Mandy Hager received the Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellowship in 2014. A trained teacher, with an Advanced Diploma in Fine Arts (Whitireia) and an MA in Creative Writing from Victoria University, Hager’s background has given her a unique insight into understanding her readers, often approaching difficult subject matters with a compassionate eye.
She has received multiple awards for her writing while also being awarded the 2012 Beatson Fellowship, the 2014 Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellowship and the 2015 Waikato University Writer in Residence.
In 2015 her novel ‘Singing Home the Whale’ was awarded the Margaret Mahy Book of the Year award, and the Best Young Adult fiction Award from the NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. It has also been named a 2016 IBBY Honour Book, an international award.
In May 2017 her historical novel for adults, Heloise, was published by Penguin NZ. It tells the life story of Heloise d’Argenteuil, famed lover of 12th century French philosopher Peter Abelard. It was longlisted for the 2018 Ockham Book Awards.
In 2019 she was awarded the Storylines Margaret Mahy Medal for her life-time achievements and contributions to Aotearoa’s literature for young adults. Her writing runs across a catalogue of adult novels, non-fiction, blogs and short stories.
In 2014 she was awarded the Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellowship where she spent 6 months in the South of France researching her new project. In 2015 she was awarded Writer in Residence at Waikato University, Hamilton, where she worked on the first draft of her historical novel for adults, Heloise (Penguin NZ, 2017.) When published, this book was on the bestseller list for several weeks and long-listed for the 2018 Ockham Book Awards.