Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Two Best First Book Awards for VUP Authors

We're very excited to announce that two of our writers, Helen Heath and Lawrence Patchett, have been awarded Best First Book Awards at this year's New Zealand Post Book Awards.

Helen Heath has won the NZSA Jessie Mackay Best First Book for Poetry award for her collection of poetry, Graft.

Poet, Helen Heath (photo by Kate McPherson)

Lawrence Patchett has won the NZSA Hubert Church Best First Book for Fiction award for his book of short stories, I Got His Blood on Me.

Fiction writer, Lawrence Patchett (photo by Robert Cross)

Publisher Fergus Barrowman says, ‘We’re delighted that two of our first books have done so well, and congratulate both our writers on winning these prestigious awards.’

Poet Helen Heath, whose poetry collection features a number of poems about scientists and was also the first book of poetry to ever be shortlisted for the 2013 Royal Society of New Zealand Science Book Prize, says 'Considering the strenth of many of the first poetry books this year, I'm immensely humbled by the judge's decision to pick Graft for this award.'

Fiction writer Lawrence Patchett, whose collection tells stories of time-travel, frontier conflict and early Pakeha and Maori relationships, says, ‘It’s a great boost for me and encouragement to keep writing, I’m really thrilled about it.’

Both writers are graduates of the International Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University, with Lawrence Patchett holding both a Masters and Doctorate from the Institute. Helen Heath holds a Masters and is currently enrolled in a PhD.

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