Tag Archives: Carol Mitchell

Carib Lit Plus (Mid to Late March 2023)

A reminder that the process with these Carib Lit Plus Caribbean arts bulletins is to do a front and back half of the month, updating as time allows as new information comes in; so, come back, or, if looking for an earlier installment, use the search window. (in brackets, as much as I can remember, I’ll add a note re how I sourced the information – it is understood that this is the original sourcing and additional research would have been done by me to build the information shared here – credit and link back if you use).

Books and Other Reading Material

‘It’s important to point out that because I’m a shameless self-promoter who’s also fairly friendly that sometimes many people that I don’t know reach out to me because they like my work and offer to assist me with random things. (That’s tip number four — network, network, network) That’s also how I got funding for my very first audiobook, The Secrets of Catspraddle Village, an anthology of award-winning short stories. A Bookstafriend sent me a link about a seminar for an audiobook class which the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) was hosting. I signed up because I thought “eh, why not?”. What I thought would just be an informative seminar turned out to be an even bigger blessing. Every single person who attended was given studio time to help them record their audiobooks. (Shout out to the NCF for supporting Bajan culture, btw!) BUT please note that (a) I already had material written which was deemed good enough for my application to the writing retreat (b) Catspraddle Village was already compiled since I had planned to release the anthology this year. I say that to say this: (tip five) you don’t have to get ready if you stay ready. In both of those instances, I was (unknowingly) prepared.’ – Callie Browning guest post: Callie Browning has “done everything wrong” and That’s All Right: The Bajan Author on the Secrets to Her Success


I (Joanne C. Hillhouse) opened Twitter today to see my face …which was quite jarring as, though I had been interviewed by Jacqueline Bishop for Jamaica Observer’s #InConversation series in Sharon Leach’s Bookends column, that had been some months ago and I had not realized it was scheduled to be published this Sunday, March 26th 2023. I also had not realized, as I now do per a Facebook comment by Leach, that this is the last entry in the series (which is an annual series for Woman’s History Month). So, while I initially thought she meant last ever, it makes more sense that she means last for this year – in which case, I’ve never been so happy to bring up the rear.

I’ll track down the entire interview and post to Wadadli Pen’s Reading Room and Gallery 48 – where you can also find Bookends #InConversation with Trinidad and Tobago’s Barbara Jenkins – and the Media Page on my Jhohadli blog. (Source – Jacqueline Bishop on Twitter)


March 25th is the International Day of Remembrance of the victims of slavery and in particular the trans Atlantic slave trade. In memory, here are links to some past Wadadli Pen posts about chattel slavery in the Caribbean and Antigua and Barbuda in particular:

More People You should know – about Eliza Moore, who used the Emancipation act in the British West Indies and the fact that she was born in Antigua, part of the BWI, to secure her release from enslavement in St. Croix, which was still a slave state.

The Beginnings of Education for Black People in the British West Indies – Historical Notes (Antigua and Barbuda) – about how two free Black sisters, whose family were paradoxically slave owners and ameliorists (not abolitionists), and the free and enslaved Black people who built the country’s first school.

About Court or Klaas – about Antigua and Barbuda’s first national hero, leader of the failed 1736 rebellion who was subsequently broken on the wheel and his head hung on a pike at Otto’s pasture as a deterrant.

The Full has never been told – key dates between 1674 and 1835 and reference texts.

(Source – A. McKenzie on Twitter)


This post from A Writer’s Path and this recent posting on my Jhohadli blog both stress how pre-ordering can boost the success of forthcoming books. So let’s talk about some forthcoming books I’ve recently engaged or am involved with. Starting with Carol Mitchell’s debut novel What Start Bad A Morning. This is not Carol’s first book – in fact, she is a well-established independent author and publisher (including of two of my books). But this is her first full length adult contemporary novel with a traditional international press, Central Avenue Publishing. I read an advance review copy of What Start Bad A Morning for the purpose of blurbing and, as I do with books I like and/or have something to say about, I reviewed it for my Blogger on Books series.

The official publishing date is September 19th 2023 but it is already available for pre-order. Also available for pre-order is To be a Cheetah which, I’ve mentioned before is a collaboration with Antiguan and Barbudan artist Zavian Archibald.

This officially drops on July 4th 2023 – an easy date to remember right, especially as it’s with US publisher Sunbird Books. The third book I wanted to mention, meanwhile, is an abridged anthology of a previoiusly released (with US and UK publishers) anthology; the aa is with German publisher, Unrast. New Daughers of Africa, edited by Margaret Busby came out in 2019, 25 years after the similiarly seminal Daughters of Africa, aslo edited by Busby. Neue Töchter Afrikas – also edited by Busby who selected 30 of the 200 authors from the original anthology, including yours truly (my story “Evening Ritural”) for this German edition – officially launches June 20th 2023 in Cologne (wish I could be there) but it will be available for pre-order from April 25th 2023.

Pictured above, left to right, I am signing a copy of New Daughters at the Sharjah International Book Fair in 2019; that’s Margaret in the middle, a recent social media image, also with the book, and at right, the cover of the German translation. I’m excited about this because while it’s not the first time a creative work of mine has been translated, nor the first book in translation (see Perdida! Una Aventura en el Mar Caribe) but it is my first German translation and I am happy to see this amazing collection continue to penetrate new markets years after its release.

I’ll end by circling back to my fourth picture book, eighth book overall, To be a Cheetah. Best of Books bookstore will be hosting a launch in Antigua and Barbuda and I am looking forward to that. But to the theme of this entry, you can also pre-order from them if in Antigua and Barbuda, or even the Caribbean (I just signed copies of one of my books bought at Best of Books by someone placing the order from St. Kitts). Between this and all of the online options for purchasing, I do hope you will consider ordering now – it’s a small thing you can do for an author you love or a book you’re anticipating to help boost it in the marketplace. (Source – me)


The Wadadli Youth Pen Prize has worked to nurture and showcase the literary arts in Antigua and Barbuda since 2004, as a legal non-profit since 2021. From its inception, Wadadli Pen’s work has been voluntary, and, at this writing, it remains so. If you want to work with us (either as a volunteer or an intern – the latter ideal for college students seeking experience and mentorship), see this page for details. To contribute to the 2023 Wadadli Pen Challenge season, or to Wadadli Pen generally, see here.

(Source – in-house)


Antiguan artist and art teacher, Rhonda Williams, has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. She’s relocated to the US and needs assistance covering the costs for treatment. Here’s her go fund me. (Source – Intersect Antigua on Twitter)


“From helping found the Environmental Awareness Group and the Antigua Yacht Club, to her invaluable work with the national museum, the incredible legacy of Lisa Nicholson will continue to reverberate for many years to come.” (Daily Observer by Newsco)

Nicholson died March 20th 2023 at age 88. With her husband Desmond, she was not just active but pioneering in Antigua and Barbuda’s yachting sector – and its byproducts, such as Antigua Sailing Week and the Classic Yacht Regatta, research and restoration in their local English Harbour community and the island generally – including the works of the Dockyard and Museum, and environmental preservation – via the EAG.

“And she was an active member of many community organisations including the Expression Choir, Friends of Holberton Hospital, Sunnyside School, and the St Paul’s Crisis Intervention Group.” (Observer by Newsco)

The Expression Choir sang for the longtime community activist shortly before her death as she had done (as a member of the choir) for many others over the years. (Source – Daily Observer by Newsco)


Montserrat is mourning the loss of its literary lion Howard Fergus.

Fergus died on March 23rd. He wrote poetry and non-fiction primarily if not exclusively about Montserrat. His publications include Montserrat: History of a Caribbean Colony, Volcano Verses, The Arrow Poems and Sunday Soup, Obama and Other Poems, and Road from Long Ground: The Twilight Years. (Source – House of Nehesi Publishers on Twitter)


Our previous Carib Lit Plus shared the news of the passing of Dominican literary giant Alwyn Bully. We wanted to excerpt a couple of the tributes to enhance knowledge of his contribution to the arts. This one is from historian and writer also from Dominica Lennox Honeychurch (excerpt): “Alwin Bully was born in Roseau in on 23 November,1948 and was educated at the Convent Preparatory School, the Dominica Grammar School, the St. Mary’s Academy and the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill. He returned to teach at his old Alma Mater, eventually serving as its headmaster. During this time, he was deeply involved in promoting all aspects of the arts in Dominica including drama, painting, dance, folk traditions, creative writing and carnival. In 1965 he represented Dominica at the Commonwealth Arts Festival in Britain along with members of the Kairi and Dominica Dance troupes. In 1978, with the encouragement of then Minister of Education, H. L. Christian, he established the ‘cultural desk’ in the Ministry of Community Development which became the Cultural Division. In 1987 he left Dominica to work at the regional office of UNESCO in Jamaica, applying his creative skills to the wider Caribbean. Alwin Bully designed the national flag in early 1978 in preparation for the gaining of independence from Britain later that year and the Cabinet made certain small alterations to the original design. The flag was legally established by Act No. 18 of 1978, The National Emblems of Dominica Act, signed by the Governor, Sir Louis Cools-Lartigue on 31 October 1978, Gazetted 1 November 1978 and effective 3 November 1978.”

