I Have Always Been a Bookworm

When I was a child my mother worried that I didn’t get out and spend enough time with friends, but who needs friends when you have books? I’m joking! I’m joking. I have many wonderful friends. But I also have many wonderful books. I spent a lot of my childhood embedded in pages. Mum didn’t … Continue reading I Have Always Been a Bookworm

What it Means to be a Māori Writer

Shilo Kino with Patricia Grace and Robyn Bargh at the Pikihuia Awards in 2013. Don't call me a Māori writer. I am a writer who is Māori. Yeah, there’s a difference. I tell stories. Stories I hope will shape perspective. Give life more meaning. And as cliche as it sounds, provide a voice for the … Continue reading What it Means to be a Māori Writer

A Story to Tell

Tēnā tātou katoa. He uri tēnei nō Ngāti Hine, me Ngāpuhi. Ko Tokerau te maunga, Ko Taumarere te awa, Ko Waiomio te whenua. I tipu ake ahau kei Tāmaki Makarau ki te tonga i te taha o tōku Māmā - no Ingarani ia. Ko Wallasey te whenua, Ko Cheshire te rohe, Ko Mersey te awa. … Continue reading A Story to Tell

Hi, I’m Hone Rata

I’ve always found introducing myself a little strange. “Hi, I’m Hone Rata.” Handshake. Eye contact. Smile. So that’s my name but it’s doesn’t say a lot about me. “I’m 43.” That’s new information, so a 43 year old male, probably likes sports (nope, well not enough to follow any team). Oh so doesn’t like sports, … Continue reading Hi, I’m Hone Rata

Highway to Heal

When you were a little girl, books were your refuge. You learned to read before you went to school. You would read the newspaper everyday, on the floor with the sheets spread out. You read everything in the house: a set of Childcraft books, The Thorn Birds, Benét’s Reader’s Encyclopedia (the Illustrated Second Edition).  You … Continue reading Highway to Heal

I am a Writer. I am Māori.

I come from a family of storytellers; they seem to be able to spin the spoken word into magic. Put me on the spot and my words get tangled in my mouth and become something awkward and heavy. I can never quite seem to articulate my thoughts that way, but give me a pen? Give … Continue reading I am a Writer. I am Māori.

Six Māori writers announced for Te Papa Tupu 2018

Media release 12 June 2018 Six aspiring writers have been selected for Te Papa Tupu 2018, a writing programme developed by the Māori Literature Trust and organised by Huia Publishers. The chosen writers will spend six months working alongside  mentors to develop their manuscripts and improve their writing skills to meet the end goal of … Continue reading Six Māori writers announced for Te Papa Tupu 2018

Beyond the ending

When Te Papa Tupu ended on Friday December 3rd at a hui held at the offices of Huia Publishers in Thorndon, it felt more like the closing of one process and the opening of another than an ending. We were welcomed warmly into the Huia whānau, and Robyn Bargh explained their kaupapa of nurturing writers, … Continue reading Beyond the ending

Characters: hanging on to what matters

When I last met my mentor, Alia Bloom, we shared coffee in the sun on the terrace of her home, and I hesitantly agreed with her suggestion to dispatch Buddy Winter. I created Buddy so it was only right that I be the one to destroy him. He was an awful man, but like a … Continue reading Characters: hanging on to what matters

Tania Butcher builds on memories of Maketu

The beginnings of writing the Maketu warriors’ story cropped up five years ago in a conversation with my cousin Huia Tapsell who wanted something concrete to remember all those men who lived in Maketu during the warring years.