William (Bill) Direen is a writer and a well-known figure in New Zealand music circles. Originally from Christchurch and Dunedin, Direen has recently been living in Paris and previously spent several years in Berlin. He is best known as a poet and musician, but he has also written theatre scripts, lyrics, stories, essays, short and long fiction. He has published extensively across all of these genres. His longer works have been experimental and are often trans-generic (making use of poetry, fiction, history, autobiography, mythology and monologue). In 2006, Direen launched the annual international literary magazine Percutio, which is dedicated to aspects of the creative process and to works that bridge cultures. While he is in Auckland he plans to work on a new trans-generic novel about an “expatriated” New Zealander who embarks on a journey from London back to New Zealand. It is the reverse of the journey of a character in his 2008 novel Enclosures. Direen holds a six-month residency, which is a partnership between The University of Auckland, Creative New Zealand and the Michael King Writers’ Centre. It aims to foster New Zealand writing by providing an opportunity for an established author to work full-time on a major project in an academic environment.
For further information about Bill, visit his web page William (Bill) Direen.
Update May 2011: Click here to view a video (filmed by Stuart Page) of the launch of Devonport: A Diary, published by The Holloway Press. This limited edition, hand-make book is a diary of Bill Direen’s first few weeks at the Michael King Writers’ Centre. The book was launched by Sam Elworthy (MKWC chairman) and Peter Simpson, from The Holloway Press.