Thursday, October 25, 2007

*New* poetry: The home coming by Thamsanqa N. Ncube

Thamsanqa Never Ncube was born in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, where he attended school at Luveve as well as Founders High Schools. After completing his Accounting Management Studies at the Bulawayo Polytechnic College, Mr. Ncube immigrated to South Africa, where he lectured in Business studies at various colleges, before opening his own Business Training College, which he successfully managed for 3 years. He lives in Pretoria with his wife and son. This poem is extracted from his book Mureza … In the Shadow of the Flag.

The home coming - Thamsanqa N. Ncube

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Talking About Books at UCT

Conveners: Gail Fincham (UCT) & Barbara Basel (English Academy) Speakers: Peter Anderson, Sandra Dodson, Gail Fincham & Stephen Watson.

All four books to be discussed have either just come out or are about to be published.

Award winners: Russel Brownlee, Michiel Heyns, Ken Barris & David Schalkwyk.

Date: Saturday, 3 November 2007
Time: 09:45 (registration)
Venue: UCT Arts Building 100


Talking About Books

09:45-10:25 Registration
10:25-10:30 Welcome Barbara Basel (President)
10:30-11:00 Foundling’s Island (Collection of poetry) Peter Anderson
11:00-11:30 Water to Land: A Collection of Birth Stories (Biography) Sandra Dodson
11:30-11:45 Tea
11:45-12:15 Literary Landscapes: from Modernism to Postcolonialism (Criticism) Gail Fincham
12:15-12:45 The Light Echo (Collection of poetry) Stephen Watson
13:00-14:00 Lunch
14:00-15:00 Presentation of Awards
15:00 Closing remarks Gail Fincham

Awards to be presented

Olive Schreiner Prize 2006
Russel Brownlee
Garden of the Plagues (Human & Rousseau, 2005)

Thomas Pringle Awards 2006
Michiel Heyns
Reviews in the Sunday Independent

Short Story:
Ken Barris
‘The Quick Brown Fox’ (New Contrast, 31 (2))

Literary Article:
David Schalkwyk
‘Race, Body and Language in Shakespeare’s Sonnets and Plays’ (English Studies in Africa, 47 (2))

Registration fee (inclusive of morning tea and lunch)
English Academy members R120
Non-members R130
Pensioners R100
Full-time students R80

*payment can be made at the door

UCT Arts Building, Lecture theatre 100
(Lunch is at the UCT Staff Club)

Secure parking is available in the parking lot above the Kramer Building on Middle campus

For catering purposes, please rsvp before 31 October to:
Naomi Nkealah
Tel/Fax: 011 717 9339
(Weekdays 09:00-12:00)
Gail Fincham

Launch of Willemien de Villiers' The Virgin in the Treehouse

Jacana Media and WORDSWORTH BOOKS take great pleasure in inviting you to the launch of Willemien de Villiers' book, The Virgin in the Treehouse.

Date: Thursday, 25 October 2007

Time: 17h30 for 18h00.

Venue: WORDSWORTH BOOKS, Shop 7, Gardens Centre, Mill Street, Gardens.

Snacks & drinks will be served.

We look forward to seeing you there.


Tel: (021) 461-8464 or email:
by Wednesday 24 October 2007.

The Virgin in the Treehouse

A young woman with an unshakeable faith in the Immaculate Conception awaits celestial instruction while living in a treehouse at the back of a friend's home. A failed artist whose deepest desires are only ever revealed to her in the dreams which she never remembers. A wise woman who lives in a red car. A domestic worker whose daily atrocity forms the fabric of her life. And the King whose chest is home to a bird of paradise. These are some of the unforgettable characters in Willemien de Villiers' new novel, The Virgin in the Treehouse. Her delicate touch and sensual flair for storytelling is both thought-provoking and timely.

About the author

Willemien de Villiers is an artist and writer. A Fine Arts graduate, she manipulates slip-cast commercial greenware to create unique clay narratives.She has published two novels - Kitchen Casualties, Jacana 2003; The Virgin in the Treehouse, Jacana 2007 - as well as several short stories in various collections. She lives in Cape Town with her family, below Muizenberg Peak at the start of Peck's Valley.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Sunday Times looking for Books Editor

Permanent skilled level position in the Media sector at SUNDAY TIMES in Rosebank in South Africa (Gauteng). Benefits: Medical Aid, Pension Fund.

