Quotes from previous Fellows
"The expanse of time, the generous stipend, the gorgeous setting, the space for family and travel alongside work – I loved the fellowship for all these things. In addition, I felt very lucky to receive a fellowship built so firmly on faith and trust. Unburdened by any requirement to state 'aims' or deliver 'outcomes', the New Zealand writers in Menton are free to wander, wonder and end up somewhere other than they'd expected. That freedom strikes me as old, noble, rare and cherishable. Congratulations to the Trust and its hard-working members for creating and sustaining the conditions in which it can flourish."
"I am sure that, like other Fellows I know, I will be looking back on my tenure in Menton as a golden era, not just in my writing life, but in my life as a whole, for many years to come."
"I established a work routine of catching the 8.45 bus round to Garavan and working in the K.M. Room until 1 p.m. This has worked very well for me. I love the room, its simplicity, sense of calm and quiet – which strangely the train stopping outside the door only seems to accentuate. I will really miss that room I think – because it has been such a productive and enjoyable work space. And the hours there were totally my own."
“Now that I’m back in New Zealand I see with every passing moment how valuable the time spent as the Fellow has been to me”
“A writer benefits in two obvious ways from the KM Fellowship. You have an extended period, free from financial worries, in which to get on with your work. Living in Menton provides the stimulus of a different culture, ready access to other parts of France and Italy, and by being there the writer can gain a clearer image, through contrast, of where they have come from”
“I do feel extraordinarily fortunate to have had this opportunity, and know it is something that will continue to influence my work and life for many years to come”
“The title of a Katherine Mansfield story encapsulates my feelings about Menton: Bliss. I am so grateful to have had this magical opportunity; it is no exaggeration to say that it has changed my life”
“We have been back in New Zealand for just over two months and I still long for that room in the Isola Bella. I have never experienced such peace and bliss and uninterrupted time”
“I was completely happy in France, filled up with sights, sounds, sensations, tastes, knowledge – much of which will appear in my work in due time”
“I enjoyed the experience of living in a different culture, surrounded by another language and living to a different routine. I began to think new thoughts and write about new things”
“I doubled my daily output in Menton and, as far as I am able to tell, the quality is good”
“On a personal level I should admit that I have fallen in love with the south of France, especially a small beach at Cap D’Ail where the water is the deepest azure I have ever seen, except where it breaks against the rock where it is lapis lazuli. There could have been no better place to write Bulibasha than here, in Menton”
“The KM room was a pleasure to work in. It’s comfortable and spacious and I did much work there”
“It is hard to know how to start ‘reporting’ on six months of one of the most splendid years of my life – to date. I dreamed of being awarded this Fellowship for thirty years before I actually applied for it. It turned out beyond my wildest expectations. Although I had read reports by previous fellows, I think it is difficult to convey the experience of Menton without living it. I feel I have had a rare and very privileged experience”
Dame Fiona Kidman