Applications for a three-week writer’s residency in Wellington will open this Friday 11 June 2021. The Verb Wellington Writers Residency is open to Aotearoa writers and supported by the Verb Community, Mātātuhi Foundation, Katherine Mansfield House & Garden and Residency patron Professor John Ormiston ONZM in memory of his wife Professor Diana (Dinny) Lennon ONZM (1949-2018).
The selected writer will spend three weeks immersed in the vibrant creative culture of Aotearoa’s capital city, writing in the birthplace of internationally acclaimed Modernist writer Katherine Mansfield and staying in the heart of the city in a self-catering character apartment. The resident will receive a stipend of $3000NZD and has the opportunity to appear in the Verb Writers & Readers Festival which takes place in the last stage of the residency period, between 3 - 7 November 2021.
“We are so grateful that we have been able to create this opportunity for an Aotearoa writer. And thanks to Professor Ormiston’s support we can continue to run this residency for the next five years,” says Verb Wellington Director, Claire Mabey, co-creator of Verb Wellington, a beloved organisation designed to support writers and readers.
“Katherine Mansfield House & Garden holds a special place in Aotearoa’s literary landscape and Mansfield’s life and work still inspire writers around the world today. It’s just wonderful to be able to create this once-in-a-lifetime experience that will no doubt produce some compelling work.”
In the nearby historic area of Thorndon, the 1888 home of a young Mansfield and her fashionable colonial family illustrates the decorative trends of the late 19th-century with richly patterned wallpapers and warm native timber. Heritage roses and native plants flourish in the garden at the foot of Te Ahumairangi, near the site of what was once a Māori kāinga named Pakuao.
“During Mansfield’s short life, which was tragically cut short by tuberculosis in France at age 34, she changed the way the short story was written in the English language and her own life story and words fill the rooms the house here on Tinakori Road,” says Cherie Jacobson, Director of Katherine Mansfield House & Garden. “I think a writer will feel very much at home here!”
The 2020 Residency was held by Auckland writer, Himali McInnes who said: “I absolutely LOVED the residency! I really valued the time and dedicated space to write, with no other expectations. But also, lots of chances to meet other writers, and many supportive and encouraging people.”
Applications for the Verb Wellington Residency are invited from established writers of short stories, novels, poetry, creative nonfiction and memoir. The Residency will take place for three weeks during June and July and include a NZD$3000 stipend from Verb Wellington. More information and the application form can be found at https://www.verbwellington.nz/residencies