Botho Lejowa, a Motswana writer won the AWT’s 2020 Seed Fund for Emerging Publishers worth EURO 4,200 for her manuscript project, Meetings with Death. The fund was conducted under our Publishing Fellowship Programme (PFP). The specific aim of the seed fund is to facilitate the winner to produce a model publication that adheres to international publishing standards.
Meetings with Death is a story about a Southern African girl, Eana, with the unique ability to predict death. The novel explores themes of spirituality, magic, taboo, rituals and supernatural entities; cleverly woven into a modern fantasy that’s set in both the streets of our everyday lives and the realms of ancestral beings.
Edited by AWT alumni Otieno Owino, Kenyan editor and publisher and Crystal Butungi Rutangye, founder of Scribe House, a publishing agency in Uganda, this is a novel that celebrates African heritage while exhibiting Botho`s remarkable storytelling abilities.
Botho said, `I’m really proud of this body of work. I feel like I’ve finally found my voice as a writer and Meetings with Death is the perfect representation of that voice. The story is loosely based on Southern African belief systems made into fantasy, which is a tribute to my cultural roots. I hope that everyone reading it feels as magical as I did writing it.’’
Congratulations Botho. We are proud of you!!