Tayi Tibble (Writing for the Page, 2017)

I learnt to listen to criticism with humility, to trust the intelligence and generosity of my classmates and to have faith in the work and my skill as a writer.

Tayi writes: 'The year was amazing. It was hard and it made you feel stupid and crazy every second week, but every alternate week it was an absolute pleasure and a privilege. It was just so fun getting to hang out with other literary types and talk and gossip and complain seriously about writing and literature for a whole year.

'And my writing developed so much during the course. Early on…my course convener Chris Price said that this course was less about strengthening your voice and more about extending what you could do. So I took that very seriously and tried hard and conscientiously to push myself and extend my craft. I learnt quickly to listen to criticism with humility, to trust the intelligence and generosity of my classmates and to have faith in the work and my skill as a writer. I think in the end it was developing this willingness to experiment, and in return learning to be okay with writing some dodgy embarrassing poems in the process, that resulted in a successful year.'

(excerpted from 'A kind of imaginary collective'; an interview with five writers in Starling #5, with thanks. Read the full interview)

Bio: Tayi Tibble (Te Whānau ā Apanui/Ngāti Porou) was awarded the 2017 Adam Foundation Prize in Creative Writing for the best manuscript in the MA Writing for the Page cohort. That manuscript became her first poetry collection Poūkahangatūs; published by Victoria University Press in 2018.

Her poetry has appeared in Starling, Landfall, The Spinoff, Poetry Magazine, and The Wireless, and she was invited to read at the 2018 ANZAC Day Dawn Service at Wellington’s Pukeahu National War Memorial Park.

Read more:

Victoria University Press author page

'Identity Politics' (Poetry Magazine)

'For a cigarette and a blanket' (The Wireless)

'Blood pacts' and 'Kaleidoscopes' (Starling #1 and 2)

'Hoki mai' (The Spinoff)