I lack some very basic qualities of a journalist. Not that I am not cynical enough, but at times I can also get excited. I don’t feel the need to criticise what doesn’t need criticising. I am openly out of the closet fan of certain things. I don’t think that makes me less objective when I talk and write about them; after all, I like them because I like them. There’s no particular unconditional love in these fan relationships.
As a journalist and as a fan the past few days have been exciting because I think, as sincerely as I only can, that South Africa is living very interesting times literature wise. The new wave of Black, often a-political, witty, intelligent and engaging opinion leaders and writers has arrived in a big style and I have had a chance to chat and meet with almost every one that I have enjoyed reading. Granted there must be others that I didn’t get to meet and whose books I haven’t read, but it’s been a privilege nonetheless.
Like the previous post was already plugging, the last one of these new guys was Ndumiso Ngcobo. The author of Some of my Best Friends are White chatted with us after his presentation at the publisher's stand. He’s pretty cool; a bit of an anecdotalist and observer. He also blogs and based on the book, blog, presentation and our interview, he’s a kind of person that one would like to have as an in-house opinion machine. To sort of comment every story, and hey, since both in his book and presentation he mentioned an arrangement similar to this being his dream, if only we had the funding to hire him, we probably would.
Tuesday is the last day of the book fair. We’ll still go there to record bits and pieces before we put everything finally together. It’s been busy but wonderful few days. It’s great time to live in South Africa. It may not be a perfect country, but having lived in a handful of countries, what is.