A diverse range of stories is included in the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission’s Gold Anthology launched earlier this evening at the Knutsford Court Hotel in Kingston.
The ten contributors have two things in common – they all won gold medals in the national literary competition run by the JCDC, and they were entered in the competition from 1999-2006. Contributors are Rudolph Wallace, Verone Johnston, Michael Reckford, Claudette Beckford-Brady, A-Dziko Simba, Nadine Tomlinson, Charmaine Morris, Rhonda Harrison, Carroll Edwards and yours truly.
In the foreword, Professor Edward Baugh commended the JCDC for its initiative in publishing the anthology, its second. This one helps to mark the agency’s 50 years of existence.
“The stories in this collection afford much pleasure, even as they engage the mind and the imagination,” he said.
“There are levels of achievement but a few are superlative. We may find ourselves asking of their authors, “Where have these people been?”
Andrew Brodber, Speech, Drama and Literary Arts Specialist at the JCDC says the collection includes “some of the best gold-winning stories awarded” in the annual competition.
“This feast of gold awarded works will provide new material for leisure reading, for academics and schools of all levels, as well as provide Jamaica with a billboard of creative works which may be considered for film or such other creative work,” he continues.
The stories include “Meeting Sam Sharpe,” my children’s story. It begins in modern day Jamaica, and sees two children travelling back in time to 1831, where they have an encounter with freedom fighter Sam Sharpe.
Two of the other stories are “Fi-Wi Mango Dem” by Claudette Beckford-Brady which tells the story of a neighbourly dispute over a mango tree, while “Wherever You May Be” by Rudolph Wallace is an irreverent tale narrated by a dead woman using the internet to explain how she died.