This one is from St. Lucian researcher and poet John Robert Lee (whose email blasts I reference often in this series): “Alwin was a close friend from our years at Cave Hill from 1969. We acted together and taught theatre workshops in many islands. He was one of those seminal figures of my youth who remained a formative influence. Our friends were the generation of artists, writers, theatre persons throughout the Caribbean with whom we formed lasting friendships. Both our own age group and older friends like Kamau Brathwaite, Derek Walcott, Rex Nettleford, Lorna Goodison and many others. We were children of those dynamic 70’s when so much was happening in our Caribbean in the arts and culture, popular music, politics, literature, ideas etc etc. He was the star, the leader among us. Now in our mid seventies, our generation is slowly but surely moving on….” (Source – JR Lee email)


Jennifer Rahim, an award winning Trinidadian and Tobagonian writer of poetry, fiction, and literary criticism, has died. She is the author of Mothers are Not the Only Linguists: and Other Poems for which she was named writer of the year by the Writers Union of Trinidad and Tobago (1992), Songster and Other Stories (2007), Casa de las Americas prize winning Approaching Sabbaths (2009), Redemption Rain: Poems (2011), Ground Level: Poems (2014), Bocas prize winning Curfew Chronicles: A Fiction (2017), and Sanctuaries of Invention (2021). Paper-Based Bookstore in tribute to her said, “Her backlist remains sought-after by students, critics, as well as everyday lovers of literature. She was a thoughtful & tremendously intelligent correspondent, whose updates on new writing we always looked forward to receiving. We recommend her bibliography without hesitation.” ETA: Jennifer has a book, Goodbye Bay, forthcoming July 2023 with Peepal Tree Press.

Book synopsis: It is 1963, one year after Independence, and Trinidadians are beginning to wonder what they can expect. But for Anna Bridgemohan, the year is one of crisis. Her mother has just died, bringing to the fore issues about Anna’s parentage, and she has broken up with her boyfriend. Since they both work at the central post office in Port of Spain, she decides to take up a temporary post in the small coastal village of Macaima, remote and declining cocoa country whose simpler rhythms, she thinks, will give her space and time to reflect, away from the pressures of the city and the intense political discussions at work. But neither space nor time is granted; the life of Macaima passes through the post office, and there is no way Anna can hold herself aloof from the stories that the villagers bring. Long before the year is up, Anna has been immersed in an intense seasoning in Macaima that will change her for ever. (Source – Paper-Based Books on Twitter)


The theme of this year’s US Virgin Islands Literary Festival & Book Fair, a virtual and in-person live event, set for April 13th – 16th 2023, is “Carrying: Recognition and Repair” – also the theme for volume 37 of The Caribbean Writer, currently being prepped for publication. The headliner will be Charmaine Wilkerson, New York Times bestselling author of Black Cake, with Augustown author Kei Miller, A Million Aunties author Alecia McKenzie, Now Lila Knows author Elizabeth Nunez, and Fear of Black Consciousness author Lewis Gordon among the supporting cast of writers. Planned workshops cover topics like “Using Virgin Islands History to Write Fiction” by Tiphanie Yanique, “Teaching Caribbean/Virgin Islands Literature in Virgin Islands Classroom” by Velma Pollard, writing plot, building character, weaving setting, writing about political controversy, writing poetry, and writing for children and publishing. The popular Book Bacchanal reception will be held at the Caribbean Museum Center for the Arts. The festival also has a Children’s Corner and among the authors in this genre expected to hang there, real or remotely, are Denene Milner, Tohira Durand, Michael Fleming. The Festival will also pay tribute to unsung Virgin Islanders like Valerie Combie, Vincent Cooper, and Joan Medlicott. Announcement of prizes for pieces published in The Caribbean Writer will be announced during the festival. For more information visit: http://www.usvilitfest.com or email usvilitfest@gmail.com (Source – JR Lee)


Soothe, a neo-soul-ish talent showcase and lime in Antigua and Barbuda was back to live events at Sugar Ridge on March 11th 2023 for the first time since the pandemic (a time during which they ran the online Sessions by Soothe series). The Resurgence, as it was called, included award winning pannist and Culture director Khan Cordice, soca queen Claudette Peters, among other singers – Arlen Seaton, Christian Ivy, etc., groups like the Serenade jazz ensemble, spoken word artist Kadeem Joseph, and singer Laikan (covered twice recently in CREATIVE SPACE), among others; a reported 16 performers. And Soothe (started in 2014 by Gemma Hazelwood and Taslim Gordon) with its line-up and stylized ambience delivered the vibes to its stylish audience.

Images from Soothe on Facebook. (Source – Daily Observer by Newsco)


St. Anthony’s Secondary School ‘Make It Art Fest’ competition and family fun day has been announced for April 1st 2023. Categories include painting, drawing, and face painting. (Source – Daily Observer by Newsco)


HAMA Films, the independent film company (producer Mitzi Allen, and co-producer/director husband Howard Allen) that brought Antigua and Barbuda it’s first full length feature film with The Sweetest Mango back in 2001 premiered its fifth film, Deep Blue first in Barbuda, March 11th, and on March 25th, in Antigua. There was an advanced screening in Montserrat late in 2022 during the Alliougana Festival of the Word.

Early reviews of the premiere event and the film itself on social media have been positive. Example, this one from Colin John Jenkins, prominent architect known for his commentary on various things including life in Antigua and films, “

Movie Review: Deep Blue

Last night was a really nice outing man. Familiar faces, both ladies and gents dressed up and such, and the venue was aptly set for the first showing of Deep Blue.

Without giving away too much, the plot focuses on the familiar story of development in a small island state, corruption, village politics, and environmental issues. Very timely, if I don’t say so myself.

It was really cool seeing people I know stepping up like this and the cinematography was enjoyable as the punch lines.

We do have great access to actors here and I hope the film industry and these kinda events continue to grow.

Maybe I might even do a 15-minute short film after this inspiration right here.

Kudos to everyone involved! I enjoyed it.

(Source – various on Facebook)


In Jamaica, there’s the ArtWalk Festival. What’s that? It’s a free public arts event, the last Sunday of the month, that showcases artistic and cultural talent (dancers, musicians, visual artists, poets, writers) in Jamaica. Partially funded by the Tourism Enhancement Fund, it is a Kingston Creative project started in 2018 and held in Downtown Kingston. March’s theme is Literature and Storytelling and poet and activist Stacey-ann Chin was the announced special guest for the March 24th meet-up and this is the March 26th festival line-up:

(Source – Twitter)


The Bocas Lit Fest will be back live for the first time since the pandemic April 28th to 30th 2023 in Trinidad and Tobago. Booked authors announced include authors who’ve dropped acclaimed texts in the intervening years including Celia Sorhaindo (Guabancex, 2020, and Radical Normalisation, 2022), Sharma Taylor (What a Mother’s Love don’t Teach You, 2022), Cherie Jones (How the One-Armed Sister sweeps Her House, 2021), Alake Pilgrim (Zo and The Forest of Secrets, 2022), and Ayamna Lloyd Banwo (When We were Birds, 2022) among others. See also the kids’ programme. (Source – N/A)


Jamaican writer Marcia Douglas has been announced as the 2023 winner of the Whiting Award for Fiction.

Read more about Marcia here. Here are all the current winners. (Source – Whiting Foundation on Twitter)


Recognising the winners of Priest Kailash of Antigua and Barbuda’s annual African Heritage/Black History essay competiion and the programme itself. Winners were announced during an awards ceremony at Cortsland Hotel and received laptops and tablets. These are 12-year-old Gloria Sampson, Raffael Davis, and Tezjah Smith. (Source – Daily Observer by Newsco)


Sandra Pouchet Paquet of Trinidad and Tobago is this year’s recipient of the Bocas Swanzy Award for distinguished service to Caribbean Letters: “in recognition of her pioneering contributions to the fields of academia, literature, and cultural studies.” The award is for editors, broadcasters, publishers, critics, and others working behind the scenes in service to Caribbean literature. Pouchet Paquet is remembered as a pioneering scholar in the field of Caribbean literary studies – “her book The Novels of George Lamming (Heinemann, 1980) remains a seminal text” – and many of us, Caribbean writers, also remember her Caribbean Writers Summer Institute out of the University of Miami in the early to mid-1990s. I (Joanne C. Hillhouse) attended in 1995, the programme’s penultimate year; it was my first international workshop and reading – and it was life changing. Credit to Pouchet Paquet, the programme’s director, for, as Bocas said, “shap(ing) the careers of a generation of authors”. Pouchet Paquet is also the founder of Anthurium: A Caribbean Studies Journal. She will receive her award on April 29th 2023. (Source – Bocas email)


