1 NOVEMBER 2016
“I’ve frequently wondered why I write, why anybody writes. I can’t remember having this conservation with any of my friends who are almost all writers; it just seems a given. I wanted to be a writer ever since I could hold a pencil although at the time I didn’t really know what a ‘writer’ was. I don’t believe poets are ‘the legislators of the world’ or have any special communication with the cosmos or even particular wisdom or insight. But there seems to be a kind of super sensitivity and acute power of observation that results in the need to express what is felt or seen. Almost as if nothing’s real if it isn’t written down.”
Nicolette Stasko in ‘Apologia’ with Rave Southerly
Nicolette Stasko was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, in 1950 and first started writing poetry and stories during her school years. She arrived in Australia in 1979. Stasko has published four collections of poetry and three chapbooks. She has also published a work of fiction, The Invention of Everyday Life (2007) and a bestselling book about oysters (2000). Her work is widely anthologised and she is well known as an essayist and critic. Her first collection Abundance (1992) won the Anne Elder Award. Her work has been short-listed for the Dame Mary Gilmore Award, National Book Awards and NSW Premier’s Prize. In 2013 she was a member of the judges’ jury for the International Montreal Poetry Competition. Currently she is completing her fifth collection of poetry and a book on Orientalist art. In 2017 she will resume her position as an Honorary Associate in the English Department of The University of Sydney. Nicolette Stasko lives in Sydney.