Sunday, April 23, 2017

Standing Room Only

Standing Room Only for 04/23/2017

Standing Room Only is literally radio with pictures... and arts, theatre, film, comedy, books, dance, entertainment and music – all the things, in other words, that make life worth living.

Full programme details are available on the Standing Room Only webpage


The Art of Puppets and Puppeteering

Creating a demonic hand puppet is one of the more unusual commissions for Auckland puppeteer Jon Coddington. It's taken a few goes to perfect Tyrone for the premiere of a play called Hand to God about a possessed hand puppet and the impact it has on the Christian ministry at a Texan church. Jon talk to Lynn Freeman about training the cast in the art of puppeteering which is not for the feint hearted. Hand To God will be on at Circa Theatre from 22 April - 20 May.
Apr 23, 2017 02:49 pm

Quintessential Lauris Edmond

As a tribute to her mother, respected writer Lauris Edmond, her daughter Frances has co-edited a new anthology of favourite poetry and prose. She and Sue Fitchett approached family, friends and other writers for suggestions of writing they felt was quintessential Lauris. Night burns with a white fire is available through Steele Roberts Publishers. Frances - who's a writer, actress, director and Lauris' literary executor - joins Lynn Freeman in the studio after the Wellington launch of Night burns with a white fire.
Apr 23, 2017 02:35 pm

Light, Sound and Sculpture at the LUX Te Ao Marama PRECINCT

Paint, marble, fabric, wood, film... all are fundamental artists' materials. What we don't often think about is the role that light plays in art - not only through illumination. Maori artists have harnessed light in all kinds of ways in work created for Wellington's LUX Light Festival this year. Lynn Freeman talks to Robert Jahnke and Hemi Macgregor. Hemi is working with musician Mara TK on an audio visual work, and Bob's presenting neon lit crosses originally created for an outdoor exhibition on Waiheke Island.
Apr 23, 2017 02:24 pm

The Historic Pumphouse Theatre Celebrates its 40th Anniversary

After surviving near demolition back in the 1970s, the North Shore's Pumphouse Theatre is about to celebrate its 40th anniversary. The building's changed a lot - there's heating and dressing rooms for the cast and comfortable seats for the audience. The brick building dates back to 1905 and was originally a water pumping station for the North Shore's early settlers. In 1983 it was listed as a Category II Historic Building. Returning to the stage are a couple who performed in the first Pumphouse Theatre production. Lynn Freeman chats with Max and Sue Golding who have both taken many bows on that stage over the decades.
Apr 23, 2017 01:48 pm

Bringing Te Reo Maori to the Stage

It's still a rare thing to have the chance to see an English play translated into Maori. The Merchant of Venice was turned into a te reo film and another Shakespeare play Troilus and Cressida was peformed in Maori here and in the UK. Now New Zealand writer Gary Henderson's play, Mo and Jess Kill Susie about a hostage drama, set in the near future, has been translated into te reo by Te Pou an Auckland Maori theatre company. Lynn Freeman takes some time with Ani-Piki Tuari and Krystal-lee Brown and finds out about translating into Te Reo and staging a production of this kind.
Apr 23, 2017 01:30 pm

New Cello Concerto from Gareth Farr

Three great-great-uncles of composer Gareth Farr were killed in the First World War and are buried in France and Belgium. His family's loss, and the deaths of all the men and women killed during the war to end all wars, are woven into Gareth's new Cello Concerto. Chemin des Dames will have its premiere with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra next month, and in September it will be performed in France. Lynn Freeman asks Gareth about this new work and about the personal story behind it.
Apr 23, 2017 12:40 pm

Papers Past: Divorce

Emerson Vandey is captivated by old newspapers. He's in charge of the National Library's Papers Past online collection, and every so often he brings in a few attention grabbing headlines for Standing Room Only. This time it's the reporting of divorces that's caught his eye.
Apr 23, 2017 12:25 pm

