Hi everyone, hope your Friday’s been kickass so far.
I’m back with Part Two of the Contributor’s Spotlight-series of posts. In case you weren’t here for the first post, what I’m doing is introducing you (and in some cases, reminding you of) the authors who’s stories you’ll be reading (and enjoying, hopefully) once AfroSF is published in December.
What is AfroSF? Check out this post for the details, including an interview I did with AfroSF editor and publisher, Ivor Hartmann. AfroSF is the first Science Fiction anthology featuring the work of African Science Fiction writers – ground-breaking in every sense of the word, and definitely something to look forward to! AfroSF will be published in December en eBook format, and some time thereafter in a print-edition.
In part one I featured Liam Kruger (Closing Time), S.A Partridge (Planet X), Chiagozie Fred Nwonwu (Masquerade Stories), Mia Arderne (Brandy City), Mandisi Nkomo (Heresy), and Tade Thompson (Notes from Gethsemane).
Today I’ll be introducing you to more writers and, where possible, allow them to give you a bit of an intro to their stories. Let’s get to it, shall we?
My name is Martin Stokes. I’m a 20 year old BA Communication Sciences student and work as a bartender. I like science fiction and romance… but I have a love of the night and the restless wind and the pawing dead. Horror, in a word. The story that will appear in AfroSF, ‘Claws and Savages’, is my second published short story and concerns itself with a future South Africa that shares vague similarities with today’s one.
I wrote it kind of as an allegory because it just seemed relevant at the time, but it turned out to be a decent story as well.
My name is Ashley Jacobs, first-time author and scum of the medical world by way of being a young South African doctor, and I blog over at The Urban Eagle. Growing up I was naturally drawn to science fiction and particularly the subgenre of cyberpunk. Science fiction with an international flavour has recently become a passion of mine so being part of the first anthology of original African works is both exciting and inspiring for me.
‘New Mzansi’ is essentially about a young guy who is forced to find his place in a rather dystopian future South Africa. The idea for the story came from the realization that South Africa and medicine provided the perfect backdrop for the intersection of technology and humanity. I had fun drawing from my medical background for it with a few other geeky interests blended in with a local twist. Hope you enjoy reading it.
I’m part of the AfroSF writers, my story is called ‘To Gaze At The Sun’. So here is a general idea of how my story unfolds: ‘To Gaze At The Sun‘ is about a couple’s experience as they struggle to adopt a son. When the son finally arrives he is not the exact idea of what they are looking for. Here’s my blog.
I’m thrilled to be in Afro SF, indeed the first anthology of African writers of science fiction, so kudos to editor Ivor Hartmann for compiling this collection. My own story, ‘Azania‘, is a post-colonial slant on the familiar colonial tropes of planetary colonisation – but with pain, food, culture and sexual tensions thrown in – a typical human story then, despite its otherworldly setting.
I studied a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Drama and English with a minor in Jazz Voice. Despite my degree, a stint teaching high school drama, I somehow ended up as a graphic designer by day and a speculative fiction writer by night. I am naturally inclined to write children’s fiction but when it comes to science-fiction I tend to veer towards short adult fiction (probably inspired by my subscription to Asimov’s). I spend my free time dabbling in song-writing, trying to sketch like Chris Riddell, Googling the latest technological trends, downloading copious amounts of fonts (I’m a collector) and reading voraciously.
‘Five Sets of Hands‘ is a story set off planet, on a far future Mars. Though it’s not set in Africa it deals with something I think is close to the heart of most Africans – the gift and power of community in spite of hardship.
Cristy Zinn lives in Durban where she works as a graphic designer. She won the 2011 NOVA Science Fiction and Fantasy competition with a story called Inactive but Five Sets of Hands will be her first published work. You can see more of her unpublished stories at www.cristyzinn.com where she also interviews writers and blogs about writing.
Uko Bendi Udo
Identity. It’s a prickly issue that haunts us all on a daily basis. The questions percolate within (who am I?), and without (who are we?). On a micro level, humans are spliced into many groups and sub-groups, and the categorization continues to this day. A hundred years from now, on a macro level, what form of the Homo sapien will walk this earth? Would he/she remain a purebred (strictly human), or would he/she morph into something totally different? How about a mixture of Earthling and Milinian, some yet undiscovered world out there populated with human-like forms? Many questions. ‘The Foreigner‘ tackles the concept head-on with a protagonist whose DNA is Nigerian and other-worldly.
My name is Uko Bendi Udo, and I was born and raised in Nigeria. I currently reside in the USA.
Here’s a list of the authors and stories that will be appearing in AfroSF:
‘Moom!’ Nnedi Okorafor
‘Home Affairs’ Sarah Lotz
‘Five Sets of Hands’ Cristy Zinn
‘New Mzansi’ Ashley Jacobs
‘Azania’ Nick Wood
‘Notes from Gethsemane’ Tade Thompson
‘Planet X’ S.A. Partridge
‘The Gift of Touch’ Chinelo Onwualu
‘The Foreigner’ Uko Bendi Udo
‘Angel Song’ Dave de Burgh
‘The Rare Earth’ Biram Mboob
‘Terms & Conditions Apply’ Sally-Ann Murray
‘Heresy’ Mandisi Nkomo
‘Closing Time’ Liam Kruger
‘Masquerade Stories’ Chiagozie Fred Nwonwu
‘The Trial’ Joan De La Haye
‘Brandy City’ Mia Arderne
‘Ofe!’ Rafeeat Aliyu
‘Claws and Savages’ Martin Stokes
‘To Gaze at the Sun’ Clifton Gachagua
‘Proposition 23’ (Novelette) Efe Okogu
The next post featuring more AfroSF contributors will be up on Monday, and don’t forget, AfroSF will be published in early December, so you’ve got plenty of time to start making a list of everyone you know who’ll enjoy this anthology.