THE SHAPE WE’RE IN: STEPHANIE JOHNSON
Twenty years ago our Festival was in its infancy. Local guests in 2000 included Elizabeth Knox, whose Vintner’s Luck had been on the bestseller list for a year, Alan Duff with his autobiography Out of the Mist and Steam, and Anne Kennedy, Greg McGee, Kevin Ireland, Sia Figiel, Shonagh Koea, Albert Wendt, and many others. Stephanie Johnson and the late Peter Wells co-founded the Festival not only with the intention of showcasing international writers but more importantly to celebrate our own talent. Festivals may be regarded as a kind of iron count for the nation’s literary blood. How healthy are we two decades later? The advent of guiltless self-publishing, the ubiquity of the internet, the proliferation of creative writing courses, and emphasis on diversity have all had positive and negative effects. Join Johnson for a spirited assessment of the shape we’re in.
Supported by The University of Auckland.