Wednesday May 31, 2017
University big winner at book awards By Emma McAuliffe
Victoria University Press had a successful stint at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards earlier this month, winning all five categories it was nominated in. The publishers won awards in fiction for The Wish Child by Catherine Chidgey, non-fiction for My Father’s Island by Adam Dudding and Can You Tolerate This? by Ashleigh Young and poetry for Hera Lindsay Bird by Hera Lindsay Bird and Fits and Starts by Andrew Johnston. Cather ine won the Acor n Foundation Fiction Prize worth $50,000. Publisher, Fergus Barrowman said he was very pleased with the results. “Having worked with these writers, in some cases for many years, I know that none of these were quick or easy books to write. “It’s been a pleasure and a privilege to publish them and it’s a big thrill to see them receive this deserved public recognition,” he said. Catherine, Ashleigh and Hera are Victoria University alumni and are also recipients of Victoria’s International Institute of Modern Letters Adam Foundation Prize in Creative Writing. As well as winning the Best
Non-Fiction category, but I just want to be able to read without feeling the Ashleigh also edited three of the winning pressure to comment on books for Victoria everything,” Ashleigh said. The Ockham New ZeaUniversity Press: land Book Awards are New The Wish Child, Zealand’s premier literary Hera Lindsay Bird honours for works written by and My Father’s New Zealanders and are supIsland. ported by Ockham Residential, She said she was Creative New Zealand, The surprised by her Acorn Foundation, Book Tokens win. (NZ) Ltd and the Royal Society “It’s amazing. Te Aparangi. We weren’t expecting to do as well as we did. I had not been expecting to win at all. “There are usually a couple of books shortlisted in the non-fiction section that are a little more leftfield but they never win. It’s really affirming to win,” she said. Ash leigh sa id she hoped to use her prize money to take time off to write. “I want to finish work on my new poetry book. I need some time and space away to write. “I also really want to Ashleigh Young was a winner at the read. It’s really won- Ockham New Zealand Book Awards. derful to hear writers PHOTO: SUPPLIED
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By Julia Czerwonatis
This week the Independent Herald talked to Gillian Mills who is an independent chartered accountant. Gillian is also the mother of two teenage girls and Pippin leader at the Johnsonville GirlGuiding group. The SubUrban co-worker told us how she manages to maintain a work-life-balance and why GirlGuiding teaches little girls essential skills for their future. Why didn’t you want to give up your profession?
After I had my girls I was working part-time in town, but with all this driving back and forth, parking in town, and all that I just didn't make any money. So I ended up wondering why I was doing this and where is this going. I knew I enjoyed being an accountant and I wanted to maintain it. However, it’s a lot of pressure; you can’t be the best employer and a full-time mum. I needed a different work-lifebalance, and so I started my own business.
Experience Marsden Karori
14 J une
With accountant Gillian Mills
You worked full-time as an accountant for different companies before having children. What happened then?
I know a few mums who did that, but I love my job. You have to undergo a lot of training and achieve various requirements to become an accountant. If you give it up for your family, you give up quite a lot, and so I wanted to find a way to be both: a mother and an accountant.
How did you start your business mg accountant?
I was able to get a couple of clients in the early days who gave me the confidence to do it. Then I approached a woman who had an accountancy business in place. She was amazing, and she became my tutor. The New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants has a process in place if you want to run your own accountancy
business. They make sure you have enough support around you. My friends and family backed me the entire time and reassured me that I could do it. It was a process that I eased into.
When did GirlGuiding come into play?
When my oldest girl was about five, she was invited to come along to the Pippins which are the year five to six GirlGuides. As all volunteering organisations, they were looking for help. I instantly could see that this was a really good thing and I was drawn to supporting it.
What do you think is good about GirlGuiding?
They are offering a different social interaction than the girls might get at school or home. It is non-competitive, an out of school environment, the girls get to meet different kinds of people,
and the experiences they get are so wonderful. Since I have girls I know, it’s good for them to just be themselves and not be under pressure of imaging, not having to worry about what the world thinks about them. It advocates girls to grow confidence. I’m keen to encourage girls to have a voice and be aware that they are awesome.
So are you satisfied with how things have worked out?
My work-life-balance is fabulous. I’m incredibly lucky with what I have. I love doing accounting, being a guide and supporting my girls as they grow up. Both my girls have made huge progress and achieved a lot of wonderful things with the GirlGuides, and my oldest daughter is a leader now too. We can talk about leading as she has a different kind of skill set, which is wonderful.
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Independent Herald 31-05-17