Operation Oysterhood: 27 May

OYSTERHOOD is reclusiveness or solitude, or an overwhelming desire to stay at home.

— @HaggardHawks

With Joanne and Melissa at EB Cavendish

A day of two interviews.

In the morning, Harlan Cloete and Jo-ann Prinsloo invited me to the studios of Radio KC in Paarl to pre-record an interview about André’s life and writing for the occasion of his 86th birthday (29 May). It was wonderful to meet them and to be introduced to the amazing work they do at the community radio and to talk about books and stories with people who love both. And it all started with Harlan picking up The Fifth Mrs Brink at Bargain Books and writing to me about it. As a fan of André’s writing, he wanted to mark his birthday and to explore how André’s legacy could be remembered.

It was a pleasure to spend time with the inspiring team of Radio KC and to hear about their involvement in the community and plans for the future.

On my way back home, I decided to stop at Babylonstoren and just go for an autumn walk in their beautiful gardens. Balm for the soul.

In the evening, we gathered – yes, gathered! – at Exclusive Books Cavendish to talk about Death and the After Parties by Joanne Hichens. I had the honour of doing the interview and when I sat down in front of the live audience full of readers/writers, I felt as if I was waking up in a beautiful dream. I think we bookish people are starved for literary events: festivals, readings, launches – all those interactions that inspire us and allow us to grow and connect. We were a socially distanced but proper crowd tonight and it was lovely to see Melissa A. Volker and Cathy Park Kelly in the audience. Melissa is already published by Karavan Press and Cathy’s writing has always made me want to publish her. I hope to have the opportunity to work with her very, very soon …

Be kind. Wear a mask. Support local.

“Physical distancing remains one of the key strategies to curb this pandemic.”


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