilise frameworks and parameters

  • Ability to work to budget

  • Ability to manage a programming budget

  • Attention to detail

  • Excellent organisational skills

  • Excellent management of information

  • Excellent communication skills

  • Knowledge of the literary sector

  • Calm under pressure

  • Collaborative approach

  • Strong office software skills including Word, Excel, Outlook (or equivalent). Experience in Office 365 is a plus. Training will be given for Festival-specific software.


The Festival Programmer will also be required to:

  • Write accurate and vibrant event copy for each event that the programmer creates, to deadline

  • Create and implement artist communications for marketing and administration

  • Work closely with the Founders, Producers and Festival Coordinator to manage the Festival grid

  • Describe each event in technical terms for the Production Managers

  • Be on the ground in the lead up to and over the Festival to help deliver the events

  • Work with Publicist to arrange media for Festival artists, and appear themselves in publicity opportunities as they arise, to promote the Festival

  • Other duties as directed by the Executive Director.


  • The Festival Programmer is accountable to the producing team (Claire Mabey, Andrew Laking, Melanie Hamilton) who report to the Trust Board.

Part-time fixed term contract with a fee calculated at $71,000 pro rata Jan – November 2022.

Please send us a letter telling us why you would like to join Verb and lead the programming. Please include any relevant programming experience. A short CV is welcome.

Please email to by 5pm Tuesday 7 December.

Interviews will take place on Tuesday 14 December and shortlisted applicants will be asked to present an artistic vision.

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