Dunedin Writers & Readers Festival - Writers, Readers, Mums

9 - 12 May 2019

We’ve got your Mother’s Day presents covered. We have a sneaky feeling that mums of Dunedin would love a ticket to one (or quite possibly lots) of our events. The Dunedin Writers & Readers Festival caters for many flavours of mum. Here’s a sampler:

The Grandmum

Send her to Villains & Grannies. This event is free, so just point her in the direction of the Dunedin Public Art Gallery on Thursday 9 May at 3.30pm (with young grandkids in tow). She’ll learn all manner of things about nannahood from Eric Veillé (the French author and illustrator of Encyclopedia of Grannies). Fellow French picture book illustrator Clotilde Perrin (the genius behind Inside the Villains) will join Eric for a storytelling/drawing session.

More details here:

The Muso Mum

Mums who like Straitjacket Fits and Dimmer will love hearing Shayne Carter talk about his new memoir, Dead People I Have Known. Don McGlashan says, “It’s a dark, honest, often hilarious memoir about love, pain, destiny and dressing room antipasto.”

More details here:

The Outdoorsy Mum

If she likes the outdoors and is intrigued by the idea of an off-grid life, she’ll love listening to Miriam Lancewood, author of Woman in the Wilderness, in conversation with Jinty MacTavish. Lancewood gave up a teaching career and modern comforts to live in the wilderness, where a tent became her bedroom and the river her tap/dishwasher/fridge/shower.

More details here: 

The Theatre-Keen Mum

Those missing the Fortune Theatre will thrill to Rebecca Vaughan’s performance of Orlando (based on Virginia Woolf’s satirical novel of 1928, written and directed by Elton Townend-Jones). Vaughan calls it “a wonderful romp through 400 years of history seen through the eyes of the everyman/woman character – Orlando”.

More details here:

The Anxious Mum

Anyone who battles with anxiety or depression might find some succour listening to three writers who’ve done their bit to destigmatise mental illness: Naomi Arnold (editor of Headlands: New Stories of Anxiety, Ashleigh Young (one of the contributors to Headlands) and Wendy Parkins (author of Every morning, so far, I’m alive: a memoir).

More details here: 

The Funny Mum

The laugh-keen mum will enjoy hearing comedian and author Michèle A’Court compare notes with wit-sharp Sunday columnist Leah McFall. Both award-winning writers have mastered the tricky business of ‘writing funny’ – they will talk to Liz Breslin about putting humour on the page.

More details here:

The Fiction-Devouring Mum

For the mum who loves her fiction, we have an embarrassment of riches: Liam McIlvanney, Vincent O’Sullivan, John Boyne, Markus Zusak, historical fiction and short fiction. 

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The Poet Mum

Poetry buffs can choose from four poem-saluting options. 

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Every Mum

If she’s a fan of equality (every mum, then) she might be keen to hear Clementine Ford talk about her incendiary new book Boys Will Be Boys with Michèle A’Court. Ford will also appear alongside Lizzie Marvelly, author of That F Word: Growing up Feminist in Aotearoa.

More details here:


And on Mother’s Day, we have five mums at different stages of parenting delivering a letter to motherhood. Those stepping up to the mic: Clementine Ford, Michèle A’Court, Tina Makereti, Majella Cullinane and Louise Wallace (MC: Charlotte McKay).

More details here:

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