Trinidadians Making Waves in 2009

I am a white woman of the Caribbean and a writer. While white people make up around 1% of the population in the Caribbean, making them rare-ish, white people, let alone white women who write – well that’s rarer than hen’s teeth. There are only one or two who have become really famous in the past: Jean Rhys and Phyllis Shand Allfrey.

So it’s something of an incredible freak statistic that this year, 2009, another white female writer from Trinidad has just publsihed a book. Her name is Amanda Smyth and her book , set in Tobago, Black Rock, (Tindal Street Press) has been getting rave reviews. My friend Donna Daley-Clarke mentioned Smyth to me about  a year ago: “Yeah, I must get you two together.” That sort of thing. I forgot about it, till I began to hear about Black Rock. I’ve Googled Smyth, of course, and found that’s she’s a babe. So now I’m more than  a touch intrigued. We must meet. I keep explaining to my publicist that it would be rather a coup to have us do something together.

So this sexy white woman writer type from Trinidad (who I don’t know personally, odd) is also publishing a book in 2009. Wow.

And then my friend the poet Anthony Joseph came out with an absolutely sizzling new collecion of poems Bird Head Son (Salt). I was lucky enough to teach with Anthony at Lumb Bank last year and so heard some of these poems then. Also  Trinidadian, Anthony is a fine poet and a musician, fronting a band called The Spasm Band, an eight piece afro-jazz affar. Anthony, over six foot and sexy-like sexy-self – is also a shy man, self-effacing, unassuming. Yet bold and electrifying on stage.

Anthony, as I found out from spending a week with him at Lumb – is a rampant insomniac.

So: in the space of three months; there will be this amazing constellation of Trinidadians publishing in the UK: Amanda Smyth’s Black Rock came out in March, Anthony Joseph’s Bird Head Son came out soon after. The White Woman on the Green Bicycle is out in July.

Phew.

I find this rather exciting. Not just to be published at all. But to be published alongside my fellow Trinidadians. Fuck, it’s great.

Someone book us, please.

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~ by moniqueroffey on May 14, 2009.

5 Responses to “Trinidadians Making Waves in 2009”

  1. Hi Monique
    Sounds good! Let’s meet!
    Amanda

  2. What’s your tel no etc?
    Mx

  3. Monique, send me yr number and I’ll try you – either on thurs/friday lunch or on the weekend…amanda

  4. email me at monique@moniqueroffey.phonecoop.coop
    and I’ll send you my tel no,
    yes strange address,
    mx

  5. weird, it bounced back. email me at amanda_smyth@btinternet.com

    x

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