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Maris O'Rourke

Maris O'Rourke 2-531Maris O'Rourke began writing in 2008, with immediate success in a number of adult poetry competitions, anthologies and international literary magazines. Her first poetry collection for adults, Singing With Both Throats, was published by David Ling in 2013 to good reviews and in 2015 she won the IWW’s Kathleen Grattan Prize for a Sequence of Poems with her sequence Motherings.

Her first children’s books were the very successful series of Lillibutt books illustrated by Claudia Pond Eyley and published by David Ling Publishing of Duck Creek Press: Lillibutt’s Big Adventure (2012); Lillibutt’s Te Araroa Adventure (2014), Lillibutt’s Australian Adventure (2015) and Te Haerenga Maia a Riripata i Te Araroa (2016). The latter was a finalist in the 2017 National Book Awards and has been distributed to all Te Kohanga Reo and Kura Kaupapa Māori.
Maris is an enthusiastic performer and has run many sessions in schools using her children’s books and poetry, as well as appearing at numerous adult poetry festivals and poetry conferences.
She is currently working on a memoir with the working title Zig Zags and Leapfrogs, to be published by David Ling Publishing in 2019, and her second poetry collection Motherings.


Selected bibliography:
  • Our Superbaby! illustrated by Helen Bell, GTMpress (2018)
  • Te Haerenga Maia a Riripata i Te Araroa illustrated by Claudia Pond Eyley, Māori by Ani Wainui (Duck Creek Press, 2016)
  • Lillibutt’s Australian Adventure, illustrated by Claudia Pond Eyley (Duck Creek Press, 2015)
  • Lillibutt’s Te Araroa Adventure, illustrated by Claudia Pond Eyley (Duck Creek Press, 2014)
  • Kiwi As (Ocean Books, 2013)
  • Lillibutt’s Big Adventure,  illustrated by Claudia Pond Eyley (Duck Creek Press, 2012).
  • IWW Children’s Poem, winner, 2015.
  • Playcentre Association Poetry Competition, Highly Commended, 2013.
  • Caselberg Trust International Poetry Prize, Highly Commended, 2011.


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