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Pan Macmillan is seeking manuscript submissions!

Have you always dreamed of being a published author? Here’s your chance! Pan Macmillan is accepting manuscript submissions from 4 – 8 June 2018!

Click here for the submission guidelines.

Local truly is lekker! Five South African titles honoured at the 2018 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards

By Shanthini Naidoo and Mila de Villiers

Six local is lekker authors were recently honoured for their literary contributions to South Africa’s culinary scene at the illustrious 2018 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards held in Yantai, China.

Three of NB Publisher’s cookery titles, all published under the Human & Rousseau imprint in 2017, won in their respective categories, with one NB title coming in third place.

Callie Martiz and Mary-Louis Guy’s homage to a classic South African dessert, melktert, titled The South African Milk Tart Collection, came third in the Pastry and Desserts categroy. (Aitsa!)

Alix Verrips’ Brunch across 11 countries – a selection of recipes she’s compiled as personal chef for employees’ in the Bahamas, St Tropez, Spain, the UK, the USA and Africa – won the award for Best Breakfast Book (bon appétit!), with Susie Chatz-Anderson’s A Bite of Latin America winning in the category Best Latin America outside of Latin America. (Caramba, ms Chatz-Anderson!)

Jan-Braai’s annie-brand Shishanyama was awarded first place in the Barbeque category.

Chef Nompumelelo Mqwebu took home the prestigious Best in the World For Self-Publishing award for Through the Eyes of an African Chef.

“I am very excited that I have managed to win the best in the world in the category self-published at the Gourmand World Awards. I think it is a huge stepping stone for African cuisine and for chefs in South Africa as well.”

Mqwebu, from Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal, is a champion of seasonal, local African produce like baobab and imifino (spinach).

“It’s only today that I’m getting a chance to soak in,” she said.

“It brings great pride for me, young chefs, or the women farmers who are teaching me about the different seasons and indigenous crops and practices such as skills on how to cook some of our dishes which I then take to fine dining. I’m super excited and it will bring lots of opportunity, and that as I grow I take others with me as well.”

Jenny Handley’s gorgeous Gourmet Guide 2018, self-published by Jenny Handley Performance Management, tied for third place in the category Best Authors and Chefs.

Congrats, all!

The Gourmand World Cookbook Awards were founded in 1995 by Edouard Cointreau. Books from 205 countries participated.

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Jacana Media to republish Nthikeng Mohlele's Rusty Bell and Small Things

Nthikeng Mohlele is one of the most accomplished authors South African literature has to offer.

His work has received much praise from literacy critics, culminating in his last novel Pleasure winning the 2016 University of Johannesburg Main Prize for South African Writing in English as well as the 2017 K. Sello Duiker Memorial Prize at the South African Literary Awards.

Rusty Bell and Small Things introduce readers to his earlier work and give those already familiar with his work a chance to complete their Mohlele collection.

Rusty Bell

‘An intimate and effortless philosophical work that establishes Nthikeng Mohlele as, undoubtedly, one of our generation’s finest novelists.’ – Eusebius McKaiser

‘I wrestled with life and lost.’ So begins the story of Michael, a corporate lawyer known to his colleagues and associates as Sir Marvin, who picks his way – sometimes delicately but more often in his own blundering fashion – through the unfathomable intricacies that make up a life: love and anger, humility and ambition, trust and distrust, selfishness and selflessness.

Small Things

‘Behind this story of love, music and the eternal quest lies an artistic sensibility as generous as it is complex. The prose is rich in texture, the final effect melancholy and comic in equal proportions.’ – JM Coetzee

In this haunting tale of love and learning, the existential chaos of a life ravaged by circumstance takes on a rhythm of its own, one bound by loss and loneliness but also an intelligent awareness of self. Sometimes melancholy, sometimes brutal, occasionally funny and infuriating, a journalist-comrade-lover caught up in the shade and shadow of politics and social injustice faces treachery and betrayal on every level.

Nthikeng Mohlele was partly raised in Limpopo and Tembisa Township and attended the University of the Witwatersrand, where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in dramatic art, publishing studies and African literature. He is the author of four critically acclaimed novels: The Scent of Bliss (2008), Small Things (2013), Rusty Bell (2014), Pleasure (2016) and Michael K (2018).

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Sue Nyathi's heart-breaking novel about six Zimbabwean immigrants' treacherous expedition to Johannesburg is told with both brave honesty and bold description

We all know our final destination but we have no idea what will cross our path as we journey there.


 
It’s 2008 and the height of Zimbabwe’s economic demise. A group of passengers is huddled in a Toyota Quantum about to embark on a treacherous expedition to the City of Gold.

