Michalia Arathimos selected as 2020 Randell Cottage Writer
Attn: Arts and Literary Editors
17 December 2019
Michalia Arathimos selected as 2020 Randell Cottage Writer in Residence
Melbourne-based but Wellington-born, writer, reviewer and editor Michalia Arathimos will be returning to her home city next year as the 2020 Creative New Zealand Randell Cottage Writing Fellow. Arathimos will be using her time at the Randell Cottage to work on her second novel, Cartographia, which she describes as an exploration of place, migration and identity, through the eyes of a woman of Greek descent.
Arathimos has published work in many places, including The Lifted Brow, Overland Magazine, Landfall, Sport and Headland. She was twice short-listed for Australia’s Overland VU Short Story Prize and won 2016’s New Zealand Sunday Times Short Story Prize. Her first novel Aukati was published in 2017 by Wellington’s Mākaro Press. Arathimos holds a PhD in Creative Writing from Victoria University’s IIML and is currently fiction reviewer for the Melbourne-based Overland Magazine.
Selection panel convener Stephen Stratford says “It was a mast year for applications for this valuable fellowship – in quality and quantity – but Michalia’s application stood out and was the panel’s unanimous choice. Her writing sample sang and the residential aspect of the fellowship will clearly be of benefit to a project which draws from Michalia’s own experience growing up in Wellington’s Greek community.”
Arathimos says she is delighted to be the 2020 resident and is looking forward to her six months in the capital.
“Wellington, with its hills and fault lines and glittering sea, is like a perfect espresso cup of culture and energy. It's also home to a lot of quiet minorities, like the Greek community I come from, who carry stories that might be less well known than others. I can’t wait to return.”
The Randell Cottage Writers Trust was established in 2002. The restored Category II historic building, gifted to the Trust by the Price family, hosts two writers a year: one from New Zealand and the other from France. It is currently home to Dunedin writer Paddy Richardson. The 2020 French resident, writer and photographer Amaury da Caunha arrives in Wellington in mid-January 2020, to work on a project about Minnie Deans, convicted and hanged in 1895 for the murder of several children in her care.