The two publishing houses that habe kept Zimbabwean fiction publishing afloat during the country’s hardest time, amaBooks of Bulawayo and Weaver Press of Zimbabwe are going to launch their new fiction anthologies in the next week. On September 19, Weaver Press is launching Writing Free, which features fifteen writers. This anthology is quite promising, given the cross section of writers featured (I am one of them, which makes it even more interesting, of course): Petina Gappah, NoViolet Bulawayo, Ignatius Mabasa, Blessing Musariri and others. Here is the book’s description:
Edited by Irene Staunton
“In this fifth anthology of Zimbabwean short stories from Weaver Press, fifteen writers respond to the topic of ‘writing free’, and offer their thoughts about how and why they wrote as they did. The stories reflect a wide variety of freedoms: from tyranny, from hunger, from abuse, from the shackles of tradition, and even from the traditional constraints of narrative convention.But there are cautionary tales, too. Political change may be liberating for the adults who suffered for it, but will their children share in the euphoria of new-found freedom? Will a departure from domestic poverty to the calm waters of the diaspora deliver all that was hoped for it? Is the grass always greener beyond the fence of a stifling marriage?
Zimbabwe has had more than its share of social and material deprivation in recent years, and people’s responses have taken many forms. Writing Free offers an engaging and kaleidoscopic sample of these, and in doing so gives an intimate portrait of a country in transition.”
On September 24, ‘amaBooks is launching “Where to Now?”, a collection of short stories. The book is scheduled to be published next year by Partheon in the UK. Here is a description of the book: “Within the pages of the book you will meet the prostitute who gets the better of her brothers when they try to marry her off, the wife who is absolved of the charge of adultery, the hero who drowns in a bowser of cheap beer and the poetry slammer who does not get to perform his final poem. And many more.”
This book introduces many new writers, some of whom are very promising; we also have the more famous names in there like NoViolet Bulawayo, Novuyo Rosa Tshuma, and others. A book worth reading over and over again.