New Documentary for ANZAC Day

Beyond the Battalion airs on Maori Television on ANZAC day and tells that story of forgotten kiwi filmmaker Michael Havas who documented members of the 28th Maori Battalion's 1977 pilgrimage to the battlefields of World War Two and how Michael came to be the one to film it. Lynn Freeman speaks to the director of this new documentary Julian Arahanga - better known as an actor playing Nig Heke in Once Were Warriors - about his part in breathing new life into Michael Havas' story.
Apr 23, 2017 12:15 pm


Older stories

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Patterson to Donate $1.75 Million to School Libraries in 2017


James Patterson
ames Patterson will donate another $1.75 million to school libraries this year, the third installment of his School Library Campaign. Working in partnership with Scholastic Reading Club, the 2017 program focuses on teachers: 3,500 individual recipients will receive grants of $500 to enhance and supplement their classroom libraries. The grants will be awarded on a rolling basis throughout the year. All teachers in grades pre-K through 12 in U.S. schools can apply. Patterson hopes that teachers and students will share their experiences in their communities using #pattersonpledge.

The Patterson Pledge program was launched in 2015 as part of an ongoing effort to keep books and reading a priority for children in the U.S. Scholastic Reading Club will administer funding questionnaires to its network of 800,000 teachers and will match each dollar with "Bonus Points," which can be used to acquire books and other materials. Questionnaires must be submitted by July 31 and can be found here: To date, the bestselling author has donated $3.5 million to school libraries.

The Scholastic Teacher & Principal School Report: Equity in Education revealed that, regardless of school poverty level, 31% of teachers have fewer than 50 books in their classroom libraries and more than half of teachers (56%) use their own money to purchase books. Most-needed types of reading materials for classroom libraries are culturally relevant titles; books published in the last 3-5 years; multiple copies of popular titles; high-interest, low-reading-level books; and magazines.

"I'm thrilled that this year's round of grants recognizes teachers, who play such a vital role in student development," said Patterson. "Many kids rely solely on their classroom bookshelves for reading material, particularly in those schools without a library. And while it's been incredible to see the overwhelming response to my school library grants over the past two years, I'm excited to expand the reach of the program, and make a positive impact on teachers who are working with students all day, every day, in every school in the country."

Judy Newman, president of Scholastic Reading Club, observed that during the past two years, Patterson's "generosity has helped to support more than 900 school libraries nationwide, and Scholastic is proud to once again be a partner in this important program with a new round of grants to create more robust classroom libraries. Teachers know the importance of having rich classroom libraries that encourage more independent reading with the books kids choose for themselves. These grants will make an enormous difference in the reading lives of kids nationwide."

Off the Shelf

By Off the Shelf Staff    |   Friday, April 21, 2017
When you tell someone that you work in book publishing, their response is often: “Wow, it must be so great to be able to read books all day.” But the reality is quite the opposite—much to our chagrin, most of us don’t actually get to read books at our desks. As a result, we spend a lot of time wishing that we could still be reading the book that was so engrossing it almost made us miss our subway stop on the way to work. Here are the books we wish we were reading right now. READ MORE

The Tragedy of Google Books

The Tragedy Of Google Books: How ‘The Most Significant Humanities Project Of Our Time Was Dismantled In Court’

“Somewhere at Google there is a database containing 25 million books and nobody is allowed to read them.” James Somers runs down the history of the massive book-scanning project and of Authors Guild v. Google – and how “perhaps the most adventuresome class action settlement ever attempted” was taken apart despite the best interests of all the parties.

Getting A Southern Accent Right Is One Of The Big Challenges Of Making Audiobooks

“Southern accents are like hot sauces: dozens of varieties that can be difficult to distinguish, but they can be subtle or heavy-handed; they can add color or be a one-note distraction. … When some people detect their presence, that’s all they can focus on. In the wrong hands they can be dangerous.” John Adamian talks to a professional audiobook narrator about the pitfalls involved.

