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Writing the Last Page

  • Titirangi War Memorial Hall 500 South Titirangi Road Auckland, Auckland, 0604 New Zealand (map)
David Slack.jpg

For something we all ultimately experience, writers often skirt around the subject of death. But should it not be explored, discussed and honoured? In Death and Dying in New Zealand, essayists delved into how we deal with the end to life. Poet Vana Manasiasdis explores death in her collection The Grief Almanac: A Sequel. Academic Dr Kiri Edge, Emma Johnson and Vana Manasiadis join David Slack to explore the ways we talk about 21st century death and dying in Aotearoa.

Dr Kiri Edge (Ngāti Maniapoto) is a community researcher based at Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, University of Auckland. Completed in 2017, Kiri’s PhD, Different Coloured Tears: Bicultural Bereavement Perspectives, explored bereavement pathways of Māori and Pākehā bicultural whānau. Kiri is mama to Matai and his badly-behaved cat, Buddy. 

David Slack is an author, satirist, public speaker and broadcaster. He was a speechwriter in the Prime Minister’s office and is a contributing columnist for RNZ’s Panel and a Sunday Star Times.


Vana Manasiadis is a Greek/New Zealand poet, translator and lecturer who moves between Aotearoa and Greece. She authored Ithaca Island Bay Leaves: A Mythistorima and The Grief Almanac: A Sequel. As co-editor of the Seraph Press Translation Series, she has translated from the Greek for Ναυάγια/Καταφύγια: Shipwrecks/Shelters: Six Contemporary Greek Poets and co-edited Tātai Whetū: Seven Māori Women Poets in Translation.

Emma Johnson is the editor at Freerange Press. Death and Dying in New Zealand and Kai and culture: Food stories from Aotearoa are some of her recent publications. She is currently working on the second volume of the Radical Futures series, as well as a book of travel writing and maps focused on Ōtautahi Christchurch.

Saturday and Sunday Sessions
8.30am - 5pm
Titirangi War Memorial Hall

Full Day Pass Includes 8 sessions $120.00 | $100 concession
Individual Sessions $18.00 | $15 concession
4 Session Pass | $60 | $50 concession
Tickets available from iTICKET*

A delicious lunch catered by Loaves and Fishes Online orders essential: by 1 September | $22

*transaction fees apply

Earlier Event: 7 September
Book Launch | Native Son by Witi Ihimaera
Later Event: 8 September
Writers Clinics