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Creatively Christchurch

Lotta Dann – Writer

Authors, Literature

How would you describe what you do?

I am a writer. I write mostly on the topic of addiction and recovery.

What was your most recent project?

My third book, ‘The wine o’clock Myth: The truth you need to know about women and alcohol’, was released in 2020. I now mostly creating content for the Living Sober website (www.livingsober.org.nz) which is a large online community for people who are trying to quit drinking.

What project have you worked on that you’re the most proud of?

Putting out my first memoir ‘Mrs D Is Going Without’ and going public about my drinking problem was a huge and scary deal. But I did it to reach others who might be struggling and the response was incredibly positive

What is essential for creatives to have in their life?

Bravery. And an ability to tune out their inner critic telling them their work isn’t worthwhile. Everyone struggles with a measure of imposter syndrome, it’s normal – push past it!

What inspires you about Ōtautahi?

I grew up in Christchurch and return home several times every year to visit with family and friends. My links to the community and land there informs everything that I do.

What piece of advice about your creative work has served you well?

When it comes to writing – just put your bum in the seat and write! Don’t worry if it’s not perfect straight away, everyone writes a shitty first draft. The only problem for writers is to not write. So put your bum in the seat and write.

What’s the biggest misconception about your creative work?

That it’s always easy. It’s not.

What Christchurch artists do you most admire?

I love Bill Sutton landscapes – particularly those of the Port Hills where we holidayed while I was growing up and still do today.

What artwork/piece of music/performance has taken your breath away?

I remember crying listening to Billy Bragg sing ‘The Saturday Boy’ at the Christchurch Town Hall in the late 80s.

What do you wish you’d have known about creative work when you were younger?

That it’s not just about having the talent, it’s about doing the work and being willing to put yourself out there.

What’s the best kept secret in Otautahi?

Okains Bay. The campground, the beach, the lagoon, the lack of cellphone coverage. It’s a magical place.


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