Mmabasi’s Legacy is an ecosystem that’s built to facilitate access to drivers of book markets and offering specially curated programs and curriculums, designed to ensure success for our community.
Literary Agents determine what books are seen on bookshelves. Their choices are mostly driven by their own taste, as well as excellent writing. Notable publishers only deal with literary agents or editors. Writers aren’t able to just walk into a publishing house and ask to be published. You have to go through the gatekeepers. We work to bring this access to you!
During my own process of finding a literary agent, I was fortunate to have had my manuscript land on the desks of some of the most sought after literary agents. But of course, I had enlisted an editor who is highly achieved in the literary world, to guide me and help me whip the manuscript into shape.
And before that, I had access to every class imaginable, to help me polish my writing and I also attended workshops and classes taught by publishers, agents and editors, who taught extensively about the business of publishing. Every move I made brought me closer and closer to improving my chances of getting published the traditional way or whichever way I wanted.
Here in New York, I had access to all the information I needed and had access to the drivers of the global literary market as well. This process led me to mull over just how slim the chances are for writers who lived in areas without the access I had.
I thought about writers in my own birth country, Botswana. Those thoughts evolved into recognizing that whatever challenges writers in Botswana faced, would be pretty much equal to the struggles of writers in other countries in Africa, as a whole. And this is what inspired me to facilitate the writers’ conferences.
I am a student of the craft, just like other members of this community. It’s an honor to be of service to you in this way, but I’m not the educator here, I am the quintessential member of this writing community. I know very intimately what the writers’ needs are.
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Well, I think you can never really separate literature from politics and advocacy. I often think a lot about the early Fidel Castro era in Cuba, when writers had to smuggle their manuscripts because it was illegal to publish anything that was not aligned with that regime. I think about the daunting task of those writers who were determined to document their truth, and the urgency in which those manuscripts needed to make it out of Cuba, because the stories that lived on those pages were hidden from the rest of the world. It was essential for people to witness, whether near or far.
I think about what it meant for the international community to be in the know about what the writers were communicating to them; the life that their fellow humans in Cuba were experiencing, regardless of whether one thinks their experiences were good or bad. And I think about the contemplations and ruminations that rippled throughout the international community, after having been informed. There were actions that were taken by governments in support of the people of Cuba, and similarly, there were actions that were taken in support of the Castro regime.
We are not here to be of service to political parties, of any country for that matter. But, we do support human rights of all and recognize the pillars of democracy as the main factor for thriving communities across the world.
We are committed to bringing attention to what we deem as human rights violations within the continent. We do have interest in building alliances for the sole reason of holding governments accountable to basic human rights.