KIN’s columnist(s) of the Year 2016 (a series) — Part 1
By Alan Tristram
I’ve been asked (well, auto-suggested in fact) to pick a ‘Columnist of the Year.’ But it’s got to be ‘Columnists.’
Because all I can say is that we’ve now built up an unparalleled group of committed writers, who bring you some of the best-informed, incisive writing, in New Zealand.
It’s hard to know where to start and where to stop.
Our Kapiti-based women columnists are among the best — Mandy Hager, Prue Hyman, Gill Ward and Pam Kessler.
Mandy Hager, like her brother Nicky Hager, is very strong on political and social issues. She’s also one of NZ’s foremost writers of teenage fiction; and among many other awards has received a Katherine Mansfield Fellowship.
Then we come to Prue Hyman, a committed Green and high-powered academic, who brings a fantastic depth of analysis to her KIN articles.
Her analysis of complicated electoral issues brings insight and clarity to coverage of our sometimes almost impenetrable political systems — STV, (Single Transferable Vote) in Kapiti Coast elections; and MMP (Mixed-Member Proportional) in general elections.
Gill Ward (pictured above), is a poet, who was a founding member of the main Kapiti poetry group — Poets to the People.
Her monthly KIN column is a compendium of poetry information and news.
Pam Kessler (on the left), was a key figure in starting up the Calligraphers of Kapiti a few years ago, and this addition to the local artistic community continues to flourish.
Her fascinating, graphically illlustrated columns highlight local talent, and visiting calligraphers who run workshops. Pam has also provided some Christmas calligraphy ideas and welcome contributions for Art W0rk of the Week.
All four of these columnists unfailingly meet deadlines; write clearly; and write with prose that could fly on the wings of angels (Editor’s flight of fancy).
Special mention also to former Kapiti Library Manager, now Turangi-based, columnist Leslie Clague (0n the right, not her natural political ground!).
Over the years she has contributed high interest articles on topics from travel and family, to book reviews and 1080 concerns.
(To be continued)