Whiti Hereaka is an award-winning novelist and playwright of Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Te Arawa, Ngāti Whakaue, Tuhourangi, Ngāti Tumatawera, Tainui and Pākehā descent, based in Wellington. She holds a Masters in Creative Writing (Scriptwriting) from the International Institute of Modern Letters.
In 2012, Whiti was the recipient of the Bruce Mason Playwriting Award. Her play Rewena, has been performed nationally. During 2018 and 2019, Whiti worked as a scriptwriter on the second season of Pukeko Pictures' animated TV series: Kiddets.
She is the author of four novels: The Graphologist's Apprentice, and the award-winning YA novels Bugs, Legacy and Kurangaituku. Legacy won the New Zealand Children's and Young Adult Book Award for YA fiction in 2019 and Kurangaituku was awarded the 2022 Jann Medlicott Acorn Award for fiction in the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.
She is also co-editor, with Witi Ihimaera, of an anthology of Māori myths -- Pūrākau -- published in 2019. In 2021, Whiti was awarded the NZSA Peter and Dianne Beatson Fellowship. Hereaka teaches Writing for the Young at the International Institute of Modern Letters, Victoria University and creative writing at Massey University.
Whiti has been involved with Te Papa Tupu, an incubator programme for Māori writers, as a writer, a mentor and a judge. She also sits on the boards of the Māori Literature Trust, the Michael King Writers Centre and Playmarket NZ.
Whiti has held residencies in Aotearoa and at the International Writing Program in Iowa (2013), Sun Yat-sen University (2018), and South Australia Writers residency (2019) and represented New Zealand at the Taipei Book Fair 2015.