Warm patrons of literature

It seems that in the early days of our city's European history, it was very much the fashion for visiting luminaries to make a progression through the country, stopping at every town to meet the locals and be wined and dined. Anthony Trollope, who turns 200 this year, was one such celebrity, and passed through New…
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Etched in pain

Chronic pain is one of many invisible disabilities - invisible, that is, unless you suffer from it, or are close with someone who does. The statistics are quite bad; according to the Chronic Pain health report from Arthritis New Zealand, as many as one in six New Zealanders will suffer some kind of chronic pain…
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The Art of the Novel

It's 8:15 on Sunday morning and there's already a queue of at least thirty people waiting to get into the free 'Art of the Novel' session. It's not due to start till 9am and by the time I'm half way through my coffee the line stretches round the corner and out of sight. The room…
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Survival is insufficient – Emily St John Mandel at the Auckland Writers Festival

Talk to me about the future! Talk to me about the end of the world; about plagues and the collapse of civilisation. Talk to me about fame and dead ends and the different ways people find themselves stranded; talk to me about the art people make in order to stay alive, stay human, because survival…
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Stories for everyone : Auckland Writers Festival – New Zealand Listener Gala night!

Last night was the very grand opening of the Auckland Writers Festival and it was excellent! I came away from it feeling inspired and buzzed and had already broken my (admitted weak) promise to myself that I wouldn't buy any books this festival. I have since downgraded this to 'don't buy all the books' which…
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