Black Crake books have announced the winners of the first annual Black Crake Book Awards. The local publisher recently hosted their inaugural award giving ceremony, which was held last weekend at the National Museum’s Little Theatre.
The winner for the First Prize was Tlotlo Tsamaase, a final year architectural student at the University of Botswana, with The Skies Fall. Last year, Tsamaase managed to clinch two awards. The first award was the University of Botswana Creative Arts and Culture Awards 2013 in Design Architecture and later on, her novel, Unlettered Skies of the Sublime won first category in the Bessie Head Literature Review.
“I am beyond ecstatic! I would like to thank Black Crake Books for this amazing competition and making publishing so possible for writers in our country. It makes writers feel appreciated,” she said beaming.
The Skies Fall is a young adult science fiction novel set in a futuristic Palapye, Botswana, where people are being sucked up into the sky.
Together with a publishing contract, Tsamaase received a cash prize of P2500.00.
The second prize which included a publishing contract and P1500 was awarded to Julie Adams for her manuscript, Jolly ÔÇô The Life of an Indian girl in Southern Africa.
Third prize was awarded to Leungo Serumola for her manuscript Pleasant Break, and a cash prize of P500. Trailing behind as runner-up was Ronald Boitatotswe with Doves of Green World.
Speaking at the awards giving ceremony, writer Nick Green from Black Crake said he was overwhelmed with the response they got for the competition. He said they received almost 30 entries.
“The awards were a success and they have shown that the talent and desire is there, and we at Black Crake Books are looking forward to unearthing and publishing more talented writers,” said Nick Green.
Black Crake Books was founded by an individual entity with the sole mission of promoting Botswana’s literary voice to the world and nurturing local talent. The company is ideally placed in the country to bring a new era in publishing to Batswana.
Black Crake books have lately been signing more Batswana writers to their publishing stable. Such writers include the famous Mahalapye based writer Lauri Kubuitsile who has just published her latest offering, Vanishings. Other books that have recently been published by Black Crake include Josie, by Maun based writer, Legodile Seganabeng, My Forever Heartache, by Bernard Horton and Boathouse to Botswana by Nick Green.
University of Botswana lecturer and world renowned writer, Barolong Seboni, said he was pleased with efforts made by Black Crake Books.
Speaking during an interview after the award ceremony, Seboni explained how important it is to tell stories about Botswana to the world.
“There has never been a better time for young Batswana writers to get recognition for their stories out there. Unlike before, publishers have now developed a keen interest in reading Botswana literature. ”