Africa Utopia, September 2019

This goes to show the power of “Yes!” We only woke up the fact that Africa Utopia, September 2019, would be on a week before the festival. This is an annual celebration of the African diaspora in the UK, which is held every summer at the Southbank Centre. There are seminars, performances, panels, and, of particular interest to us, a Marketplace of African-themed goods. Previous attendees have included . This year’s event included performances by the Kuti family, a show by Chinundu Onozo, and panels with Akala and Natalie Emmanuel. It also featured an appearance by Bino and Fino – more on them later!

We thought to ourselves “That would be the ideal place to market NanisoCreate and probably sell some copies of The Mysterious Melody – but surely it’s too late to acquire a stall?” But we we went ahead and sent the organisers an email, 1 week before the event. It turns out, it wasn’t too late after all, as there was a stall available on the Sunday of the 3 day event!

So we packed ourselves off to the Southbank Centre on Sunday morning, and, while it was definitely a long day, it was just as great as we had expected.

In the morning, there was a showing of a couple of episodes of Bino and Fino. This is a cartoon aimed at kids produced in Nigeria by Adamu Waziri and his company EVCL. It was great to see the kids capitivated by a positive and educational cartoon from Africa. Then later in the afternoon, we were throughly entertained by both a dance workshop and by Celestina Diamond and her Sunday Service, which featured several amazing gospel performers from the UK.

To top off the afternoon, we some of met our fellow stallholders, including Bianca of @thekuumbakids, and Samantha from @thisisbooklove_, and @houseofloulee! All in all it was a fabulous day, and we hope we get a chance to attend it next year!

Black History Month October 2019

Here are a couple of the events that we attended during Black History Month, October 2019!

On the 5th of October we travelled up to Birmingham and hosted a stall at the Black History Activity Books Launch 2019. This was only the 2nd time this event had been held, and it was hosted in a significantly larger venue due to it’s popularity last year. There were loads of stalls, presentations and activities for the kids and younger attendees. The attendance was high and everyone who came to the stall was enthusiastic about the book.

It was great to have the opportunity to be able to publicise ourselves and sell The Mysterious Melody in Birmingham. We found it inspiring to be part of such a large event, and made some brand new contacts. We even met some of the great entrepreneurs who we’ve followed and who are following us on social media, which is really inspiring. It’s given us some ideas of our own that we will be pursuing soon!

That weekend turned out to be a particularly busy one, because on Sunday the 6th we hosted a stall at the UK Vegans of Colour Black History Month Edition. This was their first such event, and it was held at Copeland Park in Peckham. There were plenty of stalls featuring fashion, art, clothes, and of course some really great food – we almost spent more time eating than selling! There were some really good workshops as well. It was great to see Bianca from thekuumbakids again – she held a couple of artistic sessions with the kids and they really enjoyed it! Thanks to Mickey for inviting us to come along!

Here’s a short video with a view of the hall and the stands at the UK Vegans of Colour event.

What NanisoCreate did during August 2019!

It turns out that when you’ve published a children’s book, the summer holidays become a very busy time! Here’s some of the events that we attended during August 2019.

Zimfest 2019

We’ve been to Zimfest before as a family, and we’re pleased to report that it’s still a lot of fun to attend as a stallholder! This year the event was held at Colesdale Farm in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire on the 3rd of August 2019. The Mysterious Melody was a very popular item, and we met a lot of old and new friends, including Gemma Griffiths, who gave a brilliant performance on the main stage.

Thanks to the hosts and organisers for arranging such a well-organised festival, we hope to be back next year!

Africa Youth Arise 2019

SP K-Mushambi and Kudzai Gumbo, who illustrated The Mysterious Melody, were invited to host a session at in the Africa Youth Arise Residential workshop on the 10th and 11th of August. They spoke to the 70 young people who attended and shared their backgrounds and what drove their artistic side.

This event also marked the public debut of the Tirivhu board game, which you can see in the pictures, which was designed by SP K-Mushambi and Kudzai Gumbo. While the young people played the game they shared their ambitions and discussed the help and hindrances that they might encounter while trying to achieve those ambitions.. We will be putting more development into the game and will share more details with you as we progress.

Thanks to Rumbi Mukoyi and her team for inviting us to AYA 2019, it was a privilege to work with you and the young attendees.

Go Africa Cultural Festival

Finally, along with Danni Blechner of Conscious Dreams Publishing and a number of her other authors, we attended the Go Africa Cultural Festival in Islington on the 17th of August 2019.

All of the Conscious Dreams authors, including Danni and SP K-Mushambi, gave a speech about their books, their background and their passions. They also met the Mayor of Islington, Councillor Rakhia Ismail, who gave a passionate speech about the importance of teaching children about their cultural heritage and that of others.

We’ve got a lot more events lined up through September and October, keep an eye on our social media to keep up to date!

NanisoCreate at Africa Writes 2019

On the 6th of July the children’s author SP K-Mushambi attended the annual book festival held by the Royal African Society, Africa Writes 2019. This year was the eight edition.

This weekend brought together over 60 of the most influential voices in contemporary writing from Africa and its diaspora. This exciting literary weekend featured writers from AlgeriaAngolaCameroonEgyptEthiopiaGhanaJamaicaKenyaLiberiaMoroccoNigeriaRwandaSierra LeoneSomaliaSudanTunisiaUgandaSouth AfricaUKUSAZambia and Zimbabwe, and highlighted themes of cosmology, masculinity, mental health and Africans in Europe amongst others. You can find out more about the authors and workshops who took part in the festival here.

There is an international book fair held alongside the festival, and we were lucky enough to be offered a stall. “The Mysterious Melody” was on sale and the author was on hand to speak to attendees about the book and about Naniso and Shinga! Below are some pictures that we took at the event, and others are available on our Instagram and Facebook pages.

Africa Writes 2019!

Africa Writes 2019

We’re delighted to announce that on the 6th of July, we will be at the international book fair at the Africa Writes 2019 festival! Come and see us at our stall where you can buy your copy of The Mysterious Melody and meet the author SP K-Mushambi! Check out the fantastic programme for the festival itself which brings together 60 of the most influential voices in contemporary African writing at the British Library!