New Zealand Society of Authors

The New Zealand Society of Authors (PEN New Zealand Inc.) promotes and protects the interests of New Zealand writers. It was founded as the New Zealand PEN Centre (Poets, Essays and Novelists) in 1934.[1] It broadened its scope and became the New Zealand Society of Authors in 1994,[2] under the presidency of writer Philip Temple.

New Zealand Society of Authors Te Puni Kaituhi o Aotearoa PEN NZ
TypeAdvocate for New Zealand writers
Region served
New Zealand
1,400 (2016)[1]
Chief Executive
Jenny Nagle
Key people
Mandy Hager (National President)
Formerly called
New Zealand PEN Centre[1]

There are eight branches covering all regions of New Zealand.[1] Branches were established in Wellington and Auckland first, and later in Otago and Canterbury.

The Otago Branch was established in Dunedin in 1982 under the leadership of writer and artist Christodoulos Moisa, who had moved to there from Auckland. He was helped by poet Graham Lindsay. Moisa had been nominated for membership by Auckland Star editor and writer David Ballantyne and Prof. Bernard Brown before he left Auckland to live in Dunedin. The branch used to meet once a month in the staffroom of the Hocken Building, where Moisa worked as an artist on the Ban Nadi Archeological project of the Otago University Department of Anthropology. Among its first members were Graham Lindsay, Hone Tuwhare (poet), Bill Dean (lecturer of English), Peter Olds (poet), Owen Marshall (writer) and Cilla McQueen (poet).[citation needed]

The Canterbury Branch was established in Christchurch in 1984 under the leadership of Moisa, who had moved to the city from Dunedin. It met once a month at the Media Club Rooms in Armagh Street and in various other venues around Christchurch. Among its first members were Margaret Mahy, Gavin Bishop, Elsie Locke, Michael Harlow and Glenn Busch.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e "About us" . New Zealand Society of Authors. Archived from the original on 7 February 2013. Retrieved 12 April 2017.
  2. ^ "A Short History of the NZSA (PEN NZ) Inc" . New Zealand Society of Authors. Retrieved 3 March 2013.


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