Authors (New Zealand)
Where can I find information about New Zealand authors?
Entry last updated: 12/03/19
There are many successful New Zealand authors who have written books for children, young adults and adults. In this entry we will show you how to find information about their writing, early lives and things that are important to them. We will also mention writing as a career.
Well known authors
Here is a list of some well known New Zealand authors but there are many more. You will find information about these and other authors on the the websites we have chosen for this entry. Some authors have their own official websites, like the ones highlighted below.
Marlene Bennetts (1938 –)
Gavin Bishop (1946 -)
Barry Crump (1935 – 1996)
Kate De Goldi (1959 -)
Lynley Dodd (1941 –)
Janet Frame (1924 - 2004)
Maurice Gee (1931–)
Peter Gossage (1946-2016)
Glyn Harper (1958 -)
David Hill (1942 -)
V.M. Jones (1958 –)
Margaret Mahy (1936 – 2012)
Katherine Mansfield (1888 – 1923)
Tips: Some authors have their own official websites, like the ones highlighted above. Use Google to search for an author's official website. If you put speech marks ” ” or ‘ ‘ around your search term , Google will search for it as a phrase, which is very handy if you’re looking for the name of a person. If an author has died, then you may find an obituary - a tribute to their life.
Facts, interviews & biographies
These are some of our favourite websites for finding out about New Zealand writers.
This website is all about books and reading in New Zealand and it has lots of information about New Zealand authors as well.
There are two places to look:
- Choose Education and then 'authors' to search or browse the A-Z for authors who are part of the Writers in Schools programme.
- Choose Writers to search or browse the A-Z for more authors.
Tips: Websites that have .org in the address can have good information, but you need to check how reliable it is. Go to the ‘about ’ link to find out what the organisation's mission and values are.
Tips: Check the date of the interview at the bottom of the page as many are from 2002 so will not include current information. Websites that have .com in the address can have good information, but you need to check how reliable it is. Go to the ‘about ’ link to find out what the company's mission and values are.
Storylines is an organisation that promotes books and reading to children and young adults and includes information about New Zealand authors.
Each entry has a short life story, a list of the author's books, and a list of awards they have received. Remember to look at the 'Other resources' at the bottom of the page, as these sometimes include quizzes and live interviews.
Tips: This is also a .org website so don't forget to check the 'about us’ link on the website to find out what the organisation’s mission and values are.
Te Ara is a great place to look for New Zealand information. The story called Literature is about New Zealand writing and authors from earliest times up until the present day. It covers Māori writing, Fiction and Non-fiction, children's and young adult literature and also comics and graphic novels!
- Go to Sections.
- Choose Creative and intellectual life.
- Then select Literature.
If you know the author's name, you can also try looking under the Biographies section.
Tips: We like this website because it is a government website (it has .govt in the web address) so you can trust the information.
Writing as a career
It can take a lot of work and practice to become a professional writer. Here are some resources that might help if you would like to make a career out of writing.
CareersNZ is the best place to look for information about jobs and careers in New Zealand. It is a government website so you can trust the information. You can tell this because it has .govt in the web address.
- Use the search bar to enter the name of your job or career.
- Try searching for keywords like 'authors' and 'writers'.
- Choose Courses from the front page to search for writing courses.
This organisation exists to help young New Zealanders with their creative writing. They have regular writing competitions to help young authors work on their writing.
The NZ Writers College has put together a useful list of upcoming writing competitions and events.
Tips: Remember to check the ‘about ’ link to find out what the business' mission and values are.
Your school library or public library may also have books about New Zealand authors, like the titles listed here.
- Margaret Mahy: A Writer's Life : A Literary Portrait of New Zealand's Best-loved Children's Author
- Telling tales : a life in writing By William Taylor, 1938-2015
- Katherine Mansfield by Kevin Boon
- The life and art of Lynley Dodd by Finlay Macdonald
- Janet Frame by Kevin Boon
- Ngaio Marsh by Kevin Boon.