Sue McCauley

Sue McCauley QSM, is a novelist, short story writer, playwright, journalist, and screenwriter. Her first novel, Other Halves (1982), won the Wattie Book of the Year Award and the New Zealand Book Award for Fiction. It was reprinted numerous times, in New Zealand and overseas, and was made into a film. In subsequent years Sue wrote five more novels, two short story collections and a biography. She has also written drama for stage and TV and adapted her own novel for the film Other Halves. Sue’s first book was loosely based on the early — and unconventional — relationship between Sue and her husband, Pat, who sadly passed away last year. They were together for 51 years. 

2024 festival sessions


Sue McCauley in conversation with Tessa Nicholson

12pm-1pm, Sat 27 July, ASB Theatre Marlborough, $25

Sue discusses her latest novel, Landed, and reflects on her writing life in conversation with Tessa Nicholson. Landed is a wry, pensive, character-driven novel that is a close examination of what matters most in life. It’s about reconciling familial obligation with a sense of purpose and relevance, it’s about the inevitability of growing old, the importance of connection, and the need to find ‘home’.

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Turning Points

Emily Perkins and Sue McCauley in conversation with Jane Forrest Waghorn

9.30am-10.30am, Sun 28 July, ASB Theatre Marlborough, $25

What would Therese Thorne and Briar Howland talk about if they shared a table in a Wellington cafe? The protagonists of Emily Perkins’ latest novel Lioness, and Sue McCauley’s latest novel Landed are separated by age, wealth and other circumstances, but both are fed up with being shoehorned into roles. They are making decisions about how to go forward in their lives and relationships. Sue and Emily discuss writing about the choices and consequences of middle age and beyond.

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