The Sandra Hyde Romance Writers Scholarship 2016

2016 Conference Scholarship Open

The Sandra Hyde Romance Writers Trust is offering a scholarship to the Romance Writers of NZ annual conference, All You Need Is Love, August 12-14, 2016 in Auckland. (More information on the conference here.)

The scholarship is open to all New Zealand romance writers, and will cover the recipient’s RWNZ Conference fees (Friday Workshop and Weekend Conference, plus cocktail party). If the winner is not currently a member of RWNZ, their prize will include a one-year membership subscription, since only members can attend the Weekend Conference. The winner will also receive a $150 contribution toward expenses. | Read More...

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Agenda for 2016 SpecFicNZ AGM

Hi everyone! This year’s AGM will be taking place at 11am this Sunday 5 June, at Au Contraire III in Wellington. We’ll be working through the agenda below, and all members will have the opportunity to present questions or project ideas under item 7: Any other business. Agenda Welcome Meeting called to order and roll taken. A quorum of 10 members is required for the AGM to proceed. Presentation of last year’s AGM minutes and vote to accept. The 2015 AGM minutes can be found here. Voting for the new Core committee…. | Read More...

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Get involved in SpecFicNZ in 2016-17!

Au Contraire III is approaching fast, and so is SpecFicNZ’s 2016 AGM, which will be held at the convention.

The AGM is a chance for members to discuss what direction you’d like to see SpecFicNZ take – and to become involved yourself. This year we’ll be holding an election for new Core members, so if you’re keen to have a say in SpecFicNZ’s activities for the next year, let us know – email us at

More info, and a list of current nominees, can be found at | Read More...

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LexiCon now open for registrations!

lexi spiralIt’s time to book your spot at the 38th New Zealand National Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention, being held at Queen’s Birthday Weekend 2017 in Taupō.

Head to the event’s new website where you can register early and book accommodation, all in one place.

Convention Committee co-chair Cassie Hart says the new website is the first step in the lead up to what is going to be an exciting event.

“We wanted to make things easy for everyone by having a one stop shop where you can register for the convention, book a room at the event venue and sign up for convention news updates,” says Cassie. | Read More...

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Au Contraire 3 Short Story Award Results Announced!

The winners of the Au Contraire III Short Story Award, convened by Dan Rabarts and Lee Murray and judged by Phillip Mann, have been announced. Congratulations!

Winners of the Au Contraire 3 Short Story Award

1st       To the Centre of the Earth, by Robinne Weiss

2nd      The Wasp-keeper’s Mother, by Andi Buchanan

3rd       Tane Mahuta, by AJ Fitzwater

Highly commended (in no particular order):

And Time, by Summer Wigmore

Keepsake, by Anna Smith

The Seven Wonders of the World Hotel, by Jane Percival | Read More...

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2016 Au Contraire SFF Short Story Award

Short Fiction Contest 2016 Banner V3 copy

Au Contraire 3 in association with SpecFicNZ present:

The 2016 Science Fiction and Fantasy Short Story Award

as part New Zealand’s 37th National Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention

Judge: Phillip Mann
Arthur C. Clarke-nominated author of the world-building classic The Disestablishment of Paradise.

Pre-judging by award-winning editing team, Dan Rabarts and Lee Murray.


  • First Prize: $250, and publication in the Au Contraire 3 Convention Programme
  • Second Prize: NZ$100, and a selection of print books to be awarded at Au Contraire 3
  • Third Prize: NZ$50, and a selection of print books to be awarded at Au Contraire 3

All cash prizes kindly donated by SpecFicNZ, New Zealand’s national organisation for writers of speculative fiction


  1. Entry is free, but entrants should be current members of SFFANZ, or registered to attend the 2016 national conference Au Contraire 3. A link to SFFANZ can be found here. A link to the Au Contraire 3 membership page can be found here. Entrants need not be members of SpecFicNZ. A link to SpecFicNZ’s homepage can be found here.
  2. Submitted stories can address any theme providing it is speculative (science fiction, fantasy, horror or any sub-genre is acceptable), and should have a word count of 3000 words or less.
  3. Original stories only, no reprints or simultaneous submissions, please.
  4. Writers are welcome to submit more than one story.
  5. Standard formatting:  Arial or Times New Roman, 12pt, 1.5 spaced, indenting for paragraphs, with the story title and numbering included as page header. Submissions are blind, so your name should only appear in your cover email and NOT on the manuscript.
  6. Stories for an adult audience are fine, but those with gratuitous sex, gore and violence are unlikely to be shortlisted.
  7. Please send your stories as a .doc or .rtf attachment to: with Submission: Your Story Title in the subject line. (Remember to ensure that your name or email address DO NOT appear on the manuscript).
  8. Competition closes at midnight 31 March 2016. Entries received after this date will not be read. All participants will be notified of the results by late April, 2016.

**Please note that entry to the award automatically assumes that the winning entrant will allow first print publication of their story by Au Contraire 3 in its Convention Programme to be distributed to convention members (all other rights to be retained by the author). | Read More...

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SpecFicNZ needs you!

