Harare’s Book Café attracted a capacity audience for the launch of the 2014 Caine Prize anthology, The Gonjon Pin, where four of the authors – Isabella Matambanadzo, Violet Masilo, Lawrence Hoba and Philani Nyoni – were in attendance to read from their work, sign copies of the book and to discuss issues relating to their writing and the Caine Prize.
The authors responded to a variety of questions, including whether or not the Prize influenced their work, why they wrote short stories as opposed to novels or poetry, how to inject hope into “African stories”, what constitutes an “African story” and the absence of laughter in the “African story”.
The Gonjon Pin features 17 short stories by the writers from across the African continent, including three other Zimbabwean writers who were unable to attend: Barbara Mhangami, Bryony Rheam and Tendai Huchu. The other writers published in the anthology are from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and Somalia.
The event was chaired by Roger Stringer of Harare City Library and the discussion facilitated by Memory Chirere. The Guest of Honour was the Kenyan Embassy Consul, Ms Damary Nafula.
The book, published by 'amaBooks in Zimbabwe with the support of the Beit Trust, is available in outlets across the country, and as an ebook through shop.mazwi.co.
'amaBooks would like to thank British Council Zimbabwe, Harare City Library, The Red Fox Hotel, The Book Cafe, Lawrence Hoba and the other writers for their support of the event.
Photographs courtesy of Lawrence Hoba and British Council Zimbabwe