Jamaican writer Colin Channer is one of Poets & Writers announced recipients of the 2023 Writers for Writers award. A committee made up of present and past members of the P & W board of directors made the decision. The committee’s chair, literary agent Eric Simonoff, commented: “We are thrilled to celebrate these three [Channer, Reyna Grande, and Celeste Ng] outstanding authors and one extraordinary editor [Jennifer Hershey], who have each shown a deep commitment to broadening the literary conversation. Through their dedication to writers and writing and their insistence on the importance of representation, they have enriched the publishing landscape immeasurably—to the benefit of us all.” The awards will be presented on March 27th 2023. Channer is best known for his fiery first novel Waiting in Vain and for being a co-founder of the Calabash International Literary Festival. (Source – Christian Campbell on Twitter)


Jamaican Ishion Hutchinson is to receive the Susannah Hunnewell Prize, which honors a writer for an outstanding piece of prose or poetry published by The Paris Review in the previous calendar year. The prize was established in 2023 in memory of Hunnewell, who worked with the magazine for over 30 years up to her three-year stint as editor, the role she held at the time of her death in 2019. Hutchinson is the prize’s first winner for an essay entitled “Women Sweeping”, published in the Spring 2022 issue (no. 239). (Source – JR Lee email)


One of if not the Caribbean’s most coveted literary prizes, OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature, has announced its 2023 long list. In poetry, the celebrated writers are Michael Fraser (The Day-Breakers), Anthony Joseph (Sonnets for Albert), and Pamela Mordecai (de book of Joseph); in fiction Marlon James (Moon Witch, Spider King), Ayanna Lloyd Banwo (When We were Birds), and Jasmine Sealy (The Island of Forgetting); and, in non-fiction, Ira Mathur (Love the Dark Days), Patricia Joan Saunders (Buyers Beward: Insurgency and Consumption in Caribbean Popular Culture), and Godfrey Smith (Diary of a Recovering Politician). Fraser is Canadian with Caribbean roots, Joseph and Banwo are UK-based Trinis, Mordecai a Canada-based Jamaican, James a US based Jamaican, Sealy a British born Barbadian Canadian, Mathur an Indian born Trinidadian, Saunders lives in the US (I am unsure of the specific island connection but she is part of the Caribbean diaspora) and Smith is a Belizean.

The winners of the genre and main prizes will be announced during the Bocas lit fest which returns to live for the first time during the pandemic, April 28th – 30th. This is the 13th year of the prize; past main prize winners are Derek Walcott (White Egrets), Earl Lovelace (Is Just a Movie), Monique Roffey (Archipelago), Robert Antoni (Like Flies to Watless Boys), Vladimir Lucien (Sounding Ground), Olive Senior (The Pain Tree), Kei Miller (Augustown), Jennifer Rahim (Curfew Chronicles), Kevin Adonis Browne (High Mas), Richard Georges (Epiphaneia), Canisia Lubrin (The Dyzgraphxst), Celeste Mohammed (Pleasantview). If you’re in to stats, that’s six writers from Trinidad and Tobago, three from St.Lucia, two from Jamaica, and one from the British Virgin Islands; and six books of fiction, four books of poetry, and two non-fiction books. (Source – JR Lee email)


Guadeloupean writer Maryse Condé, 89, is on the International Booker Prize long list. I mention her age as its been revealed that she is the oldest writer ever to make the list. Her longlisted book is The Book According to The New World, translated by her husband Richard Philcox. Per this article, “[they] are the first husband-and-wife team ever nominated for the prize. Condé, who has a degenerative neurological disorder that makes it difficult to see, dictated The Gospel According to the New World to Philcox, who then translated it into English.” Condé was previously shortlisted for the Man Booker prize in 2015. (Source – Facebook)


Grenadian filmmaker Teddy Frederick’s documentary film New Land: The Kalinago Dream has picked up awards at the Tokyo International Short Film Festival and the Rome International Movie Awards.

It has received honourable mention at the Munich New Wave Short Film Festival, and is an official selection at the Amsterdam International Awards, the Berlin Lift-Off Film Festival, and the Nouveaux Regards Film Festival. These selections place it in contention for more accolades. (Source – Daily Observer by Newsco)


The Derek Walcott Prize was awarded in 2022 to Saddiq Dzukogi’s Your Crib, My Qibla. The prize, named for St. Lucia’s late Nobel Laureate, is awarded in a partnership between Arrowsmith Press, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre, and Trinidad and Tobago’s Walcott Festival. (Source – JR Lee email)

Arts and Culture

Tropical Fete led off this year’s art and culture column series CREATIVE SPACE. It’s annual report, just in to my inbox,highlights its top three accomplishments of the past year as its cultural enrichment programmes in the areas of music and dance; the mas in Time’s Square and at the Brooklyn Public Library experiences; and providing college scholarships to two students. Twenty 23 goals include finding a location from which to operate 24 /7, game app development, and continued exploration of art and culture in relation to mental and physical health in a research setting. Read the full report.

(Source – Tropical Fete email)


Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority has announced a new festival: Antigua and Barbuda Art Week April 16 – 22. The line-up of activities notably omits literary arts despite the number of published books by Antiguans and Barbudans, and past community-organized literary art showcases like the Antigua and Barbudan International Literary Festival, Wadadli Stories Book Fair, and the Wadadli Pen organized Word Up!. That line-up, as published on visitantiguabarbuda.com, is a schools art competition just posted in Opportunities Too; an art week exhibition at the Boom at Gun Powder House and the V C Bird International Airport with artists like Heather Doram and Mark Brown and fashion designers like Argent and Nicoya Henry announced; art walks and studio tours (with stops at galleries like Zemis, Guava de Artist, Fig Tree, Edison Arts, the Hunts, Rhythm of Blue, Papa Zouk, Ana’s on the Beach, Copper and Lumber, Abracadabra, and Art Cafe in Barbuda); movies under the stars (not sure which movies are to be featured but the time and venue are April 19 and a place named “garrot blacks” – a name that perhaps needs some unpacking especially when you add its gorilla motif); an artist showcase on April 21st spotlighting performing artists in the musical and spoken word space (no names announced at the link); and on April 22nd, a sip and paint activity led by Gerron Farquharson at Greencastle Ranch. Here’s a posted promo video spotlighting Doram in her studio.

(Source – Daily Observer by Newsco.)


March 25th 2023 is the date for the previously reported Celeste Mohammed short story writing workshop. It is being held via zoom and costs US$100.

Get started here. (Source – Brooklyn Caribbean Literary Festival email)


The Caribbean Media Awards is open for submissions and will remain so until April 12th 2023. Details of the various categories, across various media platforms and topics, are listed and linked in the Opportunities Too database. The awards are being held this year in partnership with the Healthy Caribbean Coalition, with the addition of a category focussed on a healthy Caribbean. Per an emailed press release, “As the effort continues to promote healthy food policies, the region’s lead advocacy body in this area, the Healthy Caribbean Coalition (HCC) will be recognising print journalists who are covering this area, and doing so well.” The prize will include a trophy as well as a US$500 bursary for the award winner to produce additional material under the theme. Example of topics that would be a good fit for this theme include school food environments, healthy food fiscal policies, and efforts to strengthen regional food labelling. Entries must have been published between January 1st and December 31st 2023, and can be submitted through April 12th 2023. Again full award details here. (Source – personal inbox)

As with all content on wadadlipen.wordpress.com, except otherwise noted, this is written by Joanne C. Hillhouse (author of The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, Oh Gad!Musical Youth, With Grace, Lost! A Caribbean Sea Adventure, and The Jungle Outside). All Rights Reserved. Subscribe to the site to keep up with future updates. Thanks.

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Carib Lit Plus (Mid to Late January 2022)

A reminder that the process with these Carib Lit Plus Caribbean arts bulletins is to do a front and back half of the month, updating as time allows as new information comes in; so, come back, or, if looking for an earlier installment, use the search window. (in brackets, as much as I can remember, I’ll add a note re how I sourced the information – it is understood that this is the original sourcing and additional research would have been done by me to build the information shared here).


Eduardo Pyle, leader of the Antigua and Barbuda soca monarch band and longstanding member of the calypso monarch band in over two decades of involvement in culture and the arts, has died. “For Eduardo, what mattered most was the delivery of the most impeccable quality of the music during our annual summer festival,” said chairman of the festivals commission Maurice Merchant. (Source – Newsco’s Daily Observer)


The Brooklyn Caribbean Literary Festival’s menu of programmes includes a reading group, Unruly Islands: Uprising and Revolts, in collaboration with the the Center For Fiction. See their website for information on this and other programmes. (Source – BCLF email)


Antiguan and Barbudan writer and bookseller, and Wadadli Pen team member, Barbara Arrindell is one of the resource people for an upcoming seminar entitled ‘The Journey of a Book’. Click here to register. (Source – email)


I mentioned, in the late November 2021 Carib Lit Plus that the BCLF short story awards event was upcoming. Now here’s the video.

“Well, the thing is publishers respond to readers, to the market, and, so this is really a job for all of us. For the writers and the readers. And it’s a job for the readers to bring that attention because if the publishers see that there are readers for our work…it begins with us.” – Elizabeth Nunez, sharing this excerpt from the video, from the author for whom the BCLF short story prizes are named, to remind us all to #buyCaribbean #readCaribbean (Source – N/A)


We’ve mentioned Sea Turtles before but St. Kitts-Nevis writer Carol Mitchell has two other Big Cat books – Kay and Aiden’s The Tram Bell and The Stolen Trumpet. A graphic novel series based on the adventures of a pair of twins.

