Date of birth: 23 January 1952
Place of birth: Wairoa, Hawkes Bay
Now living in: Paraparaumu
- What is your favourite food?
- What was your most embarrassing moment?
- The day the traffic officer came to our school to give us a talk on road safety, and I ran across the road without stopping and looking first.
- How do you relax?
- Reading, painting or walking along the beach.
- Who inspired you when you were little?
- My parents.
- What were you like at school?
- Skinny! Generally quiet, a bookworm.
- What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?
- Favourite: Nature Study, Sewing.
Can’t think of anything I hated.
- What was the book you most loved as a child?
- My sister’s copy of The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum - in particular the illustration of the Emerald City.
- Which person from the past would you most like to meet?
- My ancestor Ihaka Whaanga.
- Who is your favourite author/children’s author?
- Author: Barbara Kingsolver
Children’s Authors: Sherryl Jordan, Jack Lasenby, William Taylor.
- Why did you want to be a writer?
- To share the stories my father told me, and to write about our people (Māori) and our view of the world.
- Do you have a special place where you write your books?
- I write in many places. Since I moved to Wellington I have done a lot of writing while on the train travelling to and from the city.
- What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?
- Best: feeling that I am promoting understanding about a Māori view of life.
- If you weren’t a writer, what would you like to be?
- An artist.
- What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
- Read lots of books, learn about other people, be open to new ideas.
This interview is from 2002.