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Apply for the position of project coordinator for the South African Book Development Council


The South African Book Development Council (SABDC) is the sector representative body for the South African book industry. It aims to increase access to books through a diverse range of strategies.

The work of the SABDC firmly declares the values and principles required for change and transformation in the South African book industry. Its success has far-reaching positive consequences for the country.

As such, the SABDC is a leading-edge organisation that is working in new and pioneering ways to overcome the most challenging barriers faced by the South African book publishing sector. We therefore require skilled, innovative and leading-edge staff to facilitate and deliver our ambitious vision.

The opportunity below seeks a skilled individual with the necessary drive and passion to fulfil the demands made by this ambitious vision.



Please send detailed CV to


Project Coordinator



Tel: 021 914-8626/7
Fax: 021 914-8615


Assist in the implementation of projects of the South African Book Development Council


1. Assist in the conceptualization of book development projects
2. Draft and submit project implementation plans
3. Implement projects
4. Attend project meetings and take minutes
5. Report on project implementation based on project plans
6. Basic research to inform project plans


• Excellent written and verbal communication skills
• Excellent organization and planning skills
• High integrity
• Ability to follow instruction
• Team player
• Ability to work with diverse players
• Excellent work ethic
• Self-driven
• Attentive to detail
• Very good time management


• An appropriate Bachelors Degree in publishing or similar
• A minimum of 5 years project implementation experience in development or business setting
• Basic understanding of the development sector in South Africa
• Knowledge of the Cultural or Book sector
• Computer proficiency essential ® Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Data management skills

Follow SABDC Project Coordinator 2017 for more.

Post: Literary Programme Manager for SABF 2018

SABF 2018

Join the exciting journey of bringing storytelling, books, the book industry in all its wonderful forms and so much more to South Africa.

About the South African Book Fair (SABF)

In 2017, the South African Book Development Council (SABDC) chartered a new journey for the South African Book Fair (SABF) by firmly declaring the values and principles required for change and transformation in the South African book industry. These were articulated and manifested at the 2017 SABF event. The SABDC remains committed to the ongoing use of the SABF to further develop, with all its stakeholders, a shared understanding of the following:

  •  The meaning of being South African.
  •  The meaning of having an African perspective.
  •  The shape and forms transformation should take.
  •  The reading culture(s) that need to emerge and flourish.

Post: Literary Programme Manager

An excellent opportunity is available for an experienced Literary Programme Manager for SABF 2018. The successful candidate will assist with leading the very ambitious vision of the SABF through a diverse, dynamic, topical and uniquely African literary programme.

The role
Reporting to the CEO of the SABDC, the Literary Programme Manager will work with the SABDC core staff and the SABF team to ensure all elements of the literary programme are implemented on time and within budget.

The key responsibilities of the role will be to:

  •  Develop and deliver a programme that is innovative, transformative, diverse and engaging.
  •  Develop collaborative programming, with engagement from key stakeholders.
  •  Ensure that established authors, and emerging and new talent, are all represented on the programme.
  •  Secure the presence of continental and international authors that embody the vision of a repositioned SABF.
  •  Ensure that the speakers are representative of South Africa and are diverse in their views.
  •  Develop and implement a fun, light and enchanting children’s programme.
  •  Develop key literary activities in the lead-up to SABF 2018.
  •  Work with a programme assistant to manage all the logistics around speakers and their events.
  •  Liaise with service providers to ensure the smooth, effective delivery of the literary programme (e.g. with events company, ticketing company, PR and marketing).
  •  Make input into and support the PR and media plan for the SABF.
  • Write creative content for the Literary Programme.
  •  Set up an effective knowledge-management system that includes efficient record management.
  •  Gather monitoring and evaluation data for statistics and analysis on success indicators for the SABF’s Literary Programme.
  •  Organise and co-ordinate debriefs for the programme.

The successful candidate will:

  • Work within the governance structures of the SABDC, in a neutral, pre-competitive, growth-oriented manner.
  •  Work in a high-pressure environment, be team oriented, with a flexible approach.
  •  Be knowledgeable and sensitive to the prevailing challenges and dynamics within the book industry.

Competencies and skills required

High levels of knowledge, competency and skill are required. The following apply:

  •  Extensive knowledge of South African literature and South Africa’s literary communities.
  •  Strong management, written and communication skills.
  •  Willingness to work as part of a small team.
  •  Ability to initiate as well as collaborate.
  •  Ability to work within a strategic framework.
  •  Excellent time-management skills.
  •  Ability to work independently.
  •  Industry-wide contacts.
  •  Ability to work with diverse stakeholders.
  •  Basic financial record-keeping experience.
  •  Some event-management experience.

Please submit a detailed CV and a brief programme strategy to the SABDC by 24 November 2017. Interviews will be held around 30 November 2017.

Please contact the SABDC at (021) 914-8626 for further information.


Entries for the 2019 Sanlam Prize for Youth Literature are now open!

This is your chance to become a published author!

Since its inception in 1980, the prestigious Sanlam Prize for Youth Literature has consistently rewarded work of outstanding quality, becoming a trusted brand among both the general book-buying public and the educational sector.

Prizes worth R75 000 are up for grabs and prize-winning authors will get their books published by Tafelberg Publishers, catapulting their writing career to the next level.

Get your entry form here: The closing date is 5 October 2018. | Jy kan nou inskryf vir die 2019-Sanlampryse vir Jeuglektuur. Kry jou inskrywingsvorm hier: Die sluitingsdatum is 5 Oktober 2018.

State Security Agency lays charges against The President's Keepers author, Jacques Pauw

The President's Keeper

Book details

Martin Steyn's Dark Traces awarded with a Kirkus Star Review

LAPA Publishers (South Africa) and Catalyst Press (USA) are thrilled to announce that Martin Steyn’s English-fiction debut, Dark Traces, has been awarded a Kirkus Star Review.

The Kirkus Star is one of the most prestigious recognitions in the book industry, and certainly the dream of any author and publisher with dealings in the USA.

Kirkus is known for its blunt, honest reviews since 1933 and the Kirkus Prize is one of the richest literary awards in the world, with a prize of $50,000 bestowed annually to authors of fiction, nonfiction and young readers’ literature. Books that have earned the Kirkus Star are automatically nominated for the Kirkus Prize. Steyn’s book will qualify for the 2018 prize. The prize is awarded by a panel composed of respected writers and highly regarded booksellers, librarians and Kirkus critics throughout the USA.

The reviewer makes special mention of Steyn’s use of Afrikaans words like klagtebakkie and oom, with a glossary explaining these terms to a US audience.

Book details

Durban first African city to become a UNESCO World City of Literature. Lakka, bru.

The coastal city synonymous with beaches, bunny chow and kief barrel waves has won a bid to become a UNESCO City of Literature‚ the 21st in the world and the first in Africa.

International cities which hold this title include Edinburgh, Melbourne, Barcelona, Heidelberg and Krakow.

LitNet’s Naomi Meyer recently conducted an interview with Darryl David, former Head of Afrikaans at UKZN, who headed Durban’s bid for UNESCO City of Literature status. Here’s what they chatted about:

Darryl David


Darryl, breaking news: Durban’s bid to become a UNESCO World City of Literature in 2018 has been successful. What does this mean?

Yes, we did it Naomi. Durban is now the first UNESCO City of Literature on the African continent. This is big. In a sense it means that Durban becomes the literary capital of Africa, the literary gateway to Africa. Everything that the city plans from now, literature must be at its heart. It must define the city. Statues of writers need to be built, literary trails need to be developed. We already have three major literary festivals in the city: Time of the Writer; Poetry Africa and most recently ARTiculate Africa. Our bid was built on these cornerstones. By joining the UNESCO City of Literature family, the literary world will open up to Durban. I said it after I curated ARTiculate Africa at the end of September: if I am given the nod to curate ARTiculate Africa again, I already have one Nobel Laureate, one Pulitzer Prize winner and three Booker Prize winners lined up to come to Durban in 2018.

It is the first time a South African or an African city has become a City of Literature. Why Durban? What were the criteria?

Why Durban? This is a question that I have been asked numerous times. I prefer to answer the question with a question. Why not Durban? As I mentioned above, we have three literary festivals; two of them, Poetry Africa and Time of the Writer, which incidentally was the brainchild of Breyten Breytenbach, enjoy almost iconic status in Africa. And ARTiculate Africa has ambitions to become the flagship international literary festival in South Africa.

And then, too, the city runs one of the most inspiring library programmes in South Africa. No matter what Durban’s faults may be, they run a great library programme. They have the One City, One Book Project, in which a local writer’s book becomes the book of the year. This year The Pavement Bookworm, Philani Dladla’s book, was chosen. And believe me, this city spends millions on their artists. And they commit millions to literary festivals. Time of the Writer and Poetry Africa are not only UKZN-funded; the major sponsor is the City of Durban.

And don’t forget that Durban also hosts the Durban International Film Festival. UNESCO wanted cross-sector collaboration. The Film Festival offered us this.

And of course the Durban ICC has been the top International Convention Centre in Africa for the last 15 years. Not Cape Town. Not Jozi. UNESCO was looking for a city that had an impressive track record for hosting international events. The ICC gave us the pedigree.

And yes, we cannot boast a Fugard or a JM Coetzee in Durban. But this is Alan Paton country, you know. This is the conveyor belt for Indian writers like Ronnie Govender, Imraan Coovadia, Ashwin Desai. This is the home of Fred Khumalo, Gcina Mhlophe, Bessie Head, Lewis Nkosi, Sifiso Mzobe, RRR Dhlomo (the first black writer to write a novel in English), Herbert Dhlomo (first black man to write a drama in English, not to mention being an acclaimed poet), Mazisi Kunene, the first Poet Laureate in South Africa. (And did I mention that one Darryl Earl David, who brought the UNESCO City of Literature to Durban in the first place, worked for over 25 years in Durban as the only Indian lecturer of Afrikaans in SA?) Make no mistake, we ran a compelling campaign.

Continue reading their conversation here.