Application guidelines

Application guidelines

Six chosen writers will receive the opportunity to work alongside a mentor to develop their manuscript, improve their writing skills, all to meet the end goal of having a publishable manuscript.

Te Papa Tupu offers each writer with:

  • One-on-one mentoring & coaching,
  • Attendance at three writer’s workshops and a national writer’s festival,
  • Financial support for six months,
  • Networking opportunities,

A position in this programme is highly valued as you have an opportunity to see your work published.

We strongly encourage applicants to submit a full manuscript to get the most out of this programme and the mentoring. For guidelines on word count by genre you can search on Google. 

Please read this information carefully before applying for Te Papa Tupu.

ENTRY criteria

  1. Applicants must be of New Zealand Māori descent and living in Aotearoa New Zealand.
  2. Manuscripts must be original, your own work, not previously published or under contract.
  3. Manuscripts may be written in te reo Māori or English and cover any written genre.
  4. All entries must be submitted online at
  5. Entries must be saved as a PDF or word document and formatted with with double-spacing, page numbers with your name and the title of the work on each page.
  6. Writers must be able to commit to six months’ participation in Te Papa Tupu and this will require:
    • Attendance to three workshops,
      • First workshop: 15-16 October 2020 (contingency date 12-13 November 2020)
      • Second workshop: 11-12 February 2021 (contingency date 18-19 March 2021)
      • Third workshop.: 30-31 March 2021 (contingency date 30-31 March 2021)
    • Attendance to the Auckland Writers Festival in 11-16 May 2021,
    • Completion of work to a schedule as agreed with the mentor,
    • Completion of a monthly blog post to be published on
  7. The closing date for applications is 23 August 2020. Entries received after this date will not be eligible. The selected applicants will be notified by 30 September 2020.
  8. The judges’ decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into.
  9. All applicants’ personal details must be valid and up to date and will be held by The Māori Literature Trust for the purpose of this programme and for future promotion and marketing purposes in accordance with the Māori Literature Trust Privacy Policy.
  10. The Māori Literature Trust and Huia Publishers reserve the right to publish names and photographs of the chosen writers for promotional purposes.
  11. Previous Te Papa Tupu writers are not eligible to enter.
  12. Employees of The Māori Literature Trust, Huia Publishers and their immediate families are not eligible to enter.


  1. Completion of the application form is deemed acceptance of these terms and conditions.
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