- Sankofa’s Pen 9th anniversary
- My ByBlacks January and February articles
- Antiracist Kitchen cover reveal
- Author offers ‘joyous’ presentations during Black History Month article
- TorontoStar Crossword Puzzle
Letter from the editor
Greetings. It’s February! Black history month! African liberation month! The shortest and coldest month, and I’m booked! This is my busiest month in terms of presentations. I share the same sentiments as many Black artists. So far, this month, I’ve presented at seven different institutions (libraries and schools). In a few hours, I will be presenting to a school. I love to share my stories with a wide variety of audiences. And since this is the first time I can present in February and in person, I value the times all the more. What’s different for me this year also is how I prepared for February. I pre-planned and completed certain tasks before the month began which helped a lot. Still, I juggle my other duties as a part-time elementary teacher, part-time college professor (one-course), and writer. I try to make sure my wellness is also a priority. And of course, no presentations on Sundays. Please check out my schedule in the events section of this newsletter, plus my Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook has the most updates and details. Stay warm this February and hopefully I’ll see you at an event soon.
Nadia L. Hohn
Community has always been an important value to me in every job/work that I do. It's something I take with me in my writing work too.
Today was really special.
I organized a Black Kidlit Creators Brunch at Boukan restaurant in Toronto with members of Sankofa's Pen (formerly known as the AfricanCanadianWriters and Illustrators for Children and Young Adults/ACWCYA), a group I started nine years ago. Now we're an online Facebook group. This was the first time we gathered in person in several years.
In attendance were: Joseph Osei Bonsu, Kern Carter, Ndija Anderson-Yantha, Sade Smith Author, Chesand Manana Gloria, Kimberly Dawkins, Alexandra C. Yeboah, and Nadia L. Hohn.
We shared our books, challenges, triumphs, and goals.
We look forward to doing this again in the spring 2023.
Check out our books and support our work.
Thanks Amanda Hamer and her team for the wonderful food and hospitality.
In my January article for #ByBlacks, I had the honour of interviewing @ucalgary professor and author, Suzette Mayr, PhD. Dr. Mayr’s 2022 novel, #TheSleepingCarPorter, won the 2022 #Scotiabank #GillerPrize valued at $100, 000 CAD. #TheGiller is juried and awarded annually to one #Canadian author for their novel or short story collection, traditionally published in Canada.
A new feature of my monthly column are newly published books by #BlackCanadian creators.
Congratulations Suzette Mayr!
Stay tuned for a link to my blog where you’ll find questions I asked Suzette that didn’t make it into the article. (The word count cap is real.)
You can find the link to the article in my bio and here: https://byblacks.com/entertainment/books/item/3330-meet-dr-suzette-mayr-the-2022-scotiabank-giller-prize-winner
In my February article for #ByBlacks, I had the honour of interviewing Ainara Alleyne, bookstageammer/booktuber and host of “Ainara’s Bookshelf”, a TVO/ web series.
The series highlights diverse authors of middle grade and young adult books , as well as titles. My favourite featured authors are Janae Marks and Jerry Craft and Canadian literary giants like Lawrence Hill and David A. Robertson.
Ainara’s Bookshelf is easy going, featuring Ainara and each author talking about books while engaged in a fun activity like biking, stargazing, or cake decorating.
As of January 2023, a new feature of my monthly column is a list of newly released books by #BlackCanadian creators.
You can read the full article at the link in my bio or here: https://byblacks.com/entertainment/books/item/3337-ainara-s-bookshelf-is-diversifying-what-we-read-one-book-at-a-time
You can view the series on TVO or @marblemediaofficial YouTube channel.
If you or a Black author you know is releasing a book in 2023, please send me details if you wish for it to be in the monthly new releases list. Please send them to nadialhohn.com/contact.
This is the gorgeous cover of my ninth book, THE ANTIRACIST KITCHEN: 21 STORIES (AND RECIPES).
In 2019, I had an idea for a #middle-grade #anthology. I spoke to a few publishers.
Then 2020 happened. A modern Civil Rights movement. A need for changes. So many communities had been affected. Discussions about racism and inequality were being centred and it seemed like people were giving the microphone to racialized communities and people were listening... finally!
Many organizations and people still had a far way to go.
So, I changed my ideas for the anthology.
I approached another publisher.
And then we went to work, all while I attended grad school, taught writing courses, and wrote articles and a few other books.
Finally... THE ANTIRACIST KITCHEN is here.
I’m so happy to have so many award-winning authors contribute to THE ANTIRACIST KITCHEN and I can’t wait to have this collection out in the world. The gorgeous colourful illustrations of Roza Nozari bring each author’s story to life. The gorgeous photos of food are an extravagant treat for the senses. And you’ll absolutely love the foreword. I can’t wait to share who has written it.
