2Write for writing and editing


LATEST NEWS: Song for Rosaleen out now

book cover for Song for RosaleenPip’s latest memoir, Song for Rosaleen, is both a celebration of her mother Rosaleen’s life and an intimate account of the practical and ethical dilemmas that faced Rosaleen’s six children after she got dementia. Published by Massey University Press in April 2018, the book raises important questions about who we become when our memories fail, how our rapidly ageing population can best be cared for, and what this means for us all.

‘An outstanding example of memoir —creative non-fiction at its best.’
– Journalist and o
ral historian Alison Parr

I have no doubt this book will resonate with a huge portion of readers — especially anyone who has watched a loved one decline due to a degenerative illness.’
Author Mandy Hager

Song for Rosaleen is available from all good bookshops and online. RRP $29.99. You can also order copies from the author. Email: pip.desmond@2write.co.nz

The War That Never Ended

The War That Never EndedIn The War That Never Ended: New Zealand Veterans Remember Korea, Pip recorded the memories of 12 Kiwi veterans of the Korean War. It was commissioned by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage and published by Penguin in 2013.

The book is based on oral history interviews with gunners, signallers, seamen, a mechanic, dispatch rider, dentist, engineer and official photographer – straight-talking Māori and Pakeha men sharing significant and irreverent war-time stories. The men’s personal narratives breathe life into this important historical event and will give future generations a greater understanding of a largely forgotten war.

The War That Never Ended was launched at Parliament in March 2013. Listen to Pip’s interview with Eva Radich on National Radio.

‘Thank you for your efforts on behalf of all our veterans and your 
kind words at the launch of your most excellent book.’
- Des Vinten, Korean War veteran 

Creative writing guide

Creative writing manual coverAs a volunteer in Timor-Leste from 2013 to 2015, Pip wrote Matadalan Hakerek Kreativu, the first creative writing guide in the national language, Tetun. The 140-page guide is a practical introduction to story-writing for this traditionally oral culture. It arose out of Pip’s creative writing classes for Timorese researchers who have gathered 800 women’s stories of resistance to the brutal Indonesian occupation of their country. Four of these stories are included in the guide, which Pat designed and formatted.

Trust: A True Story of Women and Gangs

Winner of the 2010 NZ Post Best First Book of Non-Fiction, Trust: A True Story of Women and Gangs, is the true story of Aroha Trust, a work cooperative for young gang women in Wellington in the late 1970s. It’s based on Pip’s experience as a founding member of the Trust and her oral history interviews and ongoing friendship with the women.

University texts

We edit Employment Agreements: Bargaining Trends and Employment Law Update, an annual 300-page publication for Victoria University’s Centre for Labour, Employment and Law.

We also copy edit, proof-read and format university texts, such as these for Pearson Publishers (Higher Education Division):

Other book projects

Pat is writing the detailed personal and business history of a Wellington family, based on oral history interviews with family members.

Pip recently edited a thriller set in South Africa, penned by an Irish writer.