Amongst them is Gugulethu, who is hoping to be reconciled with her mother; Dumisani, an ambitious young man who believes he will strike it rich, Chamunorwa and Chenai, twins running from their troubled past; and Portia and Nkosi, a mother and son desperate to be reunited with a husband and father they see once a year.

They have paid a high price for the dangerous passage to what they believe is a better life; an escape from the vicious vagaries of their present life in Bulawayo.

In their minds, the streets of Johannesburg are paved with gold but they will have to dig deep to get close to any gold, dirtying themselves in the process.

Told with brave honesty and bold description, the stories of the individual immigrants are simultaneously heart-breaking and heart-warming.
 
 
SUE NYATHI was born and raised in Bulawayo and resides in Johannesburg. An investment analyst by day and a storyteller to her son at night, she writes to escape the reality of financial markets and economic shop talk. She made her screenwriting debut on the award-winning e.tv series Matatiele. Her first novel, The Polygamist, was published in 2012 and readers can look forward to its film adaptation in 2019.

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Hermanus FynArts 2018 (8 – 17 June): authors who journey to unravel issues

Festival goers can expect ten exhilarating days celebrating the arts at Hermanus FynArts, the annual arts festival and winter school that will take place from 8 – 17 June 2018. A unique and quality event on the South African Arts Calendar, this classic-feel festival showcases top South African artists, speakers, chefs, wine makers of note, and more. With something for everyone, the programme is filled with exhibitions, music, talks, demonstrations, workshops, tastings, films and events for children.

Knowing where you come from, understanding and experiencing diverse cultures and communities are topics for discussion at the sixth annual Hermanus FynArts festival, from 8 to 17 June. During the Strauss & Co lecture and presentation series, five authors will be interviewed about their books from which they will also read in a separate session.

In his newly-published book, The Café de Move-On Blues, the long-awaited sequel to White Boy Running, Christopher Hope travels to find out just who South Africans think they are and where they think they’re going. He recounts his great trek around South Africa to visit toppled and assaulted statues and monuments, ranging from Cecil Rhodes to Saartjie Baartman. Fellow-writer and journalist Bryan Rostron will talk to him about this, his latest book. In a separate session Christopher will read selected tales from an earlier work, The Love Songs of Nathan J. Swirsky, described by reviewers as a ‘little jewel-box’ of a book. These stories were originally commissioned and recorded by the BBC and read by the author.

Sindiwe Magona, writer, storyteller, actress and motivational speaker, will talk about her books and her remarkable life, with Nancy Richards, well known as a former presenter on SAfm Literature. Sindiwe’s jouney from domestic worker in the suburbs of Cape Town to the United Nations in New York where she worked for 20 years, and her substantial oeuvre of writings for both children and adults form the basis of the discussion. In a separate session, Storytime with Sindiwe Magona, children will be in for a special treat when they are invited to doss down on blankets on the stage of the Auditorium while Sindiwe reads them stories.

Small towns and the Afrikaans culture are common threads in the work of Sally Andrew and Jennifer Friedman. Sally, author of the Tannie Maria mystery series set in the Klein Karoo, and Jennifer, whose book Queen of the Free State, is about growing up Jewish in a small town in the 1950s and ’60s, will talk to Petrovna Metelerkamp, a publisher and an authority on the life of Ingrid Jonker. Sally and Jennifer will also join forces for a book reading.

The Keeper of the Kumm – Ancestral Longing and Belonging of a Boesmankind is the spiritual journey of Sylvia Vollenhoven in search of her roots, telling the story of a battle-hardened, 21st century journalist who has to journey with her 19th century ancestor to delve into the hardest story of them all: Who am I really? In the process of writing she is cured of a debilitating illness that had left her bedridden. Sylvia will be interviewed by media personality Shado Twala. In a separate session she will read extracts from her book.

Award-winning poet Alfred Schaffer, who is partly Dutch, partly Aruban and a lecturer in Afrikaans-Nederlands at Stellenbosch University, will read from his poetry in Dutch, with English and Afrikaans translations. He will also read poems by other Dutch and Belgian poets, with English translations.

The full FynArts programme, also in e-booklet format, is at hermanusfynarts.co.za. Bookings can be made at Webtickets, also at selected Pick n Pay stores and on 060 957 5371.

The Café de Move-on Blues

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White Boy Running

 
 
 

The Love Songs of Nathan J. Swirsky

 
 
 

Recipes for Love and Murder: A Tannie Maria Mystery

 
 
 
Queen of the Free State

 
 
 

Keeper of the Kumm

The shortlist for the Short Story Day Africa Prize for Short Fiction has been announced!

