Independent publisher and bookseller Jacaranda is to launch an online book festival in December, celebrating a new wave of black British authors.
#Twentyin2020 Online Book Festival will showcase the 20 authors published this year under Jacaranda's Twenty in 2020 scheme, and is focused on exploring the black experience through writing.
The scheme saw 20 titles by 20 black Britons released by the publisher in one year, across adult fiction, non-fiction and poetry, with the aim of "normalising the presence of diverse literature and to embed the voices of emerging black voices as valued members of British culture and society".
Festival participants will be able to attend sessions including "Empowering Black Women Through Romance Writing", "Between Two Worlds: Exploring Mixed-Race identity" and "The Poets of #Twentyin2020".
The festival will also feature conversations with Stella Oni, author of Deadly Sacrifice, discussing what is means to be a black female crime writer, and Shola von Reinhold, investigating the censorship of black queer voices in the arts and literature space. The full line-up is still be announced.
On curating the festival, sales, publicity and marketing manager Jazzmine Breary said: “This year has been a difficult year, particularly for the black community, but it has also been a year of great achievement, showing our resilience, creativity and talent. The #TwentyIn2020 programme was created to celebrate and share diverse black British voices and stories and this festival is a perfect representation of that vision, paying homage to the 20 incredible black British writers of #TwentyIn2020.
"It is a day of collaboration, discovery, joy and unity. I cannot think of better partners than Alex Fane and Juanita Rosenior to bring this festival to life. We are grateful to Audible UK for their continued support.”
The festival is produced by the publisher in collaboration with Fane Productions, Boutique Marcomms and talent management agency TGRG. It is sponsored by Audible.
FANE founder Alex Fane added: “Jacaranda’s work is truly inspirational. This festival aims to champion that in the biggest possible online way. It’s a festival for discussion, exploration and learning, but also a celebration of all #Twentyin2020 has achieved.”
A proportion of the profits from the event will be donated to Black Cultural Archives (BCA), the UK’s only heritage centre dedicated to collecting, preserving and celebrating the histories of African and Caribbean people in Britain.
The festival will take place on 5th December, from noon to 6 p.m., acessible through Fane Productions website.