SpecFicNZ is run by a committee – the Core – annually nominated and elected by our members. The 2016 election will be held at Au Contraire III in Wellington over Queen’s Birthday weekend, with an online meeting room integrated for members who aren’t attending the convention.

This year, several long-running Core members will be stepping down, so we’re looking for people who are able to step up and help SpecFicNZ help New Zealand creators in 2017 (and beyond…?). If your expertise fits any of the role descriptions below – or if you’ve just got some great ideas for SpecFicNZ you’d love to see materialise – then let us know, and we’ll happily add your name to the nominations list! | Read More...

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Promotional opportunity for horror/dark fiction writers

SpecFicNZ member Lee Murray is attending StokerCon 2016 in Las Vegas this May. She has offered to put together some promotional postcards featuring SpecFicNZ members’ work to distribute to other guests and attendees at the convention.

All members of SpecFicNZ who write horror or dark fiction are invited to send their work to potentially be featured on the promo card.

Send Lee details about your work by filling in the StokerCon Promo Application at SurveyMonkey. You will need:

  • Title of work
  • A cover image, minimum 300 dpi at A5 dimensions, and the ability to upload this to a Google Drive
  • A working URL link to the book’s landing page, or online vendor. Please triple-check links are accurate.

Deadline: 29 February 2016 |

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Support NZ SpecFic: PISCES OF FATE, by Paul Mannering

pof_ebook_cover2Ascott Pudding stopped typing and looked up, staring out from under the palm-leaf roof of his beach hut veranda. He gazed over the sunlit crystal waters of the lagoon, past the jagged fangs of the coral reef where the waves burst into foam, all the way to the horizon, where he saw the pale smudge of a man striding across the low waves.

‘This,’ he announced, ‘may require pants.’

Paper Road Press is crowdfunding $1000 towards printing costs for the paperback edition of Paul Mannering’s Pisces of Fate, sequel to the award-winning Engines of Empathy. Backer rewards include signed copies of the book, exclusive totes and posters, and other perks. | Read More...

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Featured Work Kiwi Writers 

Pisces of Fate

Pisces of Fate, by Paul Mannering 
Published by Paper Road Press

When Ascott Pudding’s parents died, he ran to the ends of the earth – or to the tropical Aardvark Archipelago, which is essentially the same thing. But distance is relative and now a retired god has turned up with more bad news: Ascott’s sister, Charlotte, is probably dying too.

Charlotte isn’t the only endangered Pudding. Before Ascott can go home and save his sister from uncertain death, he’ll have to escape a homicidal octopus, a migrating whale pod, and several varieties of pirate. | Read More...

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Vote on the proposed Code of Conduct

Deadline: 31 December 2015

At this year’s AGM, attendees voted in favour of the SpecFicNZ Core drafting a Code of Conduct by which our members would be expected to abide as part of their membership of the society. This Code of Conduct has now been drafted.

As our Constitution requires any new membership-related changes to the society to be approved by our members, we are now inviting all members to vote on whether or not to accept this Code of Conduct into the SpecFicNZ society rules.

Please click through to the survey below to read the proposed Code of Conduct and vote on whether or not it should be adopted by SpecFicNZ. | Read More...

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Anthologies Competition Announcements E-books SpecFicNZ Writing Competitions 

Three spooky SpecFicNZ stories for NZ Bookshop Day

Winners of Spooky Bookshops Challenge Announced!


We are thrilled to announce the winners SpecFicNZ’s Spooky Bookshops Challenge:

First Place “The Shelver” by Piper Mejia
Second Place “The Bookshop” by Jane Percival
Third Place “The Box” by I.K. Paterson-Harkness

A huge congratulations to Piper, Jane, and I.K. for three gripping page-turners!

specficnz shorts cover2

SpecFicNZ has published the three winning stories in an ebook as SpecFicNZ Shorts to coincide with NZ Bookshop Day, which falls on Halloween this year. | Read More...

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LexiCon 2017 Venue Announced

lexi spiralTaupo to host science fiction and fantasy event in 2017

Organisers of LexiCon, the 38th New Zealand National Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention, have just announced that the 2017 event will be held at the Suncourt Hotel in Taupo from Friday 2 to Sunday 4 June (Queen’s Birthday Weekend).

Convention Committee co-chairs, Andi Buchanan and Cassie Hart say they’re thrilled with the decision.

“We were really keen to hold Lexicon in a New Zealand town that had never hosted one before so we could introduce the concept to the local community,” says Andi Buchanan. “After speaking to a number of venues across the country, Taupo came up tops.” | Read More...

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Pre-order with Paper Road Press and win


Wellington-based boutique publisher Paper Road Press is running two giveaways in conjunction with their upcoming release, SHORTCUTS: Track 1. New Zealand readers can get in the draw to win a $50 Booksellers voucher by pre-ordering the paperback through the Paper Road Press website (payment via PayPal) before 1 November, and after the book is published, international and New Zealand readers will be able to enter the draw to win a $50 voucher by Tweeting or emailing the Press a picture of their copy of the book. | Read More...

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