Whiti Hereaka, from Wellington, held the 2012 Summer Residency at the Michael King Writers Centre, from January to mid-March.
Whiti is a playwright, novelist and screenwriter who has won many awards even though she is at an early stage of her career. She has been admitted as a barrister and solicitor of the High Court of New Zealand, although she usually works at the Ministry of Culture and Heritage. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing (Scriptwriting) from the International Institute of Modern Letters.
She has had several plays produced in Wellington: Fallow (Tawata Productions 2005), Collective Agreement (Young and Hungry 2005), I Ain’t Nothing But/A Glimmer in the Dark She Said (Open Book Productions for STAB 2006),Te Kaupoi(Bush Collective 2010)and For Johnny(Young and Hungry 2011). Te Kaupoi was also performed at the Hawkins theatre in Papakura in 2010.
Whiti won Best New Play by a Maori Playwright, Adam Play Awards in 2010 for Te Kaupoiand again in 2011 for Rona and Rabbit on the Moon.
In 2007, Whiti was the writer in residence at Randell Cottage in Wellington where she worked on her debut novel; The Graphologist’s Apprentice, which was published by Huia Press. The Graphologist’s Apprentice was shortlisted for First Book in the Commonwealth Writers Prize (Asia/Pacific region) 2011.
Whiti is a member of Writers Block, Wellington and is a trustee for Baggage Arts Charitable Trust (BACT).
Update November 2012: Whiti was awarded the 2012 Bruce Mason Award for outstanding emerging playwright.