Somehow I've managed to be just as busy this year as I usually am when I work a regular job. I always seem to have several projects vying for attention, and this year they include the Misconceptions web series, a top-secret web series, short stories, essays, a secret path adventure book, co-editing the essay anthology 'Otherhood, and progressing a novel that may or may not turn out to be any good.
The second Misconceptions web series - Unravelling Anxiety - is out now via NZ Herald. Director Charlotte Wanhill is the mastermind behind this project, and I wrote the articles that accompany the webisodes. My secret path adventure book The ManyEnding Story was shortlisted for the Laura Solomon Cuba Press Prize, my essay Who Shot The Last Huia was published on The Spinoff, and I handed the second draft of my novel to a manuscript assessor just before flying off to Hungary for the Hungarian Writers Residency.
While I'm here I'm learning about wolves - and launching a crowdfunding campaign to pay the 'Otherhood contributors. When I get back I'll continue juggling my projects, and teach a couple of fiction classes to University of Otago students and staff.
But it hasn't all been work - I've also had fun in the University of Otago Print Room, I got to get my portrait taken by photographer Graham Warman, and I've regularly been catching up with the other Arts Fellows for coffees and chats. And while I'm in Hungary I'm getting as much sight-seeing in around my writing as I can, too.
2023 Burns fellow Kathryn van Beek has an MA from Victoria University Wellington - Te Herenga Waka’s International Institute of Modern Letters. She is a winner of the Mindfood Short Story Competition and the Headland Prize. Her collection of short stories, Pet, is available as a podcast, and her work has also appeared in Overland, takahē, Newsroom, and the Sunday Star-Times. She lives in UNESCO City of Literature Ōtepoti Dunedin with her two rescue cats.