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NZ Writers inspire young talent in Tauranga

Thursday 4 June 2015

NZ Writers inspire young talent in Tauranga.

On Tuesday 9th of June, the Tauranga City Libraries will be hosting the New Zealand Book Council’s national Speed Date an Author programme. It is the Tauranga debut of the acclaimed literary event and it is being held at the Baycourt Community and Arts Centre.

The Tauranga City Libraries encouraged the New Zealand Book Council to bring the event to Tauranga, as they believe it will be of great benefit to school students and the wider community. Schools in the area have been encouraged to invite up to ten of their most deserving young writers from Year Seven to Year Ten to participate.

The event is an opportunity for the aspiring young writers to receive tuition from five of New Zealand’s top authors. Between9.00am and 1.00pm the authors will be delivering fast-paced sessions, 25 minutes long, to five rotating groups of students, followed by a prize-giving. The sessions are intended to develop the skills of the young writers, and to encourage them to find their unique voice.

The event will feature a mix of authors, including the celebrated Kate De Goldi. She has received substantial critical acclaim and is best known for her novel The 10pm Question (2008). It won the New Zealand Post Book Awards for Children and Young Adults in 2009, and is popular within New Zealand and overseas.

Kate De Goldi is participating in the Speed Date an Author event as part of a three day tour of the Bay of Plenty. She arrives on Monday 8th of June, and will visit Tauranga Girls College to hold a series of talks and interactive workshops with students. Later in the day she will be speaking to Bay of Plenty teachers at their association meeting from 4.00pm to 4.30pm. She will conclude her tour with a visit to Golden Sands School in Papamoa on Wednesday.

Local authors will also be participating in the Speed Date an Author event. Susan Brocker, a Tauranga resident, is a prolific writer and has published a collection of over 60 books. Her latest work, 1914: Riding Into War (2014), was published by Scholastic New Zealand and is a fictional take on the history of the Mounted Rifles and their foray at Gallipoli.

Sherryl Jordan, an acclaimed fantasy author and Tauranga local, will also be participating in the event. Jordan began her career as an illustrator before shifting her focus to writing. She is well known for her Denzil trilogy that centres upon the adventures of a time-travelling young wizard through medieval England and modern New Zealand.

Also participating is Bay of Plenty poet and playwright, Brian Potiki, who lives just outside of Rotorua. He has published a number of collections of poetry and is a member of the Travelling Tuataras with his partner Jill Walker.

The fifth author involved is the local Denis Edwards, an award winning sports commentator and children’s novelist. His well-known novels include Killer Moves (1998) and Rebound (1999), which deal with rugby and netball respectively.

The Speed Date an Author event has a strong community focus, and is an opportunity for local authors to shine as they share ideas and form links with next generation of readers and writers. Bay of Plenty students will also gain the rare opportunity to engage with some of New Zealand’s top literary talent, to hone their skills and to find inspiration to write.


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