JUST WRITE IT COURSE: How To Write That Book!

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THE BENEFITS

  1. You can create and earn an extra income.
    2. In your business you can upsell your products and services.
    3. Achieve and accomplish your lifelong goal of writing a book.
    4. Imagine completing your book and be on route to publishing it in 30 days or less.
    5. Writing a book gives you instant Expert recognition and appeal.
    6. Your book is a calling card for your business services.
    7. Expand your marketing opportunities.
    8. You will gain credibility among your peers and network.
    9. Increase your speaking engagements at conferences and seminars.
  2. Leave a legacy in the British Library legal deposit for generations to come.

MEET THE TEAM

Winsome Duncan – Book Confidence Coach and ‘Just Write It’ Project Manager

Meet entrepreneur and the Founder of Peaches Publications Winsome Duncan, she is passionate about books, and is a bestselling author with eight books in her repertoire. Winsome is an awarding entrepreneur and a sitcom writer for ‘Keeping Up With The Brokers’. Her work has featured on BBC iPlayer, SKY &BBC LONDON.

Teju Chosen – Book Mentor and ‘Just Write It’ Assistant Project,Manager

Career Coach, Teju Chosen is a Master’s educated Writer who is Author of the forthcoming book, “HOW TO GET PAID MORE THAN YOUR BOSS” and CEO of Exceptional Coaching Ltd. She is also a Poet, Playwright and Book Mentor who has held Writing workshops in Prisons (including running a magazine in HMP Wandsworth), Schools, Universities and Mental Health Institutes.

Book HERE

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Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire by Akala – review

In a powerful, polemical narrative, the rapper charts his past and the history of black Britain

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In 2010, UK rap artist Akala dropped the album DoubleThink, and with it, some unforgettable words. “First time I saw knives penetrate flesh, it was meat cleavers to the back of the head,” the north London rapper remembers of his childhood. Like so much of his work, the song Find No Enemy blends his life in the struggle of poverty, race, class and violence, with the search for answers. “Apparently,” it continues, “I’m second-generation black Caribbean. And half white Scottish. Whatever that means.”

Any of the million-plus people who have since followed Akala – real name Kingslee Daley – know that the search has taken him into the realm of serious scholarship. He is now known as much for his political analysis as for his music, and, unsurprisingly, his new book, Natives, is therefore long awaited. What was that meat cleaver incident? What was his relationship with his family and peers like growing up? How did he make the journey from geeky child, to sullen and armed teenager, to writer, artist and intellectual?

Natives delivers the answers, and some of them are hard to hear. In one of the most touching of many personal passages in the book, Akala retraces the steps by which he was racialised – as a mixed-race child – into blackness, and by which he realised that his mother, who fiercely protected her children’s pride in their heritage, enrolling them among other things in a Pan-African Saturday school, was racialised as white.

“Though my mum was far from rich and had a great many sufferings of her own to speak of, she still shared a degree of racial discomfort when faced by the questioning eyes of her five-year-old son,” he writes.

The relationship between different generations of Akala’s family is a recurring and fascinating thread. He writes – in a powerful chapter about the failures of the education system to nurture the talent of black children – of how his father and his uncles emerged from their own experiences of the British school system to regard it as a “cultural and intellectual war zone”. And as the grandchild of Jamaicans who came to Britain as adults during the Windrush era, Akala’s generation is the last with a direct connection to the countries of their heritage.

“How will our children and their children after that navigate being born black in Britain and of Caribbean heritage without the wisdom and laughter, the cooking and cussing, of Caribbean-born grandparents?” he asks.

Travel, like education and the dynamics of his own family, is a constant theme throughout Natives. Akala’s unique experience as a sportsman – he played football seriously throughout his childhood – a scholar and a performing artist, give him the content and confidence to address “Linford’s lunchbox”, in a withering critique of British narratives around black sporting achievement, and the global histories of oppression. His thoughts on racism run from Japanese imperialism to apartheid in British-run Hong Kong, the Arab-African slave trade and black identities in 15th-century Spain.