Latest news from The Bookseller

What Belongs to You
W H Smith Travel is to hold a gay literature promotion in major stores in June to mark the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in England and Wales.
Rebecca Swift, founder and director of The Literary Consultancy, has died.
Swift passed away peacefully on Tuesday 18th April, after a short illness.
Swift worked for seven years at Virago Press before co-founding The Literary Consultancy (TLC) together with Hannah Griffiths in 1996. The UK's first editorial consultancy for writers, its aim was to bridge the gap between writers, agents and publishers; Jenny Downham, Tina Seskis, Penny Pepper, Neamat Imam and Kerry Young are among the authors TLC has supported to publication. 
A debut published by Oneworld, Fever Dream by Argentinian novelist Samanta Schweblin, translated by Megan McDowell, has been shortlisted for the £50,000 Man Booker International Prize 2017.
Bernard Cornwell
Bernard Cornwell is to publish a new title with HarperCollins set in the Elizabethan period in a "dramatic new departure" for the author.
Sarah Perry
Sarah Perry and Clare Mackintosh have joined the likes of Jodi Picoult and Robert Harris on this summer’s Richard and Judy Book Club list with W H Smith.
Stephen Fry
Stephen Fry is publishing a retelling of the Greek myths with Michael Joseph this autumn. 

Publishers Lunch

Today's Meal

Stephany Evans has joined Ayesha Pande Literary as an agent, where she'll continue to represent her list of adult fiction and nonfiction. Previously, she was a principal at FinePrint Literary Management.

At Chronicle Books, Jeff Wiebe has been promoted to director of operations;
Sarah Billingsley has been promoted to executive editor of food and lifestyle; and Lauren Lubell has been promoted to industrial designer.


The Booker International Prize has announced its six-title shortlist:

Mathias Enard,
Compass, translated by Charlotte Mandell (Norton/Fitzcarraldo Editions)
David Grossman,
A Horse Walks Into a Bar, translated by Jessica Cohen (Knopf/Jonathan Cape)
Roy Jacobsen, The Unseen, translated by Don Bartlett and Don Shaw (Maclehose)
Dorthe Nors, Mirror, Shoulder, Signal, translated by Misha Hoekstra (Pushkin Press)
Amos Oz,
Judas, translated by Nicholas de Lange (HMH/Chatto & Windus)
Samanta Schweblin,
Fever Dream, translated by Megan McDowell (Riverhead/Oneworld)

Twelve winners of the European Union Prize for Literature were
announced including, from the UK (which will be ineligible for the prize post Brexit), author of The Year of Runaways Sunjeev Sahota.

Penguin Children's will launch a new imprint this fall, Penguin Workshop, run by president and publisher of Grosset & Dunlap and Warne, Francesco Sedita. The new line will publish "new voices and established brands for readers ages birth to 12." She says in the announcement, "Penguin Workshop is a laboratory for cultivating unique, new ideas. This has been my dream since I started at Penguin. I was an extremely reluctant reader as a child, and it's my goal to make books that make readers. To make books that make readers smile. And sometimes, to make readers hug their books."

The launch lists includes the start of a Girls Who Code middle grade series, and Muppets Meet the Classics: The Phantom of the Opera, the first in a new mash-up series. Some existing Penguin series, including Here's Hank by Henry Winkler and Lin Oliver and Who HQ will be published by Penguin Workshop going forward.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Auckland Writers Festival

16 - 21 May 2017


From Kupe to Captain Cook, the love of discovery is in our blood.  Whether our interests lie in science, history, art or theology, looking beyond our own horizon is part of who we are. This year’s Festival has a banquet of writers and thinkers including James Gleick, Lawrence Krauss, Raewyn Peart, Lloyd Geering, A.N. Wilson, David Schmid, Vincent O’Malley, Ben Schrader, Penelope Jackson and Anthony Byrt to satisfy our curiosity.
Check out the full programme online
View the programme

Riddles plus a fiddle in Paekakariki


Bill Manhire, Hannah Griffin and Norman Meehan will perform Tell Me My Name with Martin Riseley in Paekakariki on April 30.  The presentation is directed by Sarah Brodie.

