AUT University's first creative writing centre ...
Established the Centre for Modern Writing and AUT's first Master of Creative Writing.
In 2008 John Cranna established the Centre for Modern Writing at AUT University and also founded the Masters of Creative Writing programme. The course was voted best taught post-graduate course at the University by AUT students.
The Centre was located with the national office of the NZ Society of Authors in the central Auckland CBD. Establishment of the Centre was sponsored by the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Philip Sallis, and the Dean of Creative Technologies, Kathy Garden.
Cranna recruited a number of NZ’s best known writers to teach and mentor at the Centre, including Owen Marshall, Peter Wells, Tina Shaw, Sue Reidy, Sue McCauley, Roger Hall, Judith White, Kelly Ana Morey and Owen Scott.
The Centre was the first in New Zealand to bring large numbers of professional book authors into an academic environment to teach students. Its primary focus was on imparting craft skills, rather than teaching academic theory. Several graduates of the course have gone on to publishing success.
The programme was also notable for the fact that students were matched, one on one, to a leading NZ author as a personal mentor, but in addition, established NZ writers of the stature of Owen Marshall, Peter Wells, and Roger Hall, came into the centre to run specialist craft and technique workshops.
The Centre was formally launched by the AUT Vice Chancellor, Derrick McCormack, leading childrens' author Tessa Duder, and writer Kapka Kassabova.