Submerged, a thank you (and a final accolade)
Nearly a year after the publication of the 428-page Submerged adventure and with 2017 upon us, I am itching to get my teeth into new projects, most importantly, writing.
With my debut novel, it was more than a dream come true. Feeling the printed copy with the arresting cover, sneaking cellphone pics of it on the shelves in the bookstores, even ‘rearranging’ the title to be displayed in more visible spaces, fearfully scanning sales reports, and panicky press interviews. Terrified that nobody would come to the book launches (didn’t happen, thankfully).
I treasure the support from my family, friends and the greater writing and reading community. During this journey old friendships were rekindled and I met the most fascinating, generous and smart people in the industry, friends for life.
I’ve learned many lessons during this journey, but that will comprise volumes and I will perhaps write about it sometime.
The majority of readers who bought the book, was for enjoyment, a typical holiday read, and that made me very happy.
But I can’t express my surprise and joy enough that the Submerged adventure didn’t end there. Interviewers (at the book launches, radio presenters and journalists) and reviewers (both professional and part-timers) invested extra hours taking the novel apart, publishing their verdicts, informing readers’ buying decisions. Then, also showing real interest in me, my life and background, like being introduced to a new friend.
So, the latest, hopefully not the last honour and of which I’m perhaps the proudest, was when a peer book review of Submerged was published in the December 2016 issue of Writing360, the Graduate Journal of Research and Creative Writing of the University of the Western Cape. (Link: Writing 360, UWC Journal of Research & Creative Writing )From the Journal: The Journal affords postgraduates and emerging scholars, as well as established creative artists within UWC and South Africa at large the opportunity to read and engage with the texts featured in the Journal. The Journal also maintains the standard of peer review and wishes to provide a platform to develop a culture of publishing.
Admittedly, as expected in a publication of this standard and the skill and insight of Dr Grant Andrews, the reviewer, commentary isn’t always complimentary. But overall the review is extremely useful and inspires me to continue honing my craft. Creative Writing postgraduate students will hopefully also gain much value in reading both the novel and review from a scholarly perspective.
The review concludes:
Overall, Wiid is a welcome and unique voice in South African crime fiction, and his debut novel shows tremendous promise.
Till next time!