Rowan Metcalfe was born in Taupiri and was a writer from an early age. Rowan was first published in 1974 in the New Zealand literary quarter Landfall. Her short stories and poems were published in various other literary journals and anthologies, and she shares with Owen Marshall the distinction of having twice won the BNZ Katherine Mansfield Short Story Award.
In 1996 after living in Europe for 20 years, Rowan returned to New Zealand to work as a journalist and continue research for Transit of Venus. Her most recent published work of fiction North Sea appeared in the 2002 collection Essential New Zealand Short Stories edited by Owen Marshall.
Rowan passed away in 2003.