Purpose of the Job:

To write a weekly book column, provide feature content on books and to manage book-related projects for the Sunday Times Main Responsibilities:

*To generate story ideas and produce reviews, feature and news stories on books
*To attend and report on book-related events and launches
*To source, commission and edit book-related content
*To build and maintain a wide range of contacts in the book world
*To generate ideas and feature stories for a books website
*To coordinate the Sunday Times Book Awards and other related events Requirements:

*A university degree, preferably a post-graduate degree in the humanities
*Five years of relevant experience in journalism
*Experience in feature writing and editing
*Valid driver's licence and own vehicle essential Knowledge:

*Informed and knowledgeable about current affairs
*Computer literacy Skills:
*Feature writing
*Team player
*Problem solving
*Strategic thinking Attitudes:
*Deadline driven
*Attention to detail
*Not tied to the clock
*Ability to work under pressure We are an Employment Equity employer and as such, preference will be given to candidates who add to the diversity of our organization.

Apply online before 24/10/2007.
Please note that recruiters can expire or delete jobs at any time.

Shenaaz Moola Phone Number: +27 11 280 3027 Fax Number: +27 11 280 3034 Email Address:

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Lauri Kubuitsile wins BTA/Anglo Platinum Short Story Competition 2007

The 13th BTA/Anglo Platinum short story competition announced on Thursday night that Botswana national, Lauri Kubuitsile had won first prize for her story “The Christmas Wedding”. Kubuitsile (43), a published author and winner of a number of writing competitions, was awarded her first-prize cheque of R25 000 at the prize giving ceremony in Auckland Park. Lauri’s story, about a woman who realises on the morning of her wedding day that her groom might have been complicit in the death of his ex lover, was also awarded the platinum prize for Creativity. The competition, with the highest submission of any writing competition in the world, has been very successful in raising awareness about writing and reading. The prize money for the competition, totalling R65 000 is among the highest for any short story writing competition.

Commenting on her achievement Lauri Kubuitsile couldn’t yet quite believe that she has won both first place as well as the creativity prize. "Winning the creativity prize was a wonderful honour. As a full time writer, it’s incredible to win a fiction competition with such wonderful prize money. I have a writers’ group of four women and we encourage each other to keep on writing. They will all be thrilled to hear about this prize!"

The second-place prize of R15 000 was awarded to Trevor Crisp, a 76 year old retired Johannesburg resident who never managed to finish high school. His winning story, ‘The Landscape’ was the first piece of writing he had ever entered in a competition. Trevor said he felt elated at having won a prize: “Even now I cannot grasp that I was successful in reaching the finals! I draw inspiration for my stories from situations and characters I have encountered throughout my life and travels in Africa, and this particular story was an amalgamation of many of these experiences. I’d like to convey my heartfelt thanks to Beulah and the competition organisers”.

In third place was “The Wordsmith” written by Jenny Robson, who has previously won a number of awards for youth literature. Fourth place was awarded to 23 year old Capetonian Tsireledzo Mushoma for “A New Beginning”. Fifth place was awarded to Lourens Erasmus for “Soccer Farm”. Lourens, also a first time competition entrant, achieved double success when a member of South African production company Creative Media International optioned Soccer Farm for film rights.

The competition, managed by reading activist Beulah Thumbadoo, has helped to give voice to thousands of ordinary South Africans and promoted a wealth of local writing. More than 14000 stories have been sent in from throughout Southern Africa since its inception. “Every other development item on our national agenda is meaningless if we don't get reading right. Literacy is crucial - we need to become a nation of readers and writers, and Africa needs books if this is to become a reality,” said Minister Mosibudi Mangena when delivering the keynote address.

Entrants were asked to write a gripping and original story of between 4500 to 5000 words. The competition is unique in that it focuses on content over form, understanding that many entrants will be writing in their second or third language. Story quality and creativity are the key criteria and entrants are not penalized for imperfect grammar and spelling. As such, and evidenced by this year’s list of winners, stories are submitted from all walks of life throughout Southern Africa.

Eric Miyeni, successful author and a member of the 2007 competition panel of judges commented: “I am proud to have been involved with this competition, which is an incredible tool in cultivating a writing, and more importantly, a reading culture in South Africa and the entire African continent. This year saw a very high calibre of submissions.

Congratulations to all who submitted their stories, and particularly the winners.”

This is the eighth year that Anglo Platinum has sponsored the competition. Anglo Platinum is committed to supporting the development of education in South Africa and does much towards building schools and infrastructure. The short story competition is a special creative project: “We are very pleased to be associated with this noble project, which is all about promoting reading and writing in our society. As part of our corporate social responsibility and commitment to promoting adult basic education and training (ABET) within our company and society in general, we believe our association with BTA is crucial and has, thus far, contributed immensely to promoting reading among the young and old." said Anglo Platinum.

