Anna Cahill is a New Zealand writer, now based in Brisbane, Australia. Born in Auckland, she grew up in Port Chalmers before moving across the Tasman with her own young family. For Anna, life as a wordsmith was sealed at the age of eleven, when she first heard the word `reporter'. Anna left school with a journalism cadetship on the Otago Daily Times in Dunedin before taking her fascination for words on to radio broadcasting, photo journalism, corporate communication, public relations, editing and writing tuition. She has worked for newspapers big and small, has driven the expanses of North Queensland with a camera and notebook in search of compelling human-interest stories, and has written for city and country councils. A distinguished corporate career led to executive State Government roles in Queensland, directing media, communication and publication teams in primary industries and natural-resource sectors, and in the Department of Premier and Cabinet. For a change, she took up community engagement contracts with private infrastructure development and not-for-profit health projects. Anna co-authored Fruit Fly Fighters, a history and crisis-management reference on the successful Queensland eradication of one of the world's most invasive exotic pests, that was published by CSIRO in 2002. She is even prouder of a volunteer assignment helping a wheelchair-bound woman find her voice to write and publish Wonky, a personal view of disability, in 2015. Colours of a Life was a challenge of a different sort, working across three countries to chronicle the extraordinary career of a remarkable uncle, made possible with unlimited access to his personal papers, thoughts and considerable recall.
"Anna Cahill's biography is a paean to free-spiritedness, and to a colourful, passionate life, lived well beyond accepted boundaries. With many works in public collections nationwide, Douglas MacDiarmid is increasingly being recognised as a unique and indispensable figure in the artistic life of Aotearoa." - GREGORY O'BRIEN, NEW ZEALAND CURATOR, POET, NOVELIST, PAINTER, CRITIC ; "This man, a stranger everywhere, knows how to observe. He speaks with lucidity and indispensable distance of what we can't see and hear anymore . . ." - DR NELLY FINET, FRENCH ART HISTORIAN, PARIS