Melanie Mayell is the author of two self-published books, Thank You: Living in Gratitude
(2014), and Goodbye: For Times of Sadness and Loss
(2012). Both feature photographs she took during her travels around the world, paired with quotes, poems and sayings. Thank You emerged from her ‘red album’ and Goodbye from her 'white album'. In Goodbye
, Melanie invites us to feel our own sorrows more deeply. It's a beautiful keepsake for anyone, but a particular touchstone for someone who is feeling sad and in need of heartfelt comfort.
In early 2016, Melanie took part in the inaugural Deathwalker Training programme with Zenith Virago, and soon after started hosting the Christchurch Death Cafe. In 2019, she hosted the first Death Matters NZ conference, which ran again in 2020. After it was cancelled it last year due to Covid, the third Death Matters conference will take place on Friday 23 September, at Tūranga, the Christchurch central library.
Melanie couldn't decide on just one farewell song. She nominated 'All My Tears' by Ane Brun, 'Way Down We Go' by KALEO, Jeff Buckley's version of 'Hallelejah' and 'Breathless' by Nick Cave as songs she would like played at her funeral or wake. Listen to the songs in our 'Farewell songs' playlist