Blog Archives

Editorial – Issue 74

Love and theft At first glance, what does and doesn’t constitute literary plagiarism looks pretty straightforward. Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh certainly thought so. They tried to prove in a London court that Dan Brown took “at least 15 core…
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Editorial – Issue 73

Guest editorial Against complacency When I arrived in New Zealand 28 years ago I confessed to an eminent seismologist that, although an avid reader, I knew little about New Zealand writing. Fortunately for me he was a Renaissance man with…
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Editorial – Issue 70

Review and be damned There is in Britain a financial journalist called Peter Jay, who, when he was economics editor of The Times, famously dismissed a sub-editor’s querying of his incomprehensible copy by informing him haughtily that the article was…
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Editorial – Issue 68

The dispraise problem   Witty essays by Iain Sharp and Paula Morris in recent issues of Landfall (May and November 2004) have again brought up that perennial hot topic – literary reviewing in New Zealand – and prompted us to…
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Editorial – Issue 69

Miffed, maltreated and murderous In our last editorial we looked at reviewing from the relatively unimpassioned viewpoint of what’s good for New Zealand writing, reviewers and readers. But what, to misapply Freud, do authors want? The question is nowhere near…
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Editorial – Issue 66

How not to run a book launch It’s one of life’s great mysteries why, when many publishers are cutting back on book launches on the grounds that they don’t cover their own costs, invitations to these events continue to pile…
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Editorial – Issue 65

Dark horses and wild cards  In July I attended the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, held in Auckland at the Hilton. It’s the night we in the book trade celebrate writers, poets, books, reviewers, first books, sponsors, even publishers. There…
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Editorial – Issue 64

Catering for the “common reader” The October 1991 issue of New Zealand Books reviewed 6 titles. Twelve years and 57 issues later, the figure was almost exactly the same: NZB October 2003 covered 38 new books. So what’s changed? Certainly…
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Editorial – Issue 63

A funny sort of pride This is an unusual issue of New Zealand Books, dominated by the loss of two of our pre-eminent writers. When Janet Frame died in January, we decided to commemorate her achievement in this June issue…
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Editorial – Issue 62

First person singular It’s often said that everyone has a novel inside them. That they have, of course, is a story – their own story – and nowadays the popular way of telling it is not as fiction, thinly disguised…
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