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NZ author Barbara Anderson dies

Sunday 24 Mar 2013 7:58 p.m.

Acclaimed New Zealand author Barbara Anderson (Robert Cross)

Acclaimed New Zealand author Barbara Anderson (Robert Cross)

Acclaimed New Zealand author Barbara Anderson, who was first published in her sixties, has died aged 87.

The Arts Foundation has described her as one of the country's most celebrated fiction writers, published to national and international acclaim.

She took Bill Manhire's creative writing course in 1983 and her first collection of short stories, I Think We Should Go into the Jungle, was published in 1989.

Her memoir Getting There: An Autobiography was published in 2008.

Manhire tweeted that Anderson died peacefully in Auckland this morning.

The Victoria University writing course, the International Institute of Modern Letters, also paid tribute on twitter:

"Our dear friend Barbara Anderson died today. She was born in 1926, published her first book in 1989, her last in 2008. We'll miss her badly."

Writer Elizabeth Knox has praised Anderson's ear for dialogue and "deeply humane view" of life.

"Barbara started late, but she was always a writer in waiting, and she brought to her work the lifetime experiences of a sharp and worldly observer of communities, workplaces, families and individuals."

Anderson's novels "with their combination of vitality, gaiety and gravity, are unique in our literature", Knox said.

Anderson won and was nominated for several literary awards and all her novels were published in the United Kingdom.

Otago University awarded her an Honorary Doctorate in 2009.

In 2011, she was awarded the Arts Foundation Icon Award, its highest honour.


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