Friday, July 22, 2011

Needed, an association of Caribbean children's book authors and children's book illustrators

In my last post I shared with you the great artwork on the books produced by the Literacy 1-2-3 Project, Ministry of Education, Jamaica. In this post I will show you illustrations from books I picked up on my recent trip to the Eastern Caribbean. Why the continued focus on illustrations? Because even though the saying is 'you can't tell a book by its cover', the cover pulls us towards the book, and for picture story books, the artwork is an integral part of bringing the story to life, of enchanting the reader. And this artwork speaks for itself.

As I think of the talented people we have in the area of children's writing and illustrating, I wish we had a vibrant association of Caribbean children's authors. We tried before, you know, but that was before the era of emails and so it was very difficult to keep in touch, although we did achieve some things, amongst them, a UNESCO sponsored conference of children's writers. So perhaps it's time to try again.
I wish we had an association of Caribbean children's book authors and children's book illustrators. I think that we could achieve something if we got together. For example, how many Caribbean children's authors know that there is an international conference here next month, the International Association of School Librarianship? Librarians sometimes buy multicultural children's books.

If we got together would more people know that we exist? Would we buy books from each other? I continue to think so. For those who are asking, "So why doesn't she do something about it, herself, then?" I reply, "I was there before emails, using carbon paper to send correspondence to the various territories." Sounds hilarious, eh! Sounds prehistoric, eh! Okay, guys! For those of you who have just arrived and seen this brave new world of technology, all these developments came very quickly indeed, or so it seems to me. So today I do my part by sharing my discoveries with you. Here are the latest.

From Barbados: Christophore, written by June Stoute, illustrated by Jehanne Silva-Freimane, 2008. Also From Barbados: Anansi and the Herald, The Fowl-Cock, also written by June Stoute, illustrated by Jehanne Silva-Freimane, 2010.

It's just by chance that I picked up two books by the same author (at the airport). I already had copies of the other books for sale. However, if you look back through previous posts you'll see books by another Barbadian author

From St. Lucia: for the older age group, Who is Smarter than Galiber Guess? written by Anthea Bousquet, illustrated by Ted Sandiford, 2011.


  1. What a pleasure and surprise! Thank you for purchasing and highlighting our books. Jehanne will be very pleased to read this post.
    I'm a member of the Society of Children Books Writer and Illustrators (SCBWI). There is a chapter for the Caribbean headed up by Joanne Gail Johnson of Trinidad. Perhaps we should see how we can work with Joanne to have a vibrant regional chapter. Most of this organization's focus is on published authors and helping unpublished authors find agents and publishers. Indies (Independent Publishers), like myself, have limited privileges - our titles cannot be entered in competitions.
    That aside, I've attended very valuable workshops run by the British Isle chapter.

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