But Akala is at his best destroying the comfortable myths that are invoked by white fragility to downplay attempts to correct the historical record. Like the idea that slavery is really the fault of Africans for selling their “own people”. Or the claim that Britain should feel good about the fact that its historical conduct was better than that of the Belgians or the Nazis. “It’s true, but it’s a shit boast,” he writes. This, like other tropes so regularly wielded against people like him, and me – who have the audacity to critique Britain while being black or brown – are beautifully ridiculed in a series of bullet-point lists.

Akala makes it clear that he is not brimming with optimism. But reading Natives – witnessing the kind of disruptive, aggressive intellect that a new generation is closely watching – I can’t help but be just that.

Afua Hirsch is the author of Brit(ish).

 Natives by Akala is published by Two Roads (£16.99). To order a copy for £14.44 go to guardianbookshop.com or call 0330 333 6846. Free UK p&p over £10, online orders only. Phone orders min p&p of £1.99

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/may/20/natives-akala-review-destroying-myths-of-race-afia-hirsch

YA Author Interview: Alex Wheatle

Alex Wheatle

 

The Manchester-based author who’s won a life-changing $165k book prize

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A Manchester-based author whose debut novel was initially rejected by British publishers has won one of the world’s richest literary prizes.

Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi – who’s from Uganda and moved to the UK 17 years ago – has won one of the Windham Campbell Prizes from Yale University in the US.

She will receive $165,000 (£119,000). “I haven’t been earning for a long, long time,” she says.

“I really put everything into writing. So for this to happen is unbelievable.”

The prize money is more than double the amount that the Booker Prize winner gets, and organisers say it’s the richest award dedicated to literature after the Nobel Prize.

Makumbi is one of eight writers to receive Windham Campbell Prizes this year spanning fiction, non-fiction, drama and poetry – and is the only winner to have published just one full-length work.

Two other British writers are also on the list, both for non-fiction – Sarah Bakewelland Olivia Laing.

‘Too African’

The prizes were created by writer Donald Windham and also carry the name of his partner Sandy M Campbell. They were first awarded in 2013 to “provide writers with the opportunity to focus on their work independent of financial concerns”.

Makumbi said news of the award came out of the blue. “It’s American, and normally it’s people who have got so many books [behind them],” she said. “So I’m surprised how I was one of them.”

Makumbi’s debut novel Kintu was first published in Kenya four years ago after British publishers rejected it for being “too African”. It was finally released in the UK this January.

The author said British publishers and readers like to have something they can relate to – be it Western characters or familiar settings and storylines – if they’re reading about Africa.

But she describes Kintu as “proper, proper Africa”.

The book conjures myths and legends to tell the story of a Ugandan family who believe they have been cursed over 250 years.

“I had really locked Europe out,” Makumbi says. “But it was a little bit too much – the language, the way I wrote it – they [Brits] were not used to that kind of writing. But they are beginning now to open up I think.

“Readers are realising, OK, if I want to explore Africa I’d rather be told from an African point of view rather than being told things that I’m expected to want to know.”

‘It’s about getting a paycheque’

Makumbi was a high school teacher before moving to the UK to pursue her dream of a writing career. She began by studying creative writing in Manchester, then wrote Kintu while doing a PhD in Lancaster.

The Windham Campbell Prize will help spread the word about the book – but for Makumbi, for now at least, the prize money will be the thing that changes her life.

“I would like to say it’s more about getting to be known and whatever, but mainly it’s about getting a paycheque,” she admits.

“It’s mainly about [doing] ordinary things that other people do that have a job. I have a partner but he’s not earning much and I’ve not been really pulling my weight.

“I’ve just been taking and taking, and we are a working class family, so it’s huge. And then, of course, now I can go and do research in different countries for my next project.”

‘Shocked’ by British life

She didn’t have to travel far to research a short story collection that will come out next January. It’s title is Love Made in Manchester.

