Hinemoana Baker (Writing for the Page, 2002)
The sense of being alumni of the course is still strong and nourishing. The differerence it has made to my writerly self-esteem is immense.
Hinemoana writes: 'I'd have to say the best thing I got out of my MA year was that I wrote a book. Of course I made friends, some I now consider whānau. But I love a deadline, me, and that looming November date was just the kind of someone-(Bill)-is-expecting-something-from-me daily ass-kicking that I needed. I've since published two more collections, thanks to the support of my writing group, several of whom have also been IIML students.
'The sense of being alumni of the course is still strong and nourishing. The Institute keeps me brightly and bouncily in the loop - the "What's On" type stuff, and the occasional invitation to speak or take a workshop. Out in the real world, meeting other writers who've done the course is always a moment of instant bonding. The difference the course has made to my writerly self-esteem is immense. In my darkest moments of self-doubt I can still say to myself "at least I got into the MA." '
Bio: Hinemoana has connections to Ngāti Raukawa (Ngāti Tukorehe); Ngāti Toa Rangatira; Te āti Awa (Ngāti Mutunga, Ngāti Tama); and Kāi Tahu (Kāti Moki Tuarua). She has written for page, stage and film. Poetry written for her MA manuscript was published in her first collection mātuhi | needle, 2004. The book was co-published by Te Herenga Waka University Press and Lord of the Rings star Viggo Mortensen's publishing house, Perceval Press. Subsequent poetry collections kōiwi kōiwi | bone bone and waha | mouth (2014), were published by VUP in 2010 and 2014.
Hinemoana's writing and music have taken her all around New Zealand for readings and performances, and offshore as well. In 2009 she was Arts Queensland Poet in Residence, and in 2010 she spent three months in the United States as a writer in residence at the University of Iowa, as part of their International Writing Programme. In 2012 she returned to the US to read and perform in New York City, and travelled to Europe as one of those writers representing New Zealand at the 2012 Frankfurt Bookfair.
Hinemoana works as an editor, a teacher of creative writing and a smoking cessation counsellor. She was Victoria University of Wellington's 2014 Writer in Residence. She has edited several online and print anthologies and released several albums of original music and more experimental sound art.She works in English, Māori and more recently German, the latter in collaboration with German poet and sound performer Ulrike Almut Sandig. She is currently living in Berlin, where she was 2016 Creative New Zealand Berlin Writer in Residence, and completing a PhD at Potsdam University.
Her fourth poetry collection, Funkhaus, was published by Te Herenga Waka University Press in 2020 and shortlisted for the Mary and Peter Biggs Award for Poetry.