Thanks you Orca Books for your enthusiasm and hard work, sharing the vision, and giving this project wings.
Details will be shared over the next few months.
Pre-orders will start very soon. (This helps with sales and marketing of this book.)
Coming to a bookstore and online retailer near you in October 2023.
Thanks so much to Tania Theriault who wrote this beautiful interview to highlight my books and presentations in Burlington and Oakville (Halton region).
You can read the entire article at the link in my bio.
Illustrator Irene Luxbacher and I were BOTH featured in today’s @thetorontostar crossword puzzle.
Did you buy your copy? I bought 3.
I received wonderful news from the gifted illustrator of my #Malaikaseries books.
BOTH of us were featured as interconnected clues.
I’ve head somewhere that if you’re mentioned in a crossword puzzle , it means you’re famous.
I wonder what it means when it has been the second time for #MalaikasWinterCarnival? (The first time was in 2021.)
Thanks to Kelly Ann Buchanan and the #TorontoStar team for showing our book some love. It means a lot to me to know how much my story is appreciated. Thanks for including Irene Luxbacher. As an illustrator, she brings my story to life.
These kinds of recognitions never get lost in me and I bought 3 copies of this newspaper.
I think of the little Black-girl-child-of-working-class-immigrants in me in #JaneandFinch/#Rexdale in the 1980s and 1990s who always walked around with a pen and paper with stories in her head, feeling misunderstood. I think of the many times I wrote letters (to the @torontosunonline and @cbc #Wonderstruck) as a kid and asked my dad to mail them and seeing/hearing my name for the first time.
That little girl is beaming right now and taking a bow.
Thank you, God, for blessing me with this gift and giving me opportunities to use it. May it bless someone else.
“Ainara’s Bookshelf is Diversifying What We Read One Book at a Time”, ByBlacks February 2023
“Meet Dr. Suzette Mayr: The 2022 Scotiabank Giller Prize Winner”, ByBlacks January 2023
“Celebrate Black Canadian Authors This Holiday Season with These 36 Books”, ByBlacks December 2022
“If You Love Black Panther, Then You’ll Love These Books”, ByBlacks November 2022
“The Hairy Truth” and “A Deeper Meaning”, Owl Magazine, November 2022
“Three Black Organizations Working to Get Us Reading,” byblacks, October 2022
“Top 10 Summer Reads for Black Canadian Kids,” byblacks,
Travelling Across Canada’s Underground Railroad, Owl magazine (January/February 2022)
“Kojo’s Holiday”, Chickadee magazine (December 2021).
“How Harriet’s Daughter Helped Me Find My Way as a Black Canadian and a Writer for Young People”, Arc Poetry magazine (Arc 96 Islands of Influence Caribbean Canadian edition) (Fall 2021).
“Writer with a Capital W”, University of Waterloo podcast
“Writer Finds Resilience Stories Black Women and Girls”, University of Waterloo magazine (Spring 2021).
Patty Dreams (Owlkids), Spring 2025.
Journey to Grandma's House (Groundwood Books), Fall 2024.
The Antiracist Kitchen: 21 Stories (and Recipes) (Orca Books), Fall 2023.
Malaika, Carnival Queen (Groundwood Books), Spring 2023.
Kwanzaa section in Celebrate with me! Recipes, Crafts, and Holiday Fun from around the world (Magic Cat Publishing/Abrams Kids), 2022
Contributor to 100+ Voices for Miss Lou: Poetry, Tributes, Interviews, Essays anthology (UWI Press), 2021.
Louise Go A Country in 100+ Voices of Miss Lou: Poetry, Tributes, Interviews, Essays (UWI Press, 2022).
Interview in Contemporary Canadian Picture Books: A Critical Review for Educators, Librarians, Families, Researchers, & Writers by Beverley Brenna, Richard Dionne, and Theresa Tavares (Brill, 2021).
Malaika's Surprise (Groundwood Books), Spring 2021 https://houseofanansi.com/products/malaikas-surprise French version available in 2022 by Éditions Scholastic, Malaika's Surprise Book Trailer
A Likkle Miss Lou: How Jamaican Poet Louise Bennett-Coverley Found Her Voice (Owlkids), Aug. 15, 2019
Harriet Tubman: Freedom Fighter (Harper Collins), 2018
Malaika's Winter Carnival (Groundwood Books), 2017 (available in French and English paperback http://scholastic.ca/editions/livres/view/le-carnaval-de-malaika)
Malaika's Costume (Groundwood Books www.groundwoodbooks.com), 2016 (available in French paperback www.scholastic.ca) 2021 TD Book Giveaway
Music in the Sankofa series (Rubicon Publishing), 2015 www.sankofacollection.com
Media in the Sankofa series (Rubicon Publishing), 2015 www.sankofacollection.com
© Nadia L. Hohn, 2023
Toronto, ON, Canada