“I write the stories as a way of writing back to Ugandans, informing them what happens to us,” she says. “I’m telling them, ‘You want to come to Britain? Hang on a minute. First read my story.'”

So what impression will Ugandans get of Britain if they do?

“It’s not the world that they’ve been told it is. When you’re in Uganda, Britain is the London Eye, Buckingham Palace, The Savoy, The Ritz – because this is how Britain markets itself.

“You never see the working class. That is what takes you by surprise. It’s just shocking.

“You come here and see the working class and you’re like, I should have paid attention to Dickens!”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-43315380

Tharp appointed director of The Africa Centre

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Kenneth Olumuyiwa Tharp has been appointed director of The Africa Centre, an organisation with a 50-year legacy of supporting writers from Africa and its diaspora. Tharp takes over from interim director Mark Higham.

Oliver Andrews, chairman of the centre, welcomed Tharp as “one of the most respected and well liked cultural figures in the UK”. Notably he served as chief executive of The Place, a leading centre for contemporary dance development, for nearly a decade between 2007 and 2016. He also has served on various arts boards, including The Royal Opera House. He was made a CBE for services to dance in the 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours.

His appointment marks the beginning of “an exciting new phase” for the centre, including a “major capital project”, with the aim of redefining it as an international centre for contemporary African culture, business and innovation.

Over the years African writers including Ben Okri, Dambudzo Merechera and Alice Walker have spent time at the centre. It also hosts its own book fair, Book Week Africa, with other literary initiatives including a symposium on African Women in Publishing and Pan African, an organisation dedicated to supplying books for students in Africa.

Under Tharp’s direction, the centre – which has been located on Great Suffolk Street in Southwark for two years – will be developed to encompass a 300 person-capacity performance venue and The Hub, a flexible co-working space and accelerator for entrepreneurs and creatives, both contained within neighbouring railway arches. Additional facilities include a gallery, meeting and broadcast suite, the Africa Learning & Research Centre and a new café, opening onto the street, with a pan-African culinary offering.

Tharp said: “I am thrilled at being given the opportunity to lead The Africa Centre through its next exciting phase of transformation and renewal … The Africa Centre has a key role to play in making tangible the cultural richness and creative energy emanating from the African continent, and in sharing the vibrancy of its 54 nations and extensive diaspora, with as many people as possible.”

https://www.thebookseller.com/news/kenneth-olumuyiwa-tharp-appointed-director-africa-centre-784446

Warsan Shire Heads To Africa Writes Festival

The literary festival takes place in London on June 29- July 1

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IN HER first UK public appearance since her poetry reached millions of people in Beyonce’s visual album Lemonade, poet Warsan Shire will headline Africa Writes festival.

Taking place in London on June 29 to July 1, the UK’s biggest annual African literature festival will be held at The British Library and Rich Mix London.

Ahead of the publication of a new collection, Shire will close the festival on July 1 in conversation about her work, process and inspiration, as well as discussing living and working in LA, and her new projects that explore the intersections of art and healing.

Shire was awarded the inaugural Brunel International African Poetry Prize in 2013, and in 2014 was selected as Poet in Residence for Queensland, Australia, and appointed as the first Young Poet Laureate for London. She is the first person under 30 to headline Africa Writes festival.

Fellow poets Yomi Sode and Octavia Poetry Collective will perform at the Friday and Saturday headline events of the festival, which brings together over 50 of the most influ- ential voices in contemporary writing from Africa and its diaspora over an exciting literary weekend exploring themes of migration and identity, and celebrating the poetic form.

The Africa Writes programme of more than 20 events includes book launches of writers from across the continent and the diaspora, panel discussions, workshops and an international book fair.

Tickets are now available to book and the full festival programme will be announced at the end of May.

http://www.voice-online.co.uk/article/warsan-shire-heads-africa-writes-festival

Ben Okri’s keynote address to the Commonwealth People’s Forum 2018

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