Frankie McMillan at VERSE night, 2016.
Frankie McMillan is a New Zealand short story writer and poet. Her short story collection, The Bag Lady’s Picnic and other stories, was published in 2001 by Shoal Bay Press. ‘This writing and these stories,’ Weekend Herald Penelope Bieder wrote, ‘announce the arrival of a strong new voice on the New Zealand literary scene’. Frankie’s first poetry first collection, Dressing for the Cannibals (Sudden Valley Press, 2009), was described by Christchurch Press Book News Michael Harlow as ‘full of surprises that quicken the heart as well as the head’. Glasgow Review of Books described her second collection, There are no horses in heaven (Canterbury UP, 2015), as the ‘most startling poetry book I have read for years’.
In 2005 Frankie was awarded the Creative New Todd Bursary. Her work was selected for two consecutive years for Best New Zealand Fiction anthologies (2008 & 2009) and Best New Zealand Poems in both 2013 and 2015 (online, Victoria University). She has been a recipient of the Ursula Bethell writing residency at Canterbury University (2014). Other awards include winner of the New Zealand Poetry Society International Poetry Competition (2009), and winner of the New Zealand Flash Fiction Competition (2013 & 2015). Most recently she was awarded the New Zealand Society of Authors’ Peter & Dianne Beatson Fellowship (2019).
In 2016 Frankie presented a paper on flash fiction in New Zealand at the 14th International Short Story Conference in Shanghai and in New Zealand launched My Mother and the Hungarians, and other small fictions (Canterbury University Press), which was longlisted for the Ockham Award for fiction. She was the 2017 University of Auckland writer-in-residence, awarded in conjunction with the Michael King Writers’ Centre. She teaches at the Hagley Writers’ Institute in Christchurch.
Frankie’s fifth collection is The Father of Octopus Wrestling, and other small fictions (CUP, 2019. She is currently working on a novella set in a New Zealand church-run children’s home, looking at the lives of both the children and staff.
Read NZ Te Pou Muramura writer page
Hagley Writers’ Institute website
Radio NZ interview discussing The Father of Octupus Wrestling, Frankie’s new novella and her Peter & Dianne Beatson Fellowship (Sept, 2019)
NZ Poetry Shelf review of The Father of Octopus Wrestling (Oct, 2019)
NZ Poetry Shelf review of My Mother and the Hungarians (Oct, 2016)
NZ Listener review of My Mother and the Hungarians (Oct, 2016)
Radio New Zealand interview (Aug, 2014)
Radio New Zealand interview discussing flash fiction and playful poetry (Sept, 2013)