Illustrations are by London artist Alan Brown. Mitchell, in addition to being an author, is a publisher (Caribbean Reads Publishing). (Source – N/A)


Catching up on some late 2021 releases. Like this one from Antigua and Barbuda.

Written by former aerodome superintendant Growing with VCBIA: VC Bird International 1965-2008 is the story of Antigua and Barbuda’s former international airport “beginning with the first airplane of the historic Lindberg of Pan Am fame, which landed pretty close to what would become our present airport, this avid aviator carries us on a journey …Starting with the Americans who sought to establish air and sea bases throughout the region for World War II activities which were then converted to civil airport use controlled by local government….Throughout the book the theme of building and growing is emphasized.” (from a review by Makeda Mikael in the November 26th 2021 edition of the Daily Observer). This one was added to the Antigua and Barbuda Writings and Antigua and Barbuda Non-Fiction databases late last year. (Source – Newsco’s Daily Observer)


Belonging: Fate and Changing Realities is Herman Ouseley’s (Lord Ouseley’s) compelling account of his extraordinary life experiences. This vivid memoir describes how he coped with all challenges and, along the way, learnt how to develop methods to convince and persuade powerful people to use their influence to help eliminate the adverse effects of institutional discrimination, prejudice and bigotry. Over nearly six decades dedicated to public service, he became a ‘somebody’ at times, as he challenged the ‘great and the good’ in pursuit of equality and cohesion. He reflects upon contemporary Britain, knowing that there is still a struggle to achieve responsible and accountable leadership. The release date is listed as September 2021. Published by Hansib. (Source – Hansib email)


Get Up!: A Collection of Inspiring and Encouraging Commands is the latest book from relatively new Antiguan and Barbudan author Stancel C. Roberts who last year released An Island Girl’s Inspiration from Above. Both are motivational books. Roberts is a staff auditor with the government, and also, per her linkedin, a motivational speaker and lecturer at the Antigua State College. (Source – N/A)

Shout Outs

To Peepal Tree (producer) and Malika Booker (host) of New Caribbean Voices podcast. It’s been keeping me company this night in January with conversations with writers like Anton Nimblett and the several poets (Tanya Shirley, Ishion Hutchinson, Vladimir Lucien featured) featured in the rare poetry collection unearthing the experiences of British West Indians fighting in the first World War. I have written in CREATIVE SPACE about some of our experiences in World Wars 1 and 2 and think not nealry enough is known or understood about our role in these major battles (Hollywood white washes the Black and Brown people from their historical war films). But we were there.

Published in 2018, this book was a collaborative project, co-commissioned by 14-18 NOW, BBC Contains Strong Language, and the British Council.


To two Antigua-Barbuda sites of interest which are in the running for the top Caribbean attraction as voted by readers of USA Today (you can vote too, by the way). Normally we don’t do tourism-centric posts around here but the two named sites (Nelson’s Dockyard and Wallings Nature Reserve) have historical and/or cultural value and have been covered either on this blog or on my own Jhohadli blog. Specifically, CREATIVE SPACE #4 of 2019 – What’s happening at Wallings?, and Nelson’s Dockyard: On Becoming a World Heritage Site and CREATIVE SPACE #18 of 2021 – Clarence House and the Complicated Landscape of Our Colonial Past.

“Image 33: Nelson’s Dockyard 2” P. 55, The Art of Mali Olatunji: Painterly Photography from Antigua and Barbuda by Mali Olatunji and Paget Henry.


Ben Fox, founder at Shepherds.com who invited me to write a book recs post, subject of my choice. I used the opportunity to share some of my favourites from the CODE Burt Award for teen/young adult Caribbean literature. Click The Best Teen/YA Caribbean novels for readers everywhere to see which five I picked and why. (Also see what books I read – and reviewed – in 2021). (Source – Me)


One Caribbean book which made it on to the Women’s Prize 2022 favourite books read, broken down by year of publication, as chosen by their readers, is Monique Roffey’s The Mermaid of Black Conch. (Source – Women’s Prize email)


In addition to being a politician, Antigua and Barbuda’s Selvyn Walter was an art collector, writer (including popular column series like Not a Drum was heard and the book Bank Alley Tales), and founding member of the Grays Green based Halcyon Steel Orchestra which marked its 50th anniversary in 2021., and his creative pursuits are being recognized (posthumously) by the Sunshine Awards Organization. The US-based awards was founded in 1989 by Gilman Figaro Snr. Past awardees from Antigua and Barbuda are, in 1992, King Progress for best political commentary (Heaven Help Us), in 1999, female vocalist of the year Althea ‘Singing Althea’ Williams (Violence), in 2002, calypso monarch King Short Shirt named to the Hall of Fame, in 2003, soca artists Burning Flames (Children Call Een), in 2004, calypsonian Paul ‘King Obstinate’ Richards named to the Hall of Fame, in 2008, Rupert ‘King Swallow’ Philo, now deceased, named to the Hall of Fame in 2008 after winning best party calypso, best engineered recording, and best calypso in 1989 (Fire in the Backseat) and best social commentary in 1997 (CDC), in 2011, pannist Aubrey Lacua Samuel, in 2012, Dr. Prince Ramsey for music production and Rawdon Edwards for contribution to the performing arts, and, in 2015, Antigua State College principal Dr. Alister Francis (posthumously) for education. Other 2021 Sunshine Awardees are Barbados’ Ian Estwick, Nigeria’s Oluyinka Olutuye, Trinidad and Tobago’s Shakuntala Thilsted and Ainsworth Mohammed, St. Thomas’ Verne Hodge, and legendary Guadeloupean band Kassav. (Source – Newsco’s Daily Observer)


A Trinbagonian writer has landed on the UK Observer’s list ‘Introducing our 10 Best Debut Novelists of 2022‘. “The class of 2022 reminds us that the novel is a form without limits or rules,” the publication writes of the list that includes Ayanna Lloyd Banwo’s When We were Birds, forthcoming in February from Hamish Hamilton. She and her book are described as “an important new voice in fiction, at once grounded and mythic in its scope and carried by an incantatory prose style…When We Were Birds is both a love story and a ghost story – the tale of a down-on-his-luck gravedigger and a woman descended from corbeau, the black birds that fly east at sunset, taking with them the souls of the dead.” She describes the Bocas Lit Fest in Trinidad as a turning point in her writing, an awakening followed by the MA programme at University of East Anglia in the UK where she has lived for the last five years. (Source – Facebook)


The winners of the Caribbean Readers’ Awards 2021 have been announced. This is the second year of the Rebel Women Lit book club’s awards initiative; 500 votes were counted. Trinidad and Tobago’s Celeste Mohammed’s Pleasantview won best novel (adult); Jamaica’s poet laureate Olive Senior’s Pandemic Poems won best poetry collection; Curaçao’s Radna Fabias’ Habitus won best translation; Jamaica’s Kei Miller’s Things I have Withheld won best non-fiction book; and ‘Bomber and the Breadfruit Tree‘ was adjudged best RWL magazine piece. Congrats to all. (Source – RWL Facebook)


From Short Story to Novel Part 2 with Sharma Taylor is the first Bocas workshop of the year on January 29th 2022. Sharma’s first novel, What a Mother’s Love don’t Teach You, drops this year. She has been hugely successful as a short story writer winning the 2020 Wasafiri Queen Mary New Writing Prize, the 2020 Frank Collymore Literary Endowment Award, and the 2019 Johnson and Amoy Achong Caribbean Writers Prize; being twice shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and being a finalist for the 2020 Elizabeth Nunez Award for Writers in the Caribbean. Sharma will share her experience, tools and techniques in transferring the craft and technique of short-form fiction to a successful novel, building your career as an emerging writer. This seminar is suitable for writers who participated in Part 1 last year, as well as new participants.  Register here. (Source – Bocas email)


Consider this one an opportunity to pay it forward. April 29th 2022 is the deadline to recommend writers for the Royal Society of Literature’s International Writers Programme, which is supported by the Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society and the International Authors Forum. The RSL, founded in 1820, is the UK’s charity for the advancement of literature. Nominate writers for the International Writers Programme who are not resident in, nor citizens of, the United Kingdom, have published two outstanding works of literary merit (written or translated in to English). Twelve writers will be selected. Last year’s selectees were Don Mee Choi, Annie Ernaux, David Grossman, Jamaica Kincaid, Yan Lianke, Amin Maalouf, Alain Mabanckou, Javier Marías, Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, Claudia Rankine, Olga Tokarczuk and Dubravka Ugrešić. Make your nominations here. (Source – RSL email)


The Poetry Channel on You Tube has extended an invitation to poets worldwide to contribute to the channel run by Indran Amirthanayagam (email him at indranmx@gmail.com). He hosts contemporary poets reading their work and wishes to present an archive of essential poems and without any language limitation. So you might hear poems in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Tamil, Uzbek, Haitian Creole and Arabic. The channel also features an occasional series called Speaking With Poets, which already includes programs with Mervyn Taylor and Martin Espada. If you would like to be featured, send poetry videos (one poem per video) – you can record yourself and send or the host can set up a zoom meeting. Indran Amirthanayagam also edits The Beltway Poetry Quarterly with Associate Editor Sara Cahill Marron, and welcomes poetry submissions. (Source – JRLee email)


