Monday, April 17, 2017

Despatches: BookFusion, Lignum Vitae Awards, Talking Trees Literary Fiesta


 

 Bookfusion: Weeks  ago I should have mentioned BookFusion, an enterprise recently established by a young couple.  They did a presentation at one of our coffee mornings. It’s a space where you can buy Jamaican books  (children’s; yes, children’s!) and it’s also the digital library for books from the Ministry of Education. This is what we always said we wanted and here we are dragging our feet again. Instead of sending a hallelujah chorus (no disrespect especially at this time of year) and taking advantage of it, we are  wandering around and wondering what next to do.  (This is directed to myself as I am not having the big writing weekend I planned.  A little bit  devastating to find you have all the time really and you’re still stuck  . . .)

Heaps of Ministry books are on it, (you know the ones you can’t buy, because the Ministry doesn’t sell books): Dr. Bird Reading Series, the Blue Mahoe (which came after the Dr. Bird) for grades 7-9, and even Literacy 1-2-3, that great series I managed and was so upset that they weren’t in all schools or available for sale.  Well they  are there in all their splendour!  And you can borrow for free.  I was at a meeting with some educators (vague enough for all to be unidentified) and I mentioned it, and someone was quite astonished, said he had heard nothing about it, and looked it up immediately. Delighted! I gather information had been sent out to all. However, I suppose sometimes more than one messenger has to go out  with the news.

So please look up BookFusion and pass the word around.  Be another messenger. There are two sections, one the digital library (please note this, all those schools that wanted access to Literacy 1-2-3),  and the other, the bookstore. Below is a link to an article about BookFusion.


Since its capital injection from First Angels, the company has added Carlong Publishers, Blue Banyan Books, LMH Publishing and a "few other local publishers" to its client list.” (Quote from the article above)

This is a link to the bookstore.


 

Lignum Vitae Awards 2017: The next piece of news is that the Lignum Vitae Awards are on this year. Please check the Jamaican Writers Society website.  Entries for this year should be sent in by June 30, 2017.


My dear fellow writers, I know that you have been working on your story/novel since the last  awards in 2015, either because you couldn’t finish the story for the 2015  competition, or you didn’t get shortlisted then, or  you just got the idea to start it then when you realized that maybe you could be just as good as some of those who won, or. . . .

Talking Trees Literary Fiesta  is also on this year, May 27 at Treasure Beach. The last time I went it was beautiful. I wrote a story (first draft) the next weekend as a result of all the inspiration  and creativity I felt.

The Fiesta will feature poet and author, Olive Senior. She will share the stage with the newly named Jamaican Poet Laureate Lorna Goodison, who was the featured reader in 2015. Other readers include Malachi Smith, Roland Watson-Grant, Margaret Bernal, Ann-Margaret Lim, Yashika Graham . . . . (quote from the Website.)
This promises to be wonderful.