Brought to you by the Book Lounge and the Fugard Theatre, Open Book Festival offers a world-class selection of book launches, panel discussions, workshops, masterclasses, readings, performances, and more. The Festival takes place from 5 to 9 September 2018. Read more here

Here's a list of discussions and sessions our authors will be participating in. Book your ticket and be part of the conversation. 

Wednesday, 5 September
12:00 – 13:00 | Homecoming Centre Workshop
Speculation past and future: Mohale Mashigo, Mphuthumi Ntabeni and Rahla Xenopoulos speak about letting their imaginations run wild across the centuries, in the company of Luso Mnthali.

14:00 – 15:00 | Homecoming Centre Workshop
True to life: Dudu Busani-Dube, Kharnita Mohamed and Sue Nyathi speak to Bonnie Mbuli about keeping it real.

16:00 – 17:00 | Fugard Studio
Living with history: Nicole Dennis-Benn, Mariana Enriquez and Craig Higginson speak to Wamuwi Mbao about the impact the past has
on their characters’ abilities to live well.

Thursday, 6 September
10:00 – 11:00 | Fugard Studio
Authentic voices: Desiree-Anne Martin, Elizabeth Moore and Rahla Xenopoulos speak to Joanne Jowell about accurate representation in their books.

14:00 – 15:00 | Fugard Studio
Abbreviated childhood: Christy Chilimigras, Nozizwe Cynthia Jele and Angela Makholwa discuss the impact of problematic parenting in their books, with Bonnie Mbuli.

14:00 – 15:00 | HCC Workshop
The adulting toolbox: Sam Beckbessinger, Siya Khumalo and Phumlani Pikoli speak to Africa Melane about accessing skills on the journey to adulthood

16.00 - 17.00 | Fugard Theatre
Doing it ourselves: Dudu Busani-Dube, Vangile Gantsho and Jackie Phamotse speak to Mohale Mashigo about journeys to publication.

16:00 – 17:00 | HCC Workshop
Life after loss: David Chariandy, Craig Higginson and Rehana Rossouw discuss their characters’ struggles to move forward, with Yewande Omotoso.

20:00 – 21:00| Fugard Theatre
Nasty women talk back: Editors Joy Watson and Amanda Gouws join contributors Rebecca Davis and Ashanti Kunene in a conversation with Thuli Madonsela at the launch of this book.

20: 00 – 21:00 | A4 Ground
Who are you: Aminatta Forna, Athena Farrokhzad and Sue Nyathi talk about immigrants and the possibilities of transnational identities, with Jennifer Malec.

20:00 – 21:00 | HCC Workshop
Investigative journalists: Anneliese Burgess, James-Brent Styan and Mandy Wiener discuss uncovering the truth and telling the story, with Jan-Jan Joubert.

Friday, 7 September
10:00 – 21:00 | Fugard Studio
Turning point: Haji Mohamed Dawjee, Ming-Cheau Lin and Iman Rappetti speak to Sara-Jayne King about defining moments on their journeys.

12:00 – 13:00 | Fugard Studio
Too close to comfort: Joanne Jowell, Mphuthumi Ntabeni and Mandy Wiener speak to Palesa Morudu about the distance between author and subject.

14:00 – 15:00 | Fugard Studio
This is not a blessing: Nicole Dennis-Benn, Angela Makholwa and Jackie Phamotse explore transactional sex and power in their novels. Chaired by Sara-Jayne King.

16:00 – 17:00 | HCC Workshop
Writing freedom: Tumelo Buthelezi, Haji Mohamed Dawjee and Phumlani Pikoli speak to Efemia Chela about the challenges of writing what they like.

18.00 - 19.00 | Fugard Studio
Elections: Judith February, Jan-Jan Joubert and Ralph Mathekga discuss likely outcomes of next year’s election. Chaired by Pippa Green.

18:00 – 19:00 | HCC Workshop
Upended lives: Qarnita Loxton, Angela Makholwa and Vanessa Raphaely speak to Jacqui L’Ange about putting their characters through hell.

20:00 – 21:00 | HCC Workshop
Media and resilience: Iman Rappetti, Mandy Wiener and Zapiro discuss the need for thick skins with Marianne Thamm.

Saturday, 8 September
10:00 – 11:00 | Fugard Studio
Struggles with masculinity: Niq Mhlongo, Phumlani Pikoli and Adam Smyer discuss their flawed male characters, with Koketso Sachane.

12:00 – 13:00 | Fugard Theatre
Lukhanyo Calata, Judith February and Palesa Morudu reflect on the values they grew up with and how they continue to inform their politics in the company of Africa Melane.

Sunday, 9 September
10:00 – 11:00 | Fugard Studio
Magical stories: Lesley Nneka Arimah, Mariana Enriquez and Mohale Mashigo discuss their brilliant collections with Nick Mulgrew.

12:00 – 13:00 | Homecoming Centre Gallery
Women who slay: Kay Carmichael, Mohale Mashigo and Mariko Tamaki speak to Alex Dodd about heroes in and out of capes.

14:00 – 15:00 | Fugard Theatre
Winning at life: Rebecca Davis, Haji Mohamed Dawjee and Siya Khumalo speak to Anne Hirsch about making room for curveballs

16:00 – 17:00 | Fugard Studio
Writers sports, cringe fact: Behind every success are 100 embarrassing failures. Nick Mulgrew plumbs the depths of great writers’ bad first attempts with Mohale Mashigo, Wamuwi Mbao, Mbongeni Nomkonwana, Ijangolet Ogwang, Adam Smyer and Zukiswa Wanner.

16:00 – 17:00 | HCC Workshop
Hazards of home: David Chariandy, Efemia Chela and Nicole Dennis-Benn speak to Rebecca Davis about finding safe spaces.

Visit for the full programme and bookings.