“I was nervous at first to do the exercises and to read my first draft out loud, but it was fun in the end.” – US based participant in the Jhohadli Writing Project, my (Wadadli Pen founder and coordinator, and author Joanne C. Hillhouse) workshops currently being offered online. This workshop series being offered once a month throughout 2022 is ideal for writers with works in progress. The identified participant said the January 2022 session helped, “Strengthened my pages.” Register on a month by month basis or for several months at a time. See Opportunities Too for Jhohadli Writing Project and Other Opportunities. (Source – Me)


Bocas, Trinidad and Tobago’s literary festival and related programmes, many of which have reach across the Caribbean, is under new management. Nicholas Laughlin replaces Marina Salandy-Brown as festival and programme director, while she steps in to the role of president of the board of directors. Laughlin, a poet, editor of the arts and travel magazine Caribbean Beat and co-director of the arts collective Alice Yard has been working alongside Salandy-Brown from the start, crafting the festival programme every year and leading the programming of the new virtual festivals since 2020.   Additionally, after a rigorous, multi-stage recruitment process, Jean-Claude Cournand is the new Chief Executive Officer. Cournand has been responsible for areas of Bocas Lit Fest youth programming since 2013 and through a partnership between Bocas and the 2Cents Movement, which he co-founded and managed, strategically helped to introduce the nation’s youth to spoken word and performance poetry. The huge popularity of the First Citizens National Poetry Slam is the culmination of their joint efforts. Read more here. (Source – JRLee email)


Issue 13 of Cacique magazine features Antiguan-Barbudan (by way of Dominica) designer Miranda Askie. Cacique is the inflight magazine of InterCaribbean Airways. The issue which also includes an interview with Barbados’ Cherise Harris (known around these parts as illustrator of my children’s book With Grace) and book recommendations by Caribbean Reads publisher and author Carol Mitchell. It can be read in full online. And remember, you can also read my Miranda Askie feature in this 2021 edition of CREATIVE SPACE. (Source – linkedin)


St. Lucian Poet John Robert Lee has posted an article on ways to revitalize and upgrade his country’s institutions and programmes to Jako Productions’ blog. Some interesting – and perhaps familiar – points. A Creative Arts Centre where cultural products are sold and which can also serve as an event space and restaurant, gallery, cafe, and artists meeting space. National gallery (Long overdue!) with retail space. Enhancement of library spaces and services. Supported and well maintained heritage spaces which can serve as cultural hubs. Strengthening of the government printery to produce cultural material. A vibrant performing arts space with creative arts training and certification opportunities. Needed as well, in addition to in-school instruction, is more public education (through traditional and social media channels) in the arts. There are, he points out, many practitioners who could be drawn on to serve as educators in their respective disciplines; it, and these other suggestions, just require a bit more initiative on the part of the powers that be. “The CDF needs to become more pro-active, more creative in their thinking, more truly supportive of the arts, and that across generations.” (Source – Jako Productions email)

As with all content on wadadlipen.wordpress.com, except otherwise noted, this is written by Joanne C. Hillhouse (author of The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, Musical Youth, With Grace, Lost! A Caribbean Sea Adventure, The Jungle Outside, and Oh Gad!). All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed it, check out my page on Amazon, WordPress, and/or Facebook, and help spread the word about Wadadli Pen and my books. You can also subscribe to the site to keep up with future updates. Thanks.

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Caribbean Writers Online

Links to artiste/writer pages (websites and/or blogs) from the Caribbean region – artistes listed here are either Caribbean born or Caribbean descended (in the latter case, they are listed under their country of lineage). I’ve opted to list per country of birth or origin, though the writer may have grown up elsewhere or claim multiple countries. If I am unsure of their country-designation I will list as N/A until corrected. Countries are listed alphabetically.

Please note, this page is a work in progress – links will be added over time – if you have a link you would like added, email wadadlipen@gmail.com for consideration – if linked or if sharing this post, please link back.

This page does not link Antiguan and Barbudan writers, click link immediately below the picture for us.


From left, Antiguan and Barbudan writers S E James, Joanne C. Hillhouse, Brenda Lee Browne, AJ, Marie Elena John w/Kittitian author Caryl Phillips at the Calabash literary festival in Jamaica (2007).

 Antiguan and Barbudan Writers on the Web

& now Caribbean Writers Online:

group photo

This image is from a fiction editing workshop in Guyana and participants included some of the writers listed on this page – Joanne C. Hillhouse, first left back is listed among the Antiguan and Barbudan Writers on the Web; and below Shivaneee Ramlochan (Trinidad and Tobago), second from left, front; Richard Georges (BVI), second from left, back; Nailah Imoja (Barbados), third from left, front; Ruel Johnson (Guyana), third from right, back; Felene Cayetano (Belize), front, right. (2016)


Shakirah Bourne


Shakirah Bourne, left, during a Commonwealth Writers workshop, 2018, in Barbados, with Joanne C. Hillhouse, and not quite out of frame Sharma Taylor.

Callie Browning

Babara Ann Chase

Nailah Imoja

Karen Lord


Karen Lord, right, during the Commonwealth Writers workshop, in Barbados in 2018, in which she served as co-faciliator. She is pictured in a 1-on-1 with Bahamian writer Alexia Tolas.

Sandra Sealey

Edison T. Williams


Felene Cayetano

Ivory Kelly


Yesha Townsend

the British Virgin Islands

Richard Georges


Richard Georges, centre, in conversation with other Caribbean Writers during an editing workshop in Guyana. Also pictured are Antiguan and Barbudan writer Joanne C. Hillhouse, Bermudan writer Kim Dismont-Robinson, and from Commonwealth Writers Rukhsana Yasmin.

Eugenia O’Neal


Celia Sorhaindo

the Dominican Republic

Junot Diaz


Tobias Buckell

Oonya Kempadoo 


Imam Baksh

Maggie Harris

Ruel Johnson


Ruel Johnson, second from left, in Guyana with Joanne C. Hillhouse, left, Jane King Hippolyte, Kim Dismont-Robinson, and in the back row, from left, Richard Georges, Tanya Batson-Savage, and Nailah Imoja; 2016.

Kaie Kellough

Yolanda T. Marshall


Raymond Antrobus

Tanya Batson-Savage

Jacqueline Bishop

Amina Blackwood-Meeks

Diane Browne

Hazel Campbell

Colin Channer


Joanne C. Hillhouse with Colin Channer, 2007, at the Calabash International Literary Festival.

Carolyn Cooper


Caribbean writers from left: Jamaica’s Carolyn Cooper, Trinidad’s Danielle Boodoo-Fortune, Bermuda’s Angela Barry, Barbados’ Dana Gilkes, Barbados’ Esther Phillips, Trinidad’s Ramabai Espinet, Caribbean literary giant George Lamming, Antigua’s Joanne C. Hillhouse, Trinidad’s Patricia Mohammad, Barbados’ Margaret Gill, and Curdella Forbes of Jamaica. 2008 at the BIM seminar Celebrating Caribbean Women Writers.

Kwame Dawes

Jonathan Escoffery

Yashika Graham

Diana McCaulay & Diana McCaulay on YouTube

Alecia McKenzie

Kei Miller

Opal Palmer Adisa


At the VI Lit Fest, Opal Palmer Adisa front, with, Jamaica Kincaid and Joanne C. Hillhouse, 2015.

Annie Paul

Geoffrey Philp

with Geoffrey Philp

Geoffrey Philp with Joanne C. Hillhouse at the 2018 Miami Book Fair.

Leone Ross

Caribbean Writers Congress with Marin Bethel and Leone Ross 2013

Leone Ross, right, at the Association of Caribbean Writers in Guadeloupe with Joanne C. Hillhouse and Bahamas’ Marion Bethel, centre.

Olive Senior

(she gets two pictures)

caribbean-fiction-writers-summer-institute 1995

This one is from 1995 in Miami at the Caribbean Fiction Writers Summer Institute. Pictured are participants in the fiction workshop led by Olive Senior, seated centre, including, standing centre, Joanne C. Hillhouse, and to her right, Ifeona Fulani, Donna Aza Weir-Soley, and Dalma Llanos, to her left Joanne Hippolyte, Sarah Pemberton Strong, and others.


Olive Senior with Joanne C. Hillhouse, 2019.

Safiya Sinclair

Renaee Smith

Helen Williams


Yvonne Weekes


Kelly Baker Josephs

Puerto Rico

Lisa Paravisini-Gebert

Viviana Prado-Nuñez

Ivette Romero-Cesareo

St. Kitts & Nevis

Carol Mitchell

Carol Mitchell 4 by Joanne C Hillhouse

Carol Mitchell is pictured here as a guest presenter at Joanne C. Hillhouse’s Jhohadli Summer Youth Project writing camp in Antigua, 2013.

