Naomi Arnold is an award-winning journalist who freelances from Nelson, New Zealand. 

She has been writing professionally for 10 years, producing features, news, reviews, travel stories, essays, and columns. Five of those years were at the Nelson Mail as a news reporter, feature writer, blogger, social media editor, and columnist.

She writes about everything, but particularly loves stories about people, science, the environment, travel, and outdoor adventure. She spent three months reporting on science from Antarctica, a month covering the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, and in 2013 travelled the United States for six weeks, investigating the digital delivery of longform feature writing as part of the University of Canterbury's Robert Bell Scholarship. From that came Featured, a growing collection of New Zealand's best non-fiction. (Hear more about Featured in this October 2015 interview with Radio New Zealand.)

In mid-2016 she and The Spinoff created media podcast The Get, which interviews writers and journalists about their work. She also reviews books for Radio New Zealand and is coordinator of the Page & Blackmore Readers & Writers programme, part of the Nelson Arts Festival. 

Connect with her on LinkedInTwitter, or Instagram.


Published in

Newspapers, radio, digital



Radio New Zealand

The Dominion Post

The Nelson Mail

The New Zealand Herald

The Press

The Spinoff

The Sunday Star-Times

The Wireless



Magazines and journals


Heritage New Zealand


North & South

New Zealand Geographic

Overland (Australia)

Pacific Standard (US)

Pro Photographer


Sky Sport


The Listener

The Magazine (US)


Your Weekend


Don't Dream It's Over: Reimagining Journalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, Freerange Press, September 2016 (essay)

The Story of the Nelson Hospice (author - in production)

Tell You What: Great New Zealand Non-fiction 2016, Auckland University Press, Nov 2015 (feature story)

World of WearableArt: 30 Designers Tell Their Stories, Potton & Burton, Sept 2015 (author)

Tell You What: Great New Zealand Non-fiction 2015, Auckland University Press, Nov 2014 (essay)




2016 Canon Media Awards Lifestyle Feature Writer of the Year

2015 Canon Media Awards Regional/Community Newspaper Feature Writer of the Year

2014 Canon Media Awards Regional/Community Newspaper Feature Writer of the Year (Finalist)

2013 Mayborn Literary Nonfiction Essay Prize and finalist, Reported Narrative

2013 University of Canterbury Robert Bell Travelling Scholarship in Journalism

2008 University of Canterbury D.W. Bain Prize; Robert Bell Scholarship; International Polar Year Antarctic Media Scholarship.

2003 University of Otago James Clark Prize; Helen Brosnan Memorial Prize; Lawrence Jones Prize for New Zealand and Post-Colonial Literature.