for Speculative Fiction Writers in New Zealand
It’s well known that support and acknowledgement for a writer’s creative work, coming at the right time, can make all the difference in a career. Indeed, in 1952 Janet Frame was saved from an imminent lobotomy when her doctor at Seacliff Hospital read about a literary award she’d received in a local newspaper. As the NZSA writes: “Frame understood that it was not just the award money that was welcomed but also the boost in morale for an author who may have been feeling under-appreciated.” To this end, SpecFicNZ are delighted to announce the introduction of the Wright-Murray Residency for Speculative Writers beginning in 2020.
To create the residency and to support the wellbeing of our speculative writing community, Lee Murray, award-winning writer and a SpecFicNZ life member, has joined forces with philanthropist Chloe Wright of The Wright Family Foundation to offer a week’s residency to allow a New Zealand speculative writer with a specific project the freedom to write. The residency will take place by arrangement at ‘Fallohide’, a Bay of Plenty country estate and a place which is, very appropriately, imbued with fantasy, says the owner.
“Long before Peter Jackson ever contemplated creating on film Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, a ten-year-old girl read The Hobbit and was captivated. When she got older, she married a handsome prince and set about designing a house where they would raise their children to be as brave and as adventurous as Bilbo. She knew her children would be tall and would love the woodlands and adventures. So she named this house ‘Fallohide’. Unlike the Tooks, who are smaller hobbits with hairy feet, the Fallohide are a branch whose feet are smooth. They are tall and adventurous and have now gone out into the world to slay their own dragons and to bring light into dark places. They welcome you into this place of peace.”
The residency at Fallohide offers seven night’s access to a private room as well as the residence’s numerous communal areas which include gorgeous salons, a formal dining room, and a large eat-in kitchen overlooking the potager. The property itself is a French-inspired country estate tucked into the countryside with a swimming pool, gazebo, formal gardens, and ready access to the ocean and beach.
As well as the accommodation, the winning writer will receive up to $1000 towards transport and food costs, and ten hours of mentorship or peer support to assist them in developing their work. In return, the writer will be asked to donate an hour of their time to a community writers’ group or school, which the residency will arrange on their behalf.
Entries are open to all writers of speculative works (short fiction, novella, or novel, for adults or youth) residing in New Zealand.
Any queries, please contact SpecFicNZ.