‘Riddles plus a fiddle’, a music, theatre and literary show in two parts, is being staged in St Peter’s Hall, Paekakariki from 5.00 to 6.30 pm on Sunday 30 April.  The main bill is Tell Me My Name, a staged performance of new riddles by poet Bill Manhire, directed by Sara Brodie. 

The songs, which range from meditative ballads to joyful stomp, will be sung by Hannah Griffin, accompanied by violinist Martin Riseley, and pianist Norman Meehan, the show’s composer.  “Griffin’s voice is clear and true,” wrote reviewer Lorne Knight, “with piano and violin providing perfect support but rarely taking the focus from the delightfully crafted and typically elusive lines.”  The songs will be interspersed with readings and parables, charms and ciphers, from Bill Manhire. 
Tell Me My name will be preceded by a recital by Martin Riseley, one of New Zealand’s most distinguished musicians.  Martin has performed as soloist and concertmaster with leading orchestras in the USA, Canada and Great Britain, and in chamber groups with Yo Yo Ma and many other well-known performers. He is currently Associate Professor and Head of String, Violin and Orchestra at the New Zealand School of Music. Martin will perform three works for solo violin: Preludio and Gavotte in E by J.S. Bach; Variations on ‘Nel Cor Piu Non Me Sento’ by Paganini; and Burla, composed by Lyell Cresswell for Douglas Lilburn’s 80th birthday.
‘Riddles and a fiddle’ will start at 5.00 pm and finish at 6.30 pm, with doors opening at 4.30.  Tickets at $20 are available through or from the Paekakariki Fruit Shop.  There will be limited door sales. 

The Roundup with PW incl. Amazon is Coming to Australia

Bill O'Reilly's Publisher Standing by Their Man
Bill O’Reilly has been a mainstay of the Henry Holt list for years and, at the moment, that is not changing. The Macmillan imprint told PW that it has no intention of altering its support of the bestselling author, despite his dismissal from Fox News.
more »

Penguin Press to Pub ‘Hillaryland’
The Penguin Press nabbed world rights to the account of Lissa Muscatine, Hillary Clinton's former chief speechwriter of 25 years.
more » »

Amazon is Coming to Australia: The online retail giant unveiled plans to roll out its full list of services in Australia over the next few years.

University Libraries Get Modernized: From U.C. Berkeley to Harvard University, the digital revolution is changing libraries on college campuses.

A Word to Define Book Hoarding: There is a term in Japanese that identifies people who buy more books than they can read in one lifetime: tsundoku.

Climate Change Meets Coloring Books: The latest trend in the adult coloring book craze is illustrated data about air pollution, rising sea levels, and more.

Three Small Books with Big Ideas: Check out these quick reads on hefty topics including tyranny, the First Amendment, and Wall Street.


From Vanity Fair:
The Surprising Inspiration for Eloise Illustrator Hilary Knight's Career.
Click here
From Book Riot:
No Wrong Way: 30 Children's Books About Non-Traditional Families.
Click here
From Brightly:
Rethinking Reading Levels: Some Practical Advice from the Experts.
Click here
From the L.A. Review of Books:
Everyone Grows Up: A Conversation with Brian Selznick.
Click here
From First Book:
Encouraging Literacy and Leadership with Games.
Click here
From the Hollywood Reporter:
Ricky Gervais to narrate animated feature The Willoughbys based on Lois Lowry's book.
Click here
From the New York Times:
How the Netflix Show 13 Reasons Why Led to Memes, T-Shirts and Debate.
Click here
From School Library Journal:
Middle School Collections in the Public Library: A New Trend?
Click here
From Literary Hub:
31 Vintage Posters That Demand You Pick up a Book.
Click here
From Bookish:
10 Novels in Verse Every YA Fan Should Read.
Click here

Penguin Workshop Imprint
To Launch This Fall

This fall, Penguin Young Readers will launch a new children’s imprint, Penguin Workshop, helmed by Francesco Sedita. The emphasis will be on accessible titles and brands for every type of reader, from ages 0–12.