Things I read or view or listen to that you might like too. Things will be added – up to about 20 or so – before this installment in the Reading Room and Gallery series is archived. For previous and future installments in this series, use the search feature to the right. Possible warning for adult language and themes.
“You’re wearing your yard slippers
Likewise, I say nothing
Think of the breaking of the shell
self” – “The Last Time” by Jason Allen-Paisant
‘“Keep ahead of those dogs,” Rose said. “They’re all hers. All mean just like her.”’ – “Last Stop on Route Nine” by Tananarive Due in Nightmare magazine
Images from Art Week in Antigua and Barbuda in CREATIVE SPACE #9 OF 2023: MY BARBUDA ART HOP
Virtual tour and other visuals from the 2022 Bermuda Biennial. The art is great but I love that it includes literary arts – they get it.
“…it was only towards the end of his life that he became accepted.” (re Édouard Manet)
Documentary film by Dr. James Knight – The Making of the Monarch –
“Judy taught a lot of people that they’ll never know everything. That your body will change, and so will your heart, so it’s OK to change your mind.” – Judy Blume doesn’t miss Writing. She’s not afraid of dying Either by Selome Hailu
“He once said his goal was to create and produce plays which would be as popular in Dominica as the American films that packed in people by the hundreds every weekend.” – The Remarkable Alwyn Bully by Honor Ford-Smith in Stabroek News
“In May we launched a vote to curate a list of ten essential books for men, written by women. Our campaign aimed to encourage more men to read novels by women born out of statistical research in Mary Ann Sieghart’s bestselling book The Authority Gap. Mary Ann’s research demonstrated that whilst women read novels by men and women almost equally, fiction written by women is rarely read by men.” – 10 Essential Reads for Men, by Women
‘“women were at the forefront of the protest” and have always been sparks in political action, notwithstanding their shamefully deficient numbers in elected office.’ – CREATIVE SPACE #7 OF 2023 – ANTIGUAN AND BARBUDAN WOMEN AND POLITICAL ACTION
“Though she thought in an utterly non-nationalistic, pan-Caribbean way, Jennifer’s writing was always deeply immersed in the Trinidadian landscape. In Songster, the final piece reflects on what it means to stay and live in the land of her birth. Her Trinidad is ‘not a world in my head like a fantasy’, but the island that ‘lives and moves in the bloodstream’. Her reflections on the nature of small island life is as fierce and perceptive as Jamaica Kincaid’s A Small Place, but it comes from and arrives at a quite opposite place. What she found in her island was a certain existential insouciance and the capacity of its people, whatever their material circumstance, to commit to life in the knowledge of its bitter-sweetness. In her most recent published collection of poems, Sanctuaries of Invention, much of which was written under the curfew of Covid-19, there’s a brilliant sequence of poems, (“mapping home”) that chart journeys (made in the head) from Valencia, through Salybia, Balandra, Rampanalgas, Cumana, Toco and L’Anse Noir – places that these poems bring to sensuous geographic, human and historical life. You sense that this was her Trinidad, her places of resilience and hope.” – “A Season of Sorrow: Jennifer Rahim (1963-2023)” on Peepal Tree Press’ Wha’ppen blog by Jeremy Poynting
‘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
“There’s a story behind every image in the segregation series, each doing its part to answer the question: What does it look like when Black women are othered and yet refuse to allow that othering to destroy them? The series became a rejection of the status quo, a denial to be deemed less than.” – ‘Through Gordon Parks’ Photographs, I Found My Beauty Outside the White Gaze‘ by Khalisa Rae in Jezebel
“I wasn’t trying to write to be funny; I wanted to just write normally in my own voice about things but to use the creole and I think I successfully did that.” – Woman’s HerStory Month 2022 Brown Girl Reads facebook live discussion with Lisa Allen-Agostini, discussing her Women’s Prize short listed book The Bread the Devil Knead
“I was in a daze, I think, when I was in Yale.” – ZZ Packer (Drinking Coffee Elsewhere) on Ursa Short Fiction podcast with authors Deesha Philyaw (The Secret Lives of Church Ladies) and Dawnie Walton (The Final Revival of Opal & Nev)
“I wrote what felt true to the character and the world of the story.” – Joanne C. Hillhouse
One correction: On the second page where it says “where the lick”, it should say “were the lick” (from the Antiguan-Barbudan vernacular). Pointed out as the error changes the meaning of the sentence.
“Again there is a theme, it’s like people seeing some potential in me and me going ‘okay’…and also you have to do a bit yourself; luck is hard work meets opportunity” – Jacob Anderson, Black British actor and singer with Caribbean roots (currently appearing as Louis on Interview with the Vampire)
“I will never forget my dad holding my face, looking me in my eyes, and letting me know how beautiful I am,” Tasheka said. “He told me my skin, the power that is in my melanin; he told me about my hair, how beautiful my hair is; and then he went on to speak about my African culture and specifically how powerful my ancestors were…he allowed this spark to light up within me.” – Tasheka Lavann in CREATIVE SPACE – BACK TO AFRICA
“I’m happier writing about women’s lives, particulary their inner lives. Women’s outer lives are so much more owned by others. They have a great deal of responsibility for making sure the world runs for the maximum benefit for the maximum number yet often have little agency or power. How they manage responsibility and relative outward powerlessness makes for rich, complex inner lives.” – Barbara Jenkins in conversation with Jacqueline Bishop for her #InConversation series in the Bookends section of the Jamaica Observer.
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, To be a Cheetah, and Oh Gad!). All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed it, check out my blog, including my CREATIVE SPACE art and culture column, which is refresthed every other Wednesday, 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.