Caryl Phillips

St. Lucia

John Robert Lee

lee, lamming, esther phillips - bdos, july 26 2008 BIM Symposium

John Robert Lee, left, with George Lamming and Esther Phillips at a BIM literary event in 2008.

Eleanor Shearer

Derek Walcott

St. Vincent & the Grenadines

Philip Nanton


Rihana Jamaludin

Karin Lachmising

Trinidad and Tobago

Lisa Allen-Agostini

Lauren K. Alleyne

Desiree C. Bailey

Vashti Bowlah

Danielle Boodoo Fortune (see also this link to her various past blogs)


Danielle Boodoo-Fortune is second from right, next to Curdella Forbes, right, and Joanne C. Hillhouse, centre, pictured with Caribbean writers Ramabai Espinet and Angela Barry, left and second from left at the BIM event in 2008.

Summer Edward

Marsha Gomes-McKie

Joanne Gail Johnson

Nicholas Laughlin

Sharon Millar

Celeste Mohammed

Paula Obe

N. G. Peltier

Ingrid Persaud

M. Nourbese Philip

Shivanee Ramlochan

Leshanta Roop

Lawrence Scott

Liane Spicer

U. S. V. I.

Tiphanie Yanique

VI Lit Fest panel

2015 at a panel at the VI lit fest, Tiphanie Yanique, with mic, and Sharon Millar, left, and right Gillian Royes and Joanne C. Hillhouse.

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Filed under A & B Lit News Plus, A & B WRITINGS, Caribbean Plus Lit News, Links We Love, Literary Gallery

WHO WON IN 2013?



*see all shortlisted writers here.

*re prize split – please note that each shortlisted writer receives a Certificate of Achievement as well as discount cards from the Best of Books; and the overall winner’s name has been emblazoned alongside the name of past winners onto the Challenge plaque – sponsored by the Best of Books.



Primary School – St. John’s Catholic Primary – US$500 worth of books sponsored by Hands Across the Sea

Secondary School – Antigua Girls High School – US$500 worth of books sponsored by Hands Across the Seatop


Author of Revelations Tonight and Remembrance
Overall Winner (Revelations Tonight), Winner in the 13 to 17 age category (Revelations Tonight) and Third placed in the 13 to 17 age category (Remembrance)

Total prizes:


$500 sponsored by Conrad Luke of R. K. Luke and Sons and the Leonard Tim Hector Memorial Committee

Literary Opportunities

Sponsored spot – Just Write writers retreat courtesy Brenda Lee Browne


So the Nailhead Bend So the Story End: An Anthology of Antiguan and Barbudan Writing by Althea Prince

Oh Gad coverOh Gad! by Joanne C. Hillhouse

LiTTscapes: Landscapes of Fiction from Trinidad and Tobago by Kris Rampersad

Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg and other gifts courtesy the Best of Books

Send out you handSend out you Hand by Dorbrene O’Marde

The Caribbean Writer Volume 26 & the Antigua and Barbuda Review of Books – women’s edition contributed by Joanne C. Hillhouse

Huracan by Diana McCaulay

Island Princess in Brooklyn by Diane Browne

The Legend of Bat’s Cave and Other Stories by Barbara Arrindell

And more

Original one of a kind journal created by Jane Seagull

Pen sponsored by Pam Arthurton of Carib World Travel and the Antigua and Barbuda International Literary Festival

Two tickets on board Barbuda Express

Gift bag from Raw Island Products

Gift courtesy Joanne C. Hillhouse  top


Author of Ceramic Blues and Julie Drops
Second placed Overall (Ceramic Blues), Winner (Ceramic Blues) and Second Placed (Julie Drops) in the 18 to 35 age category

Total prizes:


$200 (patron prefers to remain anonymous)

Literary Opportunities

Sponsored spot – Just Write writers retreat courtesy Brenda Lee Browne


Unburnable by Marie Elena JohnunburnableHIRESresized

So the Nailhead Bend So the Story End: An Anthology of Antiguan and Barbudan Writing by Althea Prince

Dog-Heart by Diana McCaulay

Althea Prince’s In the Black: New African Canadian Literature (contributed by Joanne C. Hillhouse)

Send out you Hand by Dorbrene O’Marde

Tides that Bind and the Road to Wadi Halfa by Claudia Elizabeth Ruth Francis

Sweet Lady by Elaine Spires

Book gift courtesy Silver Lining supermarket

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

And more

2 tickets on board Barbuda Express

Lunch for two at Keyonna Beach

Lunch for two – Bayhouse Restaurant @ Tradewinds Hotel

Gifts courtesy Joanne C. Hillhouse  top


Author of The Big Event
Third placed overall and first placed in the 12 and younger age category

Total prizes:


So the Nailhead Bend So the Story End: An Anthology of Antiguan and Barbudan Writing by Althea Prince

The Legend of Bat’s Cave and Other Stories by Barbara Arrindell

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

And more

$200 Gift certificate – Stephen B. Shoul

2 tickets on board Barbuda Express

Gift courtesy Joanne C. Hillhouse top


Author of Her Blackest Sin
Third placed in the 18 to 35 age category

Total prizes:


Send out you Hand by Dorbrene O’Marde

So the Nailhead Bend So the Story End: An Anthology of Antiguan and Barbudan Writing

Tides that Bind and the Road to Wadi Halfa by Claudia Elizabeth Ruth Francis

And More

Gift certificate for Latte, Capuccino or Coffee – Heavenly Java 2 Go.top


Author of Secret of de Mango Tree
Second placed in the 13 to 17 age category

Total prizes:


Island Princess in Brooklyn by Diane Browne

Pink Teacups and Blue Dresses by Floree WilliamsFloree Williams bookcover

So the Nailhead Bend So the Story End: An Anthology of Antiguan and Barbudan Writing by Althea Prince

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

And More

$50 book gift certificate – Cushion Club top


Author of Hide and Seek
Second placed in the 12 and younger age category

Total Prizes:


Caribbean Adventure Series – three pack by Carol Mitchell

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books top


Author of How Tigers Got Stripes
Third placed in the 12 and younger age category

Total prizes:


The Legend of Bat’s Cave and other stories by Barbara Arrindell

Caribbean Adventure Series – three pack by Carol Mitchell

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books top


Winner in the junior section of 2013 Wadadli Pen Art Challenge

Total Prizes:

Seascapes by Carol Mitchell

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

Gift courtesy Jane Seagull

Gifts courtesy Art at the Ridge top



Second placed in the junior section of the 2013 Wadadli Pen Art Challenge

Total Prizes:

Antigua My Antigua by Barbara Arrindell

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

Gifts courtesy Art at the Ridge top



Third placed in the junior section of the 2013 Wadadli Pen Art Challenge

Total Prizes:

Antigua My Antigua by Barbara Arrindell

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

Gifts courtesy Art at the Ridge top


MissWinner in the young adult section of the 2013 Wadadli Pen Art Challenge

Total Prizes:

Gifts courtesy the Best of Books

Gift courtesy Art at the Ridge

Cash gift courtesy Koren Norton and anonymous donor

That he may have the opportunity to collaborate with writer Barbara Arrindell on her next children’s picture book is something we can all look forward to top

Special thanks as well to all the 2013 partners: Barbara Arrindell and the Best of Books, Floree Williams, Devra Thomas, Linisa George, and Brenda Lee Browne. Thanks as well to our media partners who help get the word out, especially Antigua Nice and 365 Antigua who for several years and ongoing have hosted pages for Wadadli Pen on their very busy hubs.

joanne26I am Joanne C. Hillhouse. I am first and foremost a writer (author of The Boy from Willlow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, Oh Gad! and contributor to other anthologies and journals) who could’ve benefited from this kind of encouragement back in the day. That’s why I do this. Congratulations to all the winners, and remember this is not just a contest; this is our attempt to nurture and showcase Antiguan and Barbudan literary talent. We’ve taken the time over the years to provide feedback to the winning writers, conduct writing workshops including online workshops right here on this site, visit schools, and other activities (such as this site) designed to help young writers hone their skills. As we showcase your best efforts here on https://wadadlipen.wordpress.com we encourage you to keep writing and to remain open to the opportunities to become a better writer.


Filed under A & B Lit News Plus, A & B WRITINGS, Literary Gallery, Wadadli Pen 2013, Wadadli Pen News

Reading Room and Gallery

UPDATE! The Gallery is now closed. Continue reading at Reading Room and Gallery II, Reading Room and Gallery III, and Reading Room and Gallery IV.

DISCLAIMER: By definition, you’ll be linking to third party sites from these Links-We-Love pages. Linked sites are not, however, reviewed or controlled by Wadadli Pen (the blog, the Wadadli Youth Pen Prize nor coordinator/blogger Joanne C. Hillhouse); and Wadadli Pen (the blog, the Wadadli Youth Pen Prize and coordinator/blogger Joanne C. Hillhouse) disclaims any responsibility or liability relating to any linked sites and does not assume any responsibility for their contents. In other words, enter at your own risk.

Here you’ll find stories, interviews, reviews, poems; you name it…a totally subjective showcase of (mostly) Caribbean written (sometimes visual and audio visual) pieces that I (Joanne) have either personally appreciated or which have been recommended (and approved) for posting/linking. If you’re looking for the winning Wadadli Pen stories (and I hope you are!), click on ‘Categories’ and go to the respective year for ‘2004 Winners’, ‘2005 Winners’, ‘2006 Winners’, ‘2010 Winners’, 2011 winners… You can also see the Best of Wadadli Pen special issue at Anansesem which has the added feature of audio dramatizations of some of the stories.


http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2011/02/over-hawkins-hill/ – hard to believe this writer is only 13; some interesting insights and beautifully rendered language here.

http://afrobeatjournal.org/en/Issue_2_Spring_2011/1/129/Debris-Poetry-Jamaica-Marcia-Douglas.htm – From Afro Beat Journal, Debris by Marcia Douglas, a British born, Jamaican writer, who reportedly teaches in the US. We are a migratory people, aren’t we; kind of like the juice bag she writes about that still floats somewhere in the sea.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2011/08/the-magic-mirror-tempts-lilys-white-daughter-1951 – a literary mash-up of Snow White and racial politics. Very interesting.

http://www.anansesem.com/2011/10/earths-water.html – imagery, personification…nature comes alive in this one by Summer Edward.

http://www.nyu.edu/calabash/vol5no1/0501042.pdf – literary shout outs aplenty suffuse this lively poem (When I Die by Ann-Margaret Lim).

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/poem/179809 – A little hip action: Hip-Hop Ghazal by Patricia Smith.

http://www.online-literature.com/frost/748 – Nothing Gold Can Stay; love love this poem…and can relate to/understand it better now as a 30 something than I did when I first heard Pony Boy say it in one of my fav movies a a kid The Outsiders …years later I actually visited Frost Farm (Aside: visited Little Women  author Louisa May Alcott house that summer, too :-)) – Summer ’08, walked a good road that summer, which calls to mind another Frost favourite, The Road Not Taken.

http://oldpoetry.com/opoem/7126-William-Shakespeare-Sonnet-116—Let-me-not-to-the-marriage-of-true-minds— a favourite from the English bard, Shakespeare.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqOqo50LSZ0&feature=related – Maya. Enough said.

http://www.bartleby.com/126/52.html – ‘When I have fears that I may cease to be’ by another personal favourite John Keats.

http://ananseseminfo.blogspot.com/2010/12/sugarcane-dance.html – I just love how this feels. Summer Edward’s Sugar Cane Dance at Anansesem, a site for Caribbean children’s literature.

http://www.nyu.edu/calabash/vol4no2/0402115.pdf – Mervyn Morris (my writing mentor during my UWI days) says so much with such few words in this endearing piece.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/04/liberian-curfew/ – This poem set in war torn Liberia and written by Antiguan, Althea Romeo-Mark has been described as “powerful”, “touching”, and “strong”.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/12/chameleon-thoughts – Danielle Boodoo Fortune is a relatively new discovery (first heard her read in 2008) who’s quickly become an old favourite. Here’s an example of why. Here’s another example: Evening in the Room Built from Words.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2009/03/the-joy-of-planting-banana-suckers-in-your-own-land – The Joy of Planting Suckers in Your Own Land; of the compulsion to grow things (a plantain, a child, a nation, an idea…)

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/06/1-o-clock-mass  – ‘1 o’clock mass’ – the line that jumps out at me from this “do nations unite or do they divide”.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/08/sip-an-talk – a related piece (borders, immigration and themes of that nature) by Angelique Nixon.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/06/what-you-cryin-for -The causes and symptoms of crime take centre stage in this piece ‘What you Crying for?’ by Anku Sa Ra, well complemented by the Stevie Burrows image entitled, appropriately, ‘Crime’. Tongues of the Ocean is a multi-media site and this is one of the postings that have, in addition to the written, an aural presentation of the work.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2009/11/wheelbarrow-woman – Readers describe this Lynn Sweeting poem which challenges readers to “love up your own self fearlessly” as “refreshing and candid”.

http://www.nyu.edu/calabash/vol4no2/0402128.pdf – Delores Gauntlett’s Pocomania appeared in Volume 4 Number 2 in the Spring 2007 issue of Calabash.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/03/marassa-jumeaux/ – Geoffery Philp’s perspective on Haiti had an interesting “angle” on things. And for those who think Anansi is always up to no good for no good reason, check out his ‘Anancy Song’ here

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/current/ – This leads to Xan-Xi Bethel’s ‘Sister, Love’, a poignant piece on Haiti, complemented by Lindsay Braynan’s touching image ‘Help a Sistah Out, Man’.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/07/walcott-in-nassau – Walcott in Nassau; very effective analogy.

http://www.kipling.org.uk/poems_if.htm – If.

http://oldpoetry.com/opoem/show/119806-Edna-St–Vincent-Millay-To-A-Friend-Estranged-From-Me – Actually discovered this as a teen in my much-dog-eared (translation: much loved) copy of Stephanie Tolan’s The Last of Eden. Love the imagery in the first verse, especially and the sense of loss and longing it evokes.

http://imani.wordpress.com/2007/05/13/for-my-mother-may-i-inherit-half-her-strength/ & http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tfl/corporate/projectsandschemes/artmusicdesign/poems/poem.asp?ID=161 – two faves by Jamaica’s Lorna Goodison

http://sheeralmshouse.blogspot.com/2010/07/no-more-smalling-up-of-me.html – ‘No More Smalling up of Me’ by Jean Wilson


If you’ve been to the Blogger on Books recently, you may remember my mini-review of American writer Will Allison’s What You Have Left. Here’s an excerpt from that very book. ALSO, you’ll remember me raving about Nigerian Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s The Thing Around Your Neck; I just came across one of my favourite stories from the book. So, read.

http://www.munyori.com/novioletbulawayo.html – a story by Zimbabwe-American writer Noviolet Bulawayo.

http://dloc.com/AA00000079/00009/19j – Pamela Mordecai’s Cold Comfort is all kinds of funny.

http://ananseseminfo.blogspot.com/2011/05/sun-moon-darkness-rain-and-heart.html – A Caribbean folk tale from Anansesem.

http://ananseseminfo.blogspot.com/2010/12/beaumont-and-moonflower.html – A children’s story; perhaps a bit of inspiration given Wadadli Pen’s 2011 theme.

http://visitstsomewhere.blogspot.com/ – The St. Somewhere Journal features new writings from across the Caribbean. Among your blogger’s faves in the Autumn 2010 issue are Kittian writer Carol Mitchell’s ‘Kept Promises’ on Page 4 and Trinidadian Shakira Bourne’s ‘Crossing Over’ on Page 6. While you’re there, check out my story ‘Somebody!’ on Page 30 and my essay ‘On Writing’ on Page 37.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2009/10/the-rain/ – This “delightful but dark” Christi Cartwright story was hailed by readers for its “vivid imagery”.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/03/landscape-without-horizon/ – “Brilliant”, “vivid”, “beautiful” are a few of the words that have been used to describe this short story by Bahamaian, Sonia Farmer.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/05/when-coffee-time-come/ – Randall Baker’s ‘When Coffee Time Comes’ was credited for its “great characterization”.

http://ananseseminfo.blogspot.com/2010/12/yohan.html – Check out this imaginative children’s piece by Antiguan author Floree Williams.

http://www.munyori.com/miriamshumba.html – Straight out of Africa and yet familiar to all.


This Jamaican children’s author asks ‘who are we writing for?’

I remember watching a group of kids at the national Youth Rally recently (Nov. 2011) chat and walk about during the Antigua and Barbuda National Anthem remembering how we couldn’t even twitch to scratch our nose singing the anthem every morning on the grounds of Holy Family School. How times have changed. It’s for this reason that I found the article ‘Tales out of School: Singing the National Anthem Word Perfect’ by Mary Quinn   to be at once sobering and amusing.

I’ll be the first to admit, I have my reservations about self-published material; while I appreciate the frustrations of the traditional route, and the desire to bypass them (been there, done that), there’s a part of me that believes the hurdles help ensure that what’s turned out is the best it can be – in terms of physical quality of the product and the quality of the content (stumbling over basic grammatical errors, plot gaps, character inconsistencies or other things that should have been caught and refined in editing takes away from the reading experience). That said, I’ve read poor material from the traditional route and really good self-published works (usually where the writer exercises the patience and good sense to invest in editing). So, with self-publishing more accessible than ever, as you consider the best route for your literary baby, I’m happy to share this article balancing both arguments while ultimately making a pro self-publishing case (in specific instances). Incidentally, the site is the online home of Bahamian writer Nicolette Bethel where there are other interesting postings on a range of topics.


