Nalis celebrates 55 new authors
The National Library and Information System Authority (Nalis) celebrated 55 Trinidad and Tobago authors who published for the first time in 2022 at its 14th First Time Authors’ (FTA) Appreciation Programme. The 2023 FTA event was held on May 9 at the auditorium, Government Campus, Richmond Street, Port of Spain.
Through this programme, Nalis encourages new writers to enter the publishing arena, promotes the works of local authors, and promotes the reading habit. Those honoured this year published their work from January-December 2022, a media release said.
Kenneth Ramchand, Professor Emeritus of English, delivered the feature address at the event. He recognised that Nalis had celebrated over 500 authors since the establishment of its FTA in 2010, and said it would be interesting to know if these authors continued to write, and which have become well-known or even famous writers. Ramchand said writing helps authors steady their own personal world, find themselves, explore the meaning of life and allows them to make and remake their lives.
Nalis’ executive director Paula Greene told the honourees, “Your books are now added to TT’s literary landscape and will be made available to library users. There is this notion that books are no longer fashionable. Almost 600 books later; this programme affords us the opportunity to witness first-hand that that notion is without foundation."
She said people have varying reading interests and they are reading in a variety of formats.
"It is therefore incumbent on our authors to understand audience diversity and to embrace the various publication formats, which include audio books, Braille books and e-books.
"As the authorised entity under the Marrakesh Treaty, of particular interest to us is that books are made available in accessible formats for persons who are visually impaired, blind and print disabled.”
Among the 55 writers celebrated, 22 were male and 33 female in the seven-84 age range. The genres covered are fiction and non-fiction, and consist of poetry, novels, autobiographies and handbooks, including a number of children’s titles. Popular topics are relationships and culture in TT; health and wellness, disability; prominent people and religion, the release said.
Among the books were a number-one hit release on Amazon titled Lilac Honey: A collection of Poems by AM Ali; Rosetta Ransome's poems, My Way of Life, which she started writing 30 years ago; Reneé Joseph’s stories, which were first written for an imaginative/creative writing project for her English class in 2000; and Alake Pilgrim’s Zo and the Forest of Secrets (Knights Of, 2022), a fantasy adventure set in nature in Trinidad, which was shortlisted for the Bocas Lit Fest Children's Book Prize.
An exhibition displaying the bios, photos and books of the 55 first-time authors is on at the News Media Room, National Library.
"Nalis celebrates 55 new authors"