Derby Book Festival 2019: British Asian Writing

The fifth edition of the Derby Book Festival (DBF) kicks off from May 31, 2019, with a fantastic programme. DESIblitz previews the British Asian strand.

Derby Book Festival 2019: British Asian Writing f

“You’ll find an array of events including talks, readings, dance and theatre"

Marking its fifth anniversary, the prestigious Derby Book Festival (DBF) takes place from 31 May to June 8, 2019.

Since the inaugural event, the festival has seen continuous development and growth.

2019 is no different, as there will be a special British Asian strand courtesy of the multiple award-winning online lifestyle publication, DESIblitz.

The term ‘DESI’ means ‘roots’ deriving as a collecting word to reflect the culture of South Asia. This term relates particularly to India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

Audiences can expect to witness some fantastic poetry, along with an award-winning author taking readers on a very interesting journey.

DESIblitz will also be conducting an insightful journalism workshop.

Here is the full programme of the British Asian strand as part of DBF 2019.

Poetry with Rupinder Kaur and Nafeesa Hamid

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On Monday, June 3, 2019, Riverside Library will host an evening of poetry with Rupinder Kaur and Nafeesa Hamid between 6:3o-7:30 pm

Publishing her first collection Rooh in 2018, Rupinder Kaur is a Birmingham born poet of Punjabi descent.

Rooh is a poetic voyage that exceeds borders and discretionary boundaries. Her writings reflect English and Punjabi culture.

Questioning conventional views, especially in relation to gender roles, the poems of Rupinder reflect love, identity, history, society and taboo.

Rupinder believes when it comes to writing or art, one should be free to express themselves and there should be no restriction for an artist.

Birmingham based Nafeesa Hamid is a British poet-playwright and spoken word artist of Pakistani descent.

Using personal experiences to base her writing, the work of Nafeesa highlight taboo topics such as sex, domestic violence and mental health.

Verve Poetry Press (2018) were the publishers of her first poetry collection ‘Besharam’ (shameless).

She is a contributor to the 2017 anthology, “The Things I Would Tell You: British Muslim Women Write’, edited by Sabrina Mahfouz.

After studying in Derby, Nafessa became part of the Mouthy Poets collective in Nottingham.

Alumni of Derby Theatre Graduate Associate Artists, Nafeesa is the founder of Twisted Tongues, a monthly Derby open mic night.

Nafeesa also made it to the finals of the 2018 BBC Edinburgh Fringe Slam.

Fans who enjoy poetry can attend this event and book here.

Vaseem Khan

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Crime book author, Vaseem Khan will also take centre stage as part of the British Asian writing strand.

The event focusing on his book, Murder at the Grand Raj Palace (2017) will take place at 6:00 pm on Tuesday, June 4, 2019.

From the days of the raj to contemporary India, Vaseem will take readers on a dynamic, colourful and historical journey.

He will also be answering the fascinating question: how do you fit an elephant into a crime story?

His debut book was The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra (2015). It is a Times best-selling book and a Waterstones Paperback of the Year.

To book tickets for this event, please check here.

Journalism Workshop

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A member of the editorial team from DESIblitz will conduct a journalism workshop at Quad Derby. This will take place on Saturday, June 8, 2019, between 2:00-5:00 pm.

Participants will get to learn how to develop ideas and sources, research and plan a story, structuring and producing a fantastic article for a publication.

Specific topics covered will include news, features, power of images, videos and audio, personal profiles and interviewing tips.

DESIblitz, an Aidem Digital online publication is the only social enterprise project of its kind which offers true ‘hands-on’ experience.

As a publication, the ethos of DESIblitz is to provide a distinct media platform for aspiring writers, and journalists, to gain valuable work experience for their careers or boost their self-esteem and ability.

A key achievement of DESIblitz is the development of an Online Writing and Mentoring Programme to help young people develop digital content skills for the 21st century.

With digital content being the future, DESIblitz is a forward-thinking organisation which prides itself on quality.

This is something that is instilled in every person learning and developing with DESIblitz.

To find out more about the writer’s workshop, please check here.

South Asian Writers

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As part of DBF, there will be further South Asian writers showcasing their work. To commemorate D-Day, a special event will take place at Derby Theatre on Thursday, June 6, 2019.

Author Bali Rai will be reflecting on his war story Now or Never, a Dunkirk Story (Voices # 1: 2019). The adventurous book is about Private Fazal Khan, a young Indian soldier who takes the battlefields of the Second World War.

Furthermore, crime authors AA Dhand, Mark Billingham and Fran Dorricott will have a very intriguing discussion about the modern crime novel. The topics they will discuss include the best-selling perspective, midlist-titles, publishing and lots more.

Growing up in Yorkshire, the diverse history and darkness of Bradford city inspired AA Dhand to write his celebrated Harry Virdee novels.

It’s a Crime will take place on Sunday, June 8, 2019, at Déda Derby.

DBF 2019 has an exciting programme line up. Liz Fothergill CBE, Chair of Derby Book Festival, shedding light on this says:

“This year’s programme is in genre order, giving you the chance to find your favourites and discover something new!

“You’ll find an array of events including talks, readings, dance and theatre as well as some of the most acclