Ko Taranaki te maunga,
Ko Tokomaru te waka,
Ko Urenui te awa,
Ko Ngāti Mutunga rāua ko Ngāti Tama ōku iwi,
Nō Taranaki au.
Ko Stephanie Matuku ahau.
I hope you enjoy reading my stories. I find the act of writing hard work, although inspiration for story ideas comes fairly easily – I’m always daydreaming about something fantastical!
The backdrop of my beautiful country is ever-present in my writing and often becomes a character in its own right. If you get the chance to visit Aotearoa (or perhaps you are already lucky enough to live here), make sure you go out into the bush and look up amongst the tree ferns. See how the patterns of the leaves are etched on the sky. Breathe in the warm scent of fallen leaves, damp and dark underfoot. Feel the breeze on your cheek, whispering softly in your ear. You can hear those stories if you listen closely.
So listen. Listen.
Steph Matuku is an award-winning writer from Taranaki, New Zealand.
She spent fifteen years in radio writing advertising copy before deciding to branch out and write pieces that were longer than thirty seconds.
Her first children’s play, “A Story of Rona’ won a Playmarket award and has been performed by schools throughout New Zealand. Her script for the 2016 48 Hour Short Film Competition “A Bro’s Life” won the regional heats, going on to the National Finals.
Selected articles have made an appearance in Kiwiparent Magazine and she has had children’s short stories and plays appear in “The School Journal” and the “Annual”. She is also a ghost-writer for many companies around New Zealand, creating business articles and marketing blogs.
Steph won a place on the Maori Literature Trust’s writing incubator programme ‘He Papa Tupu’ with Huia Publishers, and was mentored by renowned novelist and playwright, Whiti Hereaka. The result is her debut YA novel, “Flight of the Fantail”. It will be published in 2018 with Huia Publishers.
She completed a feature film script “How Tui and Kae Found Their Mother”, thanks to seed funding from the New Zealand Writers Guild and the NZ Film Commission and is now working on another book about Whetū Toa and her adventures with her farmyard friends.