FLUID: FREEDOM TO BE – Free short story webinars in preparation for entering the Short.Sharp.Stories competition

We are thrilled to invite you to join Short.Sharp.Stories and All About Writing for two free online short story webinars. They are designed to provide guidance and support to writers who wish to enter the Short.Sharp.Stories competition:

FLUID: FREEDOM TO BE

The sessions are aimed at encouraging new and emerging writers to enter FLUID, as well as to hone their craft.

Register now for both sessions!

Session 1: What is a story and how to write one

Thursday 20 October 2022
17:30 to 19:30 South Africa Time

Hosts Joanne Hichens and Karina Szczurek will focus on the aspects of short story writing, with a particular aim to encourage emerging writers to understand the elements necessary in the creation of a short story. This session will include a mini-workshop, to spark ideas for a story based on the theme FLUID: Freedom To Be. Have a notebook and pen handy.

Session 2: Short Story Q and A

Thursday 3 November 2022
17:30 to 19:30 South Africa Time

In this session we’ll answer questions and field problems. Participants will be encouraged to send in questions beforehand.

During this time we’ll also do a warm-up writing exercise, focus on showing not telling, the cornerstone of good fiction writing.

Short.Sharp.Stories is a proven platform showcasing top and emerging South African writers. However, we welcome all writers over the age of 18, no matter your background or experience, to send in short stories. FLUID seeks to engage fictional expression around identity, culture and society.

Every published writer will receive an honorarium of R 2 000, with a Grand Winner to receive R 10 000. Additional awards will be given at the discretion of Short.Sharp.Stories.

Register now!

The sessions will be recorded for anyone unable to make it on the day.

The Competition

Click here for further information and to download the entry form.

About the facilitators

Joanne Hichens, author and editor, lives in Cape Town. Her crime novels are Out to Score (co-written), Divine Justice, published in the United States, and Sweet Paradise. Her young adult novels, Stained and Riding the Wave, were both shortlisted for the Sanlam Literature Award. Her memoir, Death and the After Partiesexplores the passing of Joanne’s mother, husband, father and mother-in-law within a short period of time, and examines all that happens after death: emotional frenzy, funerals, family strife – the fighting and loving.

Karina Szczurek is an author and founder of Karavan Press. Her debut novel, Invisible Others (2014), was longlisted for the 2015 Sunday Times Barry Ronge Fiction Prize. Her memoir The Fifth Mrs Brinkabout her experiences being married to prominent South African novelist Andre Brink, was published in 2017 and You Make Me Possible: The Love Letters of Karina M. Szczurek and André Brink was published in 2018.

Karavan Press aims to publish books they are passionate about, of any genre and any length. They nurture authors and their creativity, establish strong bonds between their writers and readers, and offer a literary home for those who treasure words and stories. Excellence, integrity, and their love for the book as an object are the cornerstones of Karavan Press.

Blown Away by Books

Dear Readers,

I will be chairing a session at Blown Away by Books, taking place at the Fish Hoek Library between 15 and 17 September. On Friday, I will be speaking with Sara-Jayne Makwala King, Erika Bornman and Cathy Park Kelly about their remarkable, brave memoirs.

Please see the full programme of the festival here: Blown Away by Books

Love,

Karina

Woman Zone interview with Louisa Treger

I interviewed Louisa Treger about her life and books, including her latest, Madwoman (Bloomsbury, 2022) for Woman Zone. Always a great joy to talk to Louisa – an amazing woman writing about other amazing women!

You can listen to the podcast here:

Artscape Conversations – Woman Zone Stories

Book review: Madwoman by Louisa Treger

“If Hell existed in the universe, it was right here,” Nellie Bly thinks to herself only a few days into her confinement on Blackwell’s Island. It is 1887, and the asylum, just off the coast of New York, is “a socially acceptable way of disposing with inconvenient women”. The difference between Nellie and the other women locked up in this hell on earth is that she is there of her own free will. Bly faked insanity to be admitted. She is one of the most dangerous of “inconvenient women” — one with a voice. Madwoman is her story.

Continue reading: Sunday Times

Madwoman ★★★★★
Louisa Treger
Bloomsbury, 2022

Open Book Festival 2022

Vanya Gastrow, Pie-Pacifique Kabalira-Uwase and Fred Khumalo speak to Karina Szczurek about the ongoing vulnerability of foreign nationals in South Africa.

A topic close to my heart. I can’t wait to talk to these remarkable people/authors about their lives and work.

Book your ticket here: Webtickets

Oudrif: The blessings of rain

You could hear the earth sighing with relief and the river bursting with longing. It’s not often that you get to experience rain at Oudrif, even when you are regulars like us. Last weekend, we had a whole rainy day, but also sunshine and warmth and the glory of the flower season all around.

A different kind of light, of being.

We rested, read, went for walks, ate like royalty and returned home with a little bit of calm in our hearts and heads.

And then, there was Jack, one of the rescues from the last CLAWS project I had the privilege to assist with. When he was found, he was barely alive: skeleton and skin, sores all over, starving to death. Seeing him, I did not believe that he would make it. Yet … this weekend, not even a month later, we went for a walk together. His muscles are still learning how to do that – walk, run, play. He is three years old, but all he knew before Jeanine rescued him was a short rope around his neck and a small, merciless enclosure. Despite everything he has suffered through, Jack is full of love and trust, and when he is ready to be adopted after his convalescence in Oudrif, the humans of his forever home will be very lucky to have his beautiful presence in their lives.

If you would like to support Jeanine and CLAWS and at the same time stand a chance to experience the restorative magic of Oudrif for yourself, among other fabulous prizes, you can enter the CLAWS Raffle. Every R50 donated to CLAWS is an entry – it is also the potential to save an animal’s life.

Clanwilliam Animal Welfare Society 

FNB ACCOUNT 629 2008 5504 | Branch 250655

Reference: raffle & email address or send POP to clanclaws AT gmail DOT com | WhatsApp: 083 381 0030

Rosebank Writers Cape Town: Our first event

The Rosebank Writers are a group of writers living and working in Rosebank, Cape Town. We meet once a week on Saturday at 11am at the Alma Café in Alma Road, Rosebank, and talk about our current projects, struggles, achievements and writing and publishing in general. From the onset, we have wanted to not only support one another, but also South African writers in general and to open the space we have created to other writers and readers interested in what we do. Discussions, launches, readings open to the public were always part of the plan for the group, and it gives me great pleasure to invite you to our first event on Saturday, 20 August, at 11am – at the Alma Café, of course. We wanted to celebrate Women’s Month with a discussion about mothers. The authors participating are both longlisted for the Sunday Times Literary Awards this year and have written two remarkable books about mothers. We look forward to seeing you there.