Black To The Future presents: Genre Marauders

Date: 3/11/23
Speakers: Irenosen Okojie, Tade Thompson, Chella Ramana

We are delighted to be partnering with the British Library and our Vice-Chair, Irenosen Okojie, on this event launching Black To The Future, an Afro-Futurist festival. This flagship event will be a demystification of genre writing across books and games.

Chaired by Irenosen Okojie (Nudibranch), featuring Arthur C Clarke award-winning author Tade Thompson (Rosewater) and Bafta-nominated narrative designer Chella Ramanan (Before I Forget), this panel features writers who work within and across genres and media, from fantasy and science fiction to  crime, across books and games.

The panel will each map out the arc of a recent work, providing insights into why they’re drawn to these genres, while reflecting on their writing processes.
Black To The Future is an Afro-Futurist celebration of outstanding Black artists, a space for visionary imaginings to thrive. It begins as Black History Month ends, with the theme of ‘Black Phantasmagoria’, accompanying Fantasy: Realms of Imagination. A festival founded and directed by Irenosen Okojie in collaboration with the Royal Society of Literature and the British Library, with a focus on invigorating dialogues and genres within which Black literature and art is flourishing.

Irenosen Okojie MBE is an award-winning author who has curated for the Southbank Centre, the BBC, Duckie and programmed the Maverick Women and The Moon strand at Moon Festival featuring Margaret Atwood. She co-presented Turn up for the Books podcast on BBC Sounds with Simon Savidge and Bastille front man, Dan Smith, and judged the 2023 Women’s Prize. She is a Fellow and Vice-Chair of the Royal Society of Literature.
Chella Ramanan is a narrative designer on the writing team for Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora, at Ubisoft Massive in Sweden. She is half of 3-Fold Games, a female game development team from the UK, whose games include the BAFTA-nominated Before I Forget and the upcoming Windrush Tales, a narrative adventure featuring the triumphs and tribulations of two Caribbean immigrants in post-war Britain.

Tade Thompson writes in multiple genres including science fiction, crime, horror, and general fiction. In 2019 he won the Arthur C Clarke award, the UK’s most prestigious prize for science fiction novels, for Rosewater, part of a trilogy that was a finalist for the Hugo award for best series. In addition to novels, he also writes screenplays and short stories. He works as a hospital psychiatrist. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2023.

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