Biography: Lauri Kubuitsile Lauri Kubuitsile, a 43 year old woman living in Botswana, is an award winning author of many short stories and three published novels, two of which are novellas in the Detective Kate Gomolemo series. The first novel in the series, The Fatal Payout, is on the list of prescribed books for junior secondary libraries in Botswana. Murder for profit, the second in the series, is due for release in October 2007.

Some of Lauri’s more notable writing achievements include her first place award in the Bessie Head Memorial Prize Competition in 1999, and her nomination for the Botswana Writer of the Year Award in 2005.

The BTA/Anglo Platinum Short Story Competition is now in its 13th year.

The prize money for the competition, totalling R65 000 (with R25 000 for first prize), is among the highest for any short story competition.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

*New* short fiction: Six Millions Ways to Die by Mbonisi P. Ncube

Mbonisi P. Ncube is a Zimbabwean short story writer, poet and playwright. He is currently working on his first novel, The Munhumutapa Candidate.

  • Six Millions Ways to Die - Mbonisi P. Ncube
  • Centre for the Book’s Community Publishing Project finalist for ACT Cultural Development Award

    The Centre for the Book’s Community Publishing Project is a finalist for the ACT Cultural Development Award 2007 sponsored by Distell, the other finalists are Art Bank Joburg and Art for Humanity.

    The Community Publishing Project (CPP) Based at the Centre for the Book, the CPP provides advice, funding and technical support to writers and writers’ groups in South Africa, to help them develop publishing skills and to undertake the publishing and marketing of works produced in their communities. The Centre for the Book is a specialist unit of the National Library of South Africa.

    Over a six year period 29 books have been published with grants from the CPP. Writers and writers’ groups from all regions and working in a range of indigenous South African languages have received grants and have independently published books.

    The Community Publishing Project is currently funded by Nasou Via Afrika, it was started with an initial donation over three years from Via Afrika and NB Publishers. It has also received funding from the MAPPP Seta and the Mpumalanga Provincial Library Service.

    Colleen Higgs, who has managed this project since its inception says, “I am delighted that the Community Publishing Project has been recognized in this way. It has been my privilege to manage the project and to see each book take shape at its own pace. I have traveled to remote corners of South Africa and have met writers in all these places. The Community Publishing Project gives people a foot in the door of the big world of publishing. It demystifies publishing and the book world for grantees and has created wonderful opportunities for many of the people who have participated in the project."

    For more information go to and

    The annual Arts & Culture Trust (ACT) Awards are presented by Nedbank and celebrate andrecognise outstanding individuals, organisations or agencies that have played an integral role in the development and promotion of arts, culture and creativity in South Africa. TheACT Awards 2007 is supported by CLASSICfeel Magazine, the Cape Town radio partner is Fine Music Radio 101.3 and the Gauteng radio partner is 102.7 Classic fM.

    According to Ismail Mahomed, convenor of the 2007 Awards adjudication panel, “the finalists for 2007 reflect the extremely high calibre of people who champion the advancement of the arts. These finalists stand high amongst a broad range of individuals and organizations nominated by the public. Short-listing these finalists from amongst a group of people who each deserve an accolade for their commitment to the advancement of the arts was no easy task.”

    For more information -

    Tuesday, October 02, 2007

    *New* poetry: tlhokomeliso by Rethabile Masilo

    Rethabile Masilo is a native of Lesotho living and working in Paris, France. Mr. Masilo enjoys reading and writing poetry. He runs two blogs, Poéfrika and Sotho , and is also co-editor of a literary magazine, Canopic Jar . He is married and has two children.

    tlhokomeliso - Rethabile Masilo

    Monday, October 01, 2007

    Kalk Bay Books and Jacana invitation to Love and Courage reading

    Kalk Bay Books and Jacana invite you to a reading from

    Love and Courage by author Pregs Govender

    As a struggle activist and ANC MP in South Africa's first
    democratic Parliament, Pregs Govender has made her
    mark as a woman and politician with integrity and guts.
    In Love and Courage she shares her life story and her experiences as an "insubordinate" woman.

    DATE: Saturday 6 October
    TIME: 6:00 for 6:30pm
    PLACE: 124 Main Road, Kalk Bay
    RSVP by Friday 5 October to or 021 788 2266.

    Drinks and snacks will be served.