Via Short Story Day Africa

When planning the 2017 Short Story Day Africa Prize, ID, the abbreviation for “identity” and the psychoanalytic construct of the “Id” – that deep structure that houses our unconscious desires – we called for “innovative short fiction that explores identity, especially (but not limited to) the themes of gender identity and sexuality.”

We were impressed as never before by the multiple ways in which writers from all over the continent responded, the depth, variety and innovation of their interpretations. From Benin to Ethiopia, from Morocco to South Africa, the stories on the long list reveal uncomfortable and fascinating truths about who we are.

Once editing was completed, the twenty-one stories were sent to the judges. The decision to edit the stories and to engage with the authors before judging has proven to be invaluable in enabling young writers and raw talent to compete on an equal footing with their more established and experienced peers. The final stories and indeed the shortlisted stories are more evenly balanced between those already making their mark in terms of publication and awards, and extremely talented writers who are new to the adventure of publishing or only just venturing into the terrain of short fiction.

This year, for the first time, we opted for a broad spread of volunteer judges, ably assisted by The Johannesburg Review of Books, rendering the evaluation process flatter, more consultative and democratic. The combination of the new scoring system and the extremely high standard of the stories meant that for the first time, we’ve produced a short list of nine stories, instead of the usual six.

The shortlist is as follows (in alphabetical order):

1. The Piano Player by Agazit Abate (Ethiopia)
2. Ibinabo by Michael Agugom (Nigeria)
3. The Geography of Sunflowers by Michelle Angwenyi (Kenya)
4. Limbo by Innocent Chizaram Ilo (Nigeria)
5. Sew My Mouth by Cherrie Kandie (Kenya)
6. South of Samora by Farai Mudzingwa (Zimbabwe)
7. All Our Lives by Tochukwu Emmanuel Okafor (Nigeria)
8. The House on the Corner by Lester Walbrugh (South Africa)
9. God Skin by Michael Yee (South Africa)

Seen here are a variety of explorations of queer sexuality – an extremely important and necessary creative intervention, given the grim march of homophobia, including in legislative forms, across the African continent. Michael Agugom charts the challenges of negotiating biracial and sexually complex identities in a small and watchful Nigerian island community in “Ibinabo”; and Cherrie Kandie provides a powerful and painful account of the silencing (literally) of lesbian love in urban Nairobi in “Sew My Mouth”. In “The House on the Corner”, Lester Walbrugh provides a moving interpretation of the perhaps ubiquitous “gay life in Cape Town” narrative; Innocent Chizaram Ilo provides a delightfully unusual and fantastical account of heartbreak as experienced by a lesbian scarecrow in “Limbo”.

Michelle Angwenyi’s lyrical and hallucinatory “The Geography of Sunflowers” presents heteronormative love and loss as experiences that both heighten and blur identity.

Identity is also formed through friendships and family bonds, and in Farai Mudzingwa’s delicate and moving “South of Samora”, a young man whose social standing is dependent on where he lives, forms a friendship with an ailing child that forces him to define himself; while Tochukwu Emmanuel Okafor’s “All Our Lives” is a wry, clear-eyed, humorous and characteristically compassionate account of the identity (multiple identities, in fact) of a much-maligned community – young and disaffected men who drift into Nigerian cities in pursuit of a “better life”.

“The Piano Player” by Agazit Abate is a brilliant inversion of the “African abroad” narrative as it presents snapshots of life in Addis Abada through the eyes and ears of a pianist in a luxury hotel bar, and “God Skin” by Michael Yee weaves together alienation, forbidden love and intimate violence against a subtle backdrop of the scars of Liberia’s civil war.

Congratulations to all the shortlisted authors.

The winners will be announced on 21 June 2018, the shortest day of the year in the southern hemisphere. The grand prize winner is set to win $800. A full list of project sponsors is available on our sponsors page.

The resulting anthology from the longlisted prize entries, ID: New Short Fiction From Africa, is edited by Nebila Abdulmelik, Otieno Owino and Helen Moffett as part of the SSDA/Worldreader Editing Mentorship. ID is due for release on 21 June 2018, the shortest day of the year in the southern hemisphere, in partnership with New Internationalist.

All of SSDA’s previous anthologies have received critical acclaim, with two stories from Feast, Famine & Potluck shortlisted for The Caine Prize for African Writing – with one, “My Father’s Head” by Okwiri Oduor, going on to win the prize. Terra Incognita and Water likewise received wide critical praise, including reviews from the Los Angeles Review of Books, the Sunday Times and the Financial Mail. Stacy Hardy’s story “Involution”, published in Migrations is shortlisted for the 2018 Caine Prize for African Writing.