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Laura Solomon in London
|Born||Laura Jane Solomon
28 June 1974
|Occupation||Short-story writer, novelist, poet, playwright|
|Genre||Short story, novel, poetry, play|
|Notable works||Alternative Medicine
"An Imitation of Life"
|Notable awards||Bridport Prize
Laura Solomon (born 1974) is a New Zealand novelist, playwright and poet. Best known as a novelist, her poetry and short stories have also been widely published and short listed for awards and prizes.
Laura was born in Auckland on 28 June 1974. She grew up in various parts of New Zealand , including Raetihi, Nelson and 'Oxford Companion to New Zealand Literature (Auckland: Oxford University Press, 1998), p. 503</ref>
After graduating from Victoria, Solomon left New Zealand and lived abroad in London, where she wrote An Imitation of Life and Alternative Medicine. Solomon completed an MSc in Computer Science at Birkbeck College at the University of London in 2003.
She has travelled internationally for her work in IT, including working in Norway for FAST Search and Transfer, now owned by Microsoft.
She returned to New Zealand to live in Nelson in 2007 and currently resides there where she writes full-time.
Solomon wrote poetry and fiction from her teens. As a young woman in Wellington, she wrote for theatre. Her play The Dummy Bride was produced at the Wellington Fringe Festival in 1996.
At the age of 21, Solomon's first two novels — Black Light (1996) and Nothing Lasting (1997) — were accepted by Auckland publisher Tandem Press.
She emerged as part of a new wave of young New Zealand writers in the 1990s anthologised in Mark Pirie’s The NeXt Wave (1998). She continued writing while living overseas in the UK and had a play Sprout produced at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2005. She took a break from publishing her work but returned to writing and book publishing in Nelson from 2007.
Her recent fiction has been published overseas in Hong Kong and Britain (Alternative Medicine [short stories] and An Imitation of Life [novel]) and her poetry has been widely published in New Zealand and internationally in magazines and online sites. She has won prizes in Bridport, Edwin Morgan, Ware Poets, Willesden Herald, Mere Literary Festival, and Essex Poetry Festival competitions.
In 2009, her novella, Instant Messages, jointly won the inaugural Proverse Prize for Fiction in Hong Kong and was short-listed for the Virginia Prize in the UK. In 2011, her debut collection of poetry In Vitro appeared from HeadworX in Wellington, New Zealand.
She has since published further fiction (Hilary and David, University Days (a sequel to Instant Messages), Vera Magpie, and a short story collection, The Shingle Bar Sea Monster and Other Stories)
The second edition of In Vitro and a second collection of Solomon’s poetry, Freda Kahlo’s Cry and Other Poems have also been published by Proverse.
Solomon has judged the Sentinel Quarterly Short Story Competition in the UK.
Publications by Laura Solomon
- Black Light (North Shore City, N.Z.: Tandem Press, 1996)
- Nothing Lasting (North Shore City, N.Z.: Tandem Press, 1997)
- Alternative Medicine (UK: Flame Books, 2008)
- An Imitation of Life (UK: Solidus, 2010)
- Instant Messages (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2011)
- Hilary and David (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2011)
- The Shingle Bar Sea Monster and Other Stories (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2012)
- An Imitation of Life, 2nd ed. (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2013)
- Vera Magpie (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2013)
- University Days (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2014)
- Taking Wainui (India: Woven Words Publishers, 2017)
- In Vitro (Wellington: HeadworX Publishers, 2011)
- In Vitro (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2012, 2nd edition)
- Freda Kahlo’s Cry and Other Poems (Hong Kong: Proverse Publishing, 2012)
- Laura Solomon’s website biography