Prelude: Katherine Mansfield
Miro Bilbrough + Christine Leunens + Whiti Hereaka + Alexandra Philp
Queensland Terrace, level 2, State Library
Country of Focus / Main Festival
#About the event
Duration: 60 minutes
Katherine Mansfield, it is said, was the only writer Virginia Woolf was jealous of. Arguably the most celebrated modernist writer to emerge from Aotearoa New Zealand, Mansfield’s influence on the English short story form was profound. Her literary legacy in her native country has been by turns an inspiration and a burden. Four writers examine her work, its personal influence, and historical and political context, and provide a critical reassessment nearly a century after her death.
Panel: Miro Bilbrough, Christine Leunens, Whiti Hereaka
Chair: Alexandra Philp
Miro Bilbrough’s memoir of the counterculture, In the Time of the Manaroans (Ultimo Press, Victoria University Press), was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, and has been hailed as ‘the best book of non-fiction published in New Zealand in 2020’. Miro lives in Sydney where she teaches screenwriting and directing, and where she has made award-winning films ‘Floodhouse’, ‘Being Venice’, ‘Bartleby’ and ‘Urn’. She has published poetry in Australasian journals, anthologies and apps, and in the poetry chapbook Small-time spectre’ (Kilmog Press); and her poem 'Spider silk' won second equal in the Val Vallis Award 2016.
Christine Leunens is the author of: Primordial Soup, described by The Sunday Times as 'a remarkable debut novel'; A Can of Sunshine, selected as one of the Best Books of the Year 2013 by the New Zealand Herald; Caging Skies, adapted into the Academy Award-winning film Jojo Rabbit, and her new novel, In Amber’s Wake, currently being adapted into a film by the producer of the Academy Award-winning film, Thelma & Louise. Christine's novels have been translated into over twenty languages. She has a Master’s degree in English and American Literature and Language from Harvard University and a PhD in Creative writing from Victoria University of Wellington.
Whiti Hereaka is an award-winning novelist and playwright of Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Te Arawa, Ngāti Whakaue, Tuhourangi, Ngāti Tumatawera, Tainui and Pākehā descent, based in Wellington, New Zealand. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing (Scriptwriting) from the International Institute of Modern Letters.
In 2012, Whiti was the recipient of the Bruce Mason Playwriting Award. Her play Rewena, written during her writer in residency at the Michael King Writers Centre in 2012, has been performed nationally and was published in the anthology Here/Now in 2015.
During 2018 and 2019, Whiti worked as a scriptwriter on the second season of Pukeko Pictures' animated TV series: Kiddets.
She is the author of three novels: The Graphologist's Apprentice, and the award-winning YA novels Bugs and Legacy. In 2019, Legacy won the New Zealand Children's and Young Adult Book Award for YA fiction.
She is also co-editor, with Witi Ihimaera, of an anthology of Māori myths — Pūrākau — published in 2019.
Whiti's latest novel, Kurangaituku, retells the story of Hatupatu, from the ogress bird woman's point of view.
Alex Philp writes fiction and screenplays. Her short fiction has been published in Overland, Westerly, Voiceworks, and the Review of Australian Fiction, and in 2017 she won the Rachel Funari Prize for Fiction. In 2021, her short film ‘Pools’ (produced and directed by Luisa Martiri) premiered at Flickerfest and was also an official selection for Show Me Shorts (2021) and Cinefest Oz (2021). She has a PhD in creative writing from QUT, where she also currently teaches.