Men­tor­ship for poet

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By JES­SICA ETHERIDGE

CARIN Smeaton’s prose takes a look at life’s smaller mo­ments.

It is smat­tered with slang from the con­ver­sa­tions she has with peo­ple on Auck­land’s streets.

Her favourite self-writ­ten piece, ti­tled Panchi Bawara, talks of en­coun­ters with ‘‘gob­lins’’ and ‘‘rumpel­stilt­skins’’ on Karanga­hape Rd, and those who are ‘‘skint like da man on the con­crete’’.

‘‘Some peo­ple have asked me: ‘ Do you rap?’

‘‘On­line, where they can’t ac­tu­ally see I’m a white, mid­dle-aged fe­male.

‘‘Which is the good thing about writ­ing, right?

‘‘They don’t see who you are, they’re just read­ing what’s in­side of you and it doesn’t re­ally mat­ter your skin tone or how old you are,’’ she says.

‘‘So the di­alect com­pen­sates for me not be­ing able to say it out loud, in the flesh.’’

Smeaton writes un­der the pen name of Nira C but has had works pub­lished un­der both names in po­etry col­lec­tions and on­line.

‘‘It’s quite heavy on the slang and cussing,’’ she says of her work.

‘‘It’s also con­ver­sa­tional – I’ll write it down as I hear it be­cause my nar­ra­tives are mostly about what peo­ple are say­ing to me or them telling me a story about what has hap­pened to them.

‘‘I like writ­ing be­cause you have a voice and you can ba­si­cally say what you feel.

‘‘You can ac­tu­ally ex­press your­self,’’ the mother-of-two says.

Smeaton will be men­tored by renowned Auck­land play­wright Vivi­enne Plumb af­ter suc­cess­fully gain­ing a New Zealand So­ci­ety of Au­thors 2015 men­tor­ship.

The scheme will see Smeaton given feed­back by Plumb on her manuscript, Tales from the Gut­ter of my Heart.

The NZSA says 75 ap­pli­ca­tions were re­ceived but just 13 men­tor­ships were on of­fer.

Pt Che­va­lier comic artist Sally Bollinger will be men­tored by Ant Sang, of the same sub­urb, un­der the scheme.

Sang is well-known as the char­ac­ter cre­ator for an­i­mated tele­vi­sion show Bro’ Town.

Bollinger has al­ready had a taste of scriptwrit­ing suc­cess.

She, along with younger sis­ter Elsie and friends Min­nie Grace and Claris Ja­cobs, cre­ated Shake­spearean web se­ries Noth­ing Much To Do ( Auck­land City Har­bour News, De­cem­ber 19 2014).

The se­ries’ pop­u­lar­ity saw fans do­nate more than $23,000 to the group for a sec­ond sea­son.

Grey Lynn poet Carin Smeaton will be men­tored through the New Zealand So­ci­ety of Au­thors.

Pho­tos: JESS ETHERIDGE.

Comic artist Sally Bollinger of Pt Che­va­lier will be men­tored by Ant Sang.

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