This is just one of the interesting points made in Susan Lowes’ article on Social Relations in Antigua in the 1940s: “In fact, it was by traversing this terrain that young people often came to know their “class.” Thus a young man would suddenly find that he was not allowed inside the gate of a close school friend, and realize that he was socially unacceptable to his friend’s parents. Or men who were good friends nevertheless did not visit each other inside their houses; those who reported that they were “very close” often got no further than the veranda. Women, as keepers of the indoors, controlled the most intimate types of socialization, ranging from house visits to marriage. Men, in contrast, socialized outdoors, on the streets and playing fields, in rum shops and clubs, arenas where they were less constrained by indoor standards of respectability. It was by and large the women who policed the distinctions of social class: who knew, and cared about, the genealogies, who determined who their children could socialize with inside the house and who had to remain an “outdoors” friend, and so on.”


http://www.ted.com/talks/chimamanda_adichie_the_danger_of_a_single_story.html – This is not a written piece but rather a piece on the power of writing and the danger of a single story. It’s one of the more circulated TED talks on the net, featuring Nigerian writer Chimamanda Adichie, author of Purple Hibiscus, Half of a Yellow Sun, and The Thing Around her Neck – which I read and reviewed in the Blogger on Books. On the strength of the latter book and the TED talk – which I can relate to so much as a girl from the Caribbean – she’s a new favourite of mine.

http://www.thereviewreview.net/publishing-tips/what-editors-want-must-read-writers-submitti – Submitting to literary journals? Read this first.

http://accordingtohoyt.com/2011/08/30/you-say-editing-i-say-proofreading – The importance of editing.

http://www.shewrites.com/profiles/blogs/the-criticism-that-changed-my – It may not feel like it at the time but constructive criticism helps us grow as writers.

http://ananseseminfo.blogspot.com/2011/05/writing-up-storm.html – tips for unlocking the literary imagination among students.

http://www.guidetoliteraryagents.com/blog/7+Things+Ive+Learned+So+Far+By+Danica+Davidson.aspx – What aspiring writers need to know.

http://www.365antigua.com/cms/content/news-community-marcella-andre-commentary-haiti-march-27-2011 – I can FEEL Haiti in this piece.

http://summeredward.blogspot.com/2010/06/caribbean-picture-books-importance-of.html – Interesting piece on illustrations for Caribbean children’s literature; perhaps particularly interesting to me given that it ties in with our effort in 2011 to generate art to support the Caribbean children’s literature themed word entries for Wadadli Pen.

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/harriet/2007/03/poetry-terrors/ – On the writer and the blank page (by Kwame Dawes)

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/02/me-writing/ – On writing (by Trinidadian Paul Hadden).

http://www.candw.ag/~jardinea/ffhtm/ff971219.htm – The late Tim Hector putting into perspective the writing and life of (one of my favourites) the late Martin Carter.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/waves-and-murmurs/senior-lecture/ – Olive Senior, former winner of the Commonwealth Writers Prize, was actually my workshop leader when I attended the Caribbean Fiction Writers Summer Institute at the University of Miami back in 1995. Here she speaks at the Bahamas Writers Summer Institute in 2010 on ‘Writing and the Politics of Imagination in Small Spaces’. It’s a lengthy but interesting read.


An interview with the always outspoken Dr. Carolyn Cooper, whom I personally remember as one of my favourite professors at the University of the West Indies.

“I find that in order to write your characters well, you have to be a little bit in love with them, even the ones that aren’t lovable at all.” – from Nalo Hopkinson’s 5 Minute Interview on Date with a Book.

“There was an idea I wouldn’t have been able to conceive of [the narrator] Precious’s life unless I had lived it,” said Push writer Sapphire. Push, some of you may know is the book that birthed the academy award winning film, Precious. Read her full comments on fact/fiction and assumptions/labelling here. This struck me because I’ve actually gotten a lot of the same assumptions (or questions) about my books – The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight – that the stories were biographical when they are in fact fiction (and no more biographical than any other work of fiction, in fact less so I’d say). Never thought of it as racism though since most of the questioning came from my own community. Hm.

The Farming of Bones remains my favourite book by Edwidge Dandicat, one of my favourite contemporary writers. In this interview, she talks about the book (good reading).

This interview with Tiphanie Yanique is quite engaging and revealing, plus how many of us can say Maya Angelou read a poem of ours while we were still in high school.

http://maudnewton.com/blog/?p=9295 – as I post this, I haven’t yet read Marlon James’ books (though they’ve been recommended to me time and again, especially Book of Night Women) but I found this interview quite interesting. My favourite line comes in the section where he talks of his struggles writing a love scene: Someone once scared me by saying that love isn’t saying “I love you” but calling to say “did you eat?” (And then proceeded to ask me this for the next 6 months).    All that and he’s a Buffy fan; I think I’m going to have to book mark his blog (http://marlon-james.blogspot.com/index.html) and get to reading those books.

http://antiguaspeaks.com/news/?p=204 – Linisa George’s Brown Girl in the Ring – inspired by the children’s nursery rhyme and her experiences as a dark skinned sister growing up in a shade conscious society – is a staple of not only her When A Woman Moans productions but the local (i.e. Antiguan and Barbudan) performance poetry scene. In this article, she discusses the piece with her sister-friend and collaborator, ZIA.

http://sheroxlox.tumblr.com/post/1640248532/she-rox-tameka-jarvis-george– “Write from your heart. Write about your experiences good or bad. Everything in your life happens for a reason, so let those moments big or small be your inspiration to teach or help other people.” – excerpt from interview with Antiguan author of 2010 release Unexpected. Follow the link to read the rest.

http://www.nyu.edu/calabash/vol5no1/0501104.pdf – One of the interesting aspects of this Opal Palmer Adisa interview featured in Calabash was her insights on the Caribbean aesthetic.


http://afrolicious.com/2011/08/16/the-missing-peace-is-beautiful – This is a short film, The Missing Peace, by Rachel Benjamin; it’s based on a story by Haitian-American writer Edwidge Dandicat.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ymvk3HsocqQ – Motion in motion.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-DWLzbPmcQ – She Rox Lox – Zahra Airall’s rendering of locked women who are just beautiful.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/06/crime – This Steven Burrows piece calls to mind for me the Bob Marley song ‘Johnny Was’: “woman hold her head and cry, ’cause her son has been shot down in the street and die”…a commentary on the unsettling state of affairs on our streets and in our homes.

http://wn.com/UNICEF_oneminutesjr__Dear_Dad – This is a winning piece in a UNICEF competition by Antiguan Carlon Knight; it’s entitled ‘Dear Dad’ and is quite touching.

http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2010/06/help-a-sistah-out-man – This was posted on Tongues of the Ocean, the Bahamian-Caribbean multi-media arts journal. The artist is Lindsay Braynen.


Excerpt from Oh Gad! (my new book due in 2012)

Friday Night Fish Fry (fiction) @ Sea Breeze – http://www.liberiaseabreeze.com/joanne_c_hillhouse.html

After Glow (fiction) @ Tongues of the Ocean – http://tonguesoftheocean.org/2009/11/after-glow

How to Make Cassava Bread and Other Musings on Culture (non fiction) @ Antigua Stories – http://antiguastories.wordpress.com/food-2/food

At Calabash (non fiction) @ Caribbean Literary Salon – https://wadadlipen.wordpress.com/2010/09/20/at-calabash

Defining Moments (non fiction) @ Geoffrey Philp’s blog – http://geoffreyphilp.blogspot.com/2010/12/defining-momentsjoanne-c-hillhouse.html

Off the Map (non fiction) @ Signifying Guyana –


What Calypso Taught Me About Writing (non fiction) @ Caribbean Literary Salon – http://caribbeanliterarysalon.ning.com/profiles/blogs/what-calypso-taught-me-about

At Sea (fiction) @ Munyori – http://www.munyori.com/joannehillhouse.html

Pushing Water Up Hill (non fiction) @ Caribbean Literary Salon – http://caribbeanliterarysalon.ning.com/profiles/blogs/pushing-water-up-hill-one

Wadadli Pen – Nurturing Another Generation of Antiguan and Barbudan Writers (non fiction) @ Summer Edward’s blog – http://summeredward.blogspot.com/2010/08/guest-post-by-joanne-c-hillhouse.html

Cold Paradise (fiction) @ Women Writers – http://www.womenwriters.net/aug08/fiction_poetry/Hillhouse_ColdParadise.htm

Somebody! (fiction) @ St. Somewhere – http://visitstsomewhere.blogspot.com

Reflections on Jamaca (non fiction) @ Caribbean Literary Salon – https://wadadlipen.wordpress.com/2010/09/19/reflections-on-jamaica

Portent (fiction) @ Women Writers – http://www.womenwriters.net/aug08/fiction_poetry/Hillhouse_Portent.htm

Philly Ramblings 8 (poetry) @ Ma Comère – http://dloc.com/AA00000079/00004/36j

Ghosts Laments (poetry) @ Small Axe – http://smallaxe.net/wordpress3/prose/2011/06/30/poem-by-joanne-hillhouse

Benediction before the Essence (poetry) @ Women Writers – http://www.womenwriters.net/aug08/fiction_poetry/hillhouse_poetry.html

Prospero’s Education, The Arrival, Da’s Calypso (3 poems) @ Calabash – http://www.nyu.edu/calabash/vol4no2

Interview @ Caribbean Literary Salon – http://caribbeanliterarysalon.ning.com/profiles/blogs/interview-with-joanne-c

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