07 Jun 2011

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Kapiti Island Maori writers residency announced for 2011

Kāpiti Island will again host a Māori writer in 2011 - New Zealand's only writer's residency by Māori for Māori.

The Tau Mai e Kāpiti Māori Writer's Residency, funded by Te Waka Toi/Creative New Zealand and hosted by Kaitiaki o Kāpiti Trust, was held for the first time in June and July 2008, allowing a Māori writer to live and work on Kāpiti Island for eight weeks. John Barrett of the Trust says ‘it’s great news that the residency has received funding for a third year’. A stipend of $4800 is attached to the residency.

‘The first Tau Mai e Kāpiti Writer in Residence was Paora Tibble (2008), followed by Kelly Joseph (2009) and Nuki Takao (2010). It was great to host them on the island,‟he says. Paora worked on his te reo Māori novel for young readers, and researched and wrote several pieces for publication. Paora has since published a book called “Hui Rangatahi” from his writing time on the island and Kelly completed a few short stories, began a short story script and wrote Haiku poems. Kelly said “The most exciting project I worked on while on the Island was working on ideas for a future novel”. Amongst her writings of poetry, short stories, first chapters, memoirs and she started a short film script, Nuki also wrote two short stories (1000 words each) in Māori for 12–14 yr olds about Kāpiti. Both stories will soon be published in two of their journals, one of them will be the lead story and fully illustrated. Nuki said „Going back to the mainland was the most challenging aspect of the whole residency. I went back twice and reluctantly. What was the absolute hardest thing of all? Leaving! Given the choice, I would be there still!’

We're looking forward to applications from a new group of writers from all genres, and to assisting another potential Māori best seller into the world of literature‟John says.

The northern end of Kāpiti includes the island's last remaining Māori-owned land, adjoining the internationally regarded predator-free nature reserve Kāpiti is well-known for.

‘The idea is that the writer gets a chance to hear some of the stories of the island, historical and contemporary, and to create their own writings in this extraordinary natural environment,’ says Minnie Clark from the Kaitiaki o Kāpiti Trust.

The northern end of the Island is currently the home of extended whānau, descendants of the Ngāti Toa, Te Āti Awa and Ngāti Raukawa confederation. The Barrett whānau operate the Kāpiti Nature Lodge. The Tau Mai e Kāpiti Māori Writer’s Residency takes its name from a pātere (chant) composed by Kingi Tahiwi (Ngäti Raukawa whakapapa to Kāpiti whānau) in the 1930s.

The call will go out immediately inviting applications for the residency. The closing date for applications is 15 July 2011. The selection panel's decision will be announced by the 5th August, with the residency commencing at the beginning of September 2011.

For more information contact:

John Barrett
Kaitiaki o Kāpiti Trustee
Mobile: 027 288 3771

For an application form:

Write to:

Minnie Clark
'Tau mai e Kāpiti'
Māori Writer's Residency 2011
PO Box 28
Otaki 5542
Aotearoa/New Zealand

Or email: