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A calling to write2 min read

Jul 1, 2020 2 min

A calling to write2 min read

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Claire Bunt’s love for people has taken her to many wonderful places around the Pacific, and to African countries including Nigeria and Ghana. However, her love of the sea eventually drew her back to live in a house overlooking the Manukau Harbour, where she continues to draw inspiration as a writer in her retirement years.

Reading has been a large part of Claire’s life, and her Onehunga home has bookshelves in almost every corner. Spaces on the walls and shelves display artifacts and framed artwork, each one just as special as the next, containing memories of people and places from her life.

She has had a chequered career, working both here and overseas. She has worked as a bank clerk in Onehunga, a radiographer, real estate agent, and as a primary school teacher for 20 years. In her last years before retirement, she was a legacy advisor for UNICEF NZ – a position she found very fulfilling.

After retiring, Claire answered her calling to write, and took a course to develop her talent for writing stories. This was the beginning of her journey as an author, and to date, she has published three children’s books and is currently working on a story set in WWII.

Her first book, The Green Hat That Blew Away – Life In The Solomon Islands, was based on a true event that took place with local children during a visit to the Solomon Islands. She says, “The local children had never read any storybooks about people from the Solomon Islands, there just wasn’t anything out there. I wanted them to be able to see themselves on the pages of a book, with authentic images to bring them to life. My friend and illustrator Phillip Webb did an amazing job of capturing it all so beautifully.”

Scenes of extreme poverty from her travels, and the thought of children without reading opportunities, had a  lasting effect on her, so she teamed up with UNICEF and other organisations to send copies to impoverished places overseas. As a memento, Claire keeps a scrapbook with a collection of photos and letters from book fans and friends from all over the world.

Visit to purchase one of her amazing books, or email


Win a signed copy of the book

A free, copy of Whatever Happened to Milo, and Walter’s Story could be yours. Email, and put Milo and Walter in the subject line.

Entries close on Friday 17th July, and the draw will take place on Monday 20th July.