To close the WZ Book Club year of 2022, the readers went down to the sea, to Beach Blanc Cafe next to the lighthouse on Woodbridge Island to hear the story of The Skipper’s Daughter by Woman Zone founder Nancy Richards and published by Karavan Press. Nancy was in conversation with artist Kim Gurney, the author of a book called Panya Routes. Listen here for some salty tales!
Artist, academic, writer Kim Gurney visited five different Independent Art Spaces in five different African cities: Nairobi, Accra, Addis Ababa, Cairo and Dar es Salaam. She came back with a changed mind, fresh thinking and some very different outlooks on the future, of art, cities and society in general. The result, a book to change your mind too, called Panya Routes (Motto).
Please join us for the second Karavan Press Literary Festival on Saturday, 3 December 2022, at Karavan Press’s headquarters (6 Banksia Road, Rosebank, Cape Town). Ticket numbers are limited, so please book early to avoid disappointment. Let’s talk books again!
“When you live a life of reading, you live like a cat, you experience nine lives,” Premier Alan Winde said at the opening ceremony of the second Cape Flats Book Festival, and added: “There’s nothing like a good book, nothing.” Totally agreed!
And when you live a life of reading, you get to hang out with the coolest of people – readers and writers!
This weekend, readers and writers gathered at the West End Primary School in Mitchells Plain to celebrate the wealth and wonder of literature, and it was an honour to participate. According to the organisers, the festival is “an act of hope, an opportunity to dream beyond our circumstances.” Indeed. And every minute of it was literary delight.
Great vibes, great sessions, laughter and wisdom, lots of connecting and reconnecting and simple sharing – of experience, ideas and the love of books.
Karavan Press authors participating: Joy Watson, Nancy Richards, Lester Walbrugh, Cathy Park Kelly and Joanne Hichens.
The second day of the festival was a little bit quieter, but smaller audience create more intimate interactions and often strong bonds are forged not only between authors and their fans, but also between the authors themselves. Writing is mostly a solitary and often lonely occupation, and it is simply wonderful to encounter others in the same boat and feel slightly less alone in the world.
And when you are lucky, you get to hug Oaky 🙂
Thank you to everyone who made this fantastic event possible!
Hope to see everyone at the next Cape Flats Book Festival!
The longlists for SA’s most prestigious annual literary awards for non-fiction and fiction – the Sunday Times Literary Awards – have been announced in partnership with Exclusive Books. Karavan Press has two titles on each list. Congratulations to all longlisted authors, and extra literary hugs to Karavan Press authors: Karen Jennings, Nick Mulgrew, Nancy Richards and Cathy Park Kelly!
This is the 21st year of the Sunday Times fiction prize. The criteria stipulate that the winning novel should be one of “rare imagination and style … a tale so compelling as to become an enduring landmark of contemporary fiction”.
EKOW DUKER — CHAIR Oil-field engineer turned banker turned writer, Ekow Duker grew up in Ghana, studied in the UK, the US and France and now lives and works in Joburg. His debut novels, White Wahala and Dying in New York, were published in 2014 and were followed in 2016 by The God Who Made Mistakes, and in 2019 by his fourth and most ambitious novel, Yellowbone.
KEVIN RITCHIE Ritchie spent 27 years at what is today Independent Media, including editing the company’s smallest daily newspaper, the Diamond Fields Advertiser in Kimberley, and its flagship, The Star, in Joburg. He received several journalism awards during his career and wrote the two-volume Reporting the Courts – A Handbook for South African Journalists. He also co-authored The A-Z of South African Politics (Jacana 2019). After leaving journalism in 2018, Ritchie founded a media consultancy which provides communication services, training for journalists and communicators and coaching for editors and CEOs. He writes a syndicated weekly opinion column in the Saturday Star.
NOMBONISO GASA Writer and political analyst, Gasa is a research fellow at the Centre for Law and Society and Adjunct Professor at the School of Public Law at the University of Cape Town. In the early ’90s, Gasa was part of the ANC’s Commission for the Women’s Emancipation of Women. Gasa has been published widely in newspapers and academic journals, including Women in South African History (HSRC), which she edited in 2007. She has sat in several public positions, including the Commission for Gender Equality, Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) and Development Bank of Southern Africa. Gasa has a long history in politics, feminism and women’s rights activism extending to her teenage years which saw her arrested several times by the apartheid government.
The award will be bestowed on a book that presents “the illumination of truthfulness, especially those forms of it that are new, delicate, unfashionable and fly in the face of power”, and that demonstrates “compassion, elegance of writing, and intellectual and moral integrity”.
GRIFFIN SHEA — CHAIR Shea is the founder of Bridge Books, an independent bookstore in downtown Johannesburg, and the author of a young adult novel, The Golden Rhino. Bridge Books focuses on African literature and on finding new ways of getting books to readers. The store’s non-profit African Book Trust is the lead partner in the Literary District project, a collaboration among booksellers, city agencies, businesses and other volunteers. Before opening Bridge Books, Griffin worked as a journalist for 15 years, mostly with the international news agency Agence France-Press (AFP).
NOMAVENDA MATHIANE Mathiane has been a journalist for over 35 years. Her writing career began in 1975 as a reporter at the World Newspapers and she later joined Frontline magazine, where she specialised in writing about life in South African townships. Since then she has worked for most of the major South African newspapers. Her last journalist job was writing for Business Day as the legislature reporter. Mathiane has written three books: Beyond the Headlines,South Africa: Diary of Troubled Times and Eyes in the Night: An Untold Zulu Story. She currently teaches isiZulu at a private primary school.
BONGANI NGQULUNGA Ngqulunga is with the University of Johannesburg where he currently serves as director of the Johannesburg Institute for Advanced Study (JIAS). He is the author of The Man Who Founded the ANC: A Biography of Pixley ka IsakaSeme, which won multiple awards, including the Sunday Times Non-Fiction Award in 2018. Ngqulunga was educated at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and at Brown University in the US, where he obtained a doctoral degree.
It was smaller, more intimate, but simply fabulous; and the new venue – Bertha House – with its beautiful spaces and light, is a great hit. The conversation were engaging and inspiring. Books were acquired, signed and eagerly dipped into. I think we all were feeling re-energised by these two days of listening to our literary heroes and discovering new voices.
It was fantastic to hear Joy Watson talk in public about her debut novel – The Other Me – for the first time and to see her signing copies of the book afterwards. And Nancy Richards told more beautiful stories about her memoir – or ‘mumoir’, as she call the memoir about her mum, The Skipper’s Daughter.
The festival offered a few workshops in the runup to the main event and Karavan Press authors Melissa A. Volker and Lester Walbrugh participated in the non-fiction and script writing workshops respectively.
Thank you to Vasti, Frankie, Mervyn and the entire Book Lounge team, all the sponsors, the Bertha House and all the amazing authors for these few days of literary magic!
We are all looking forward to the next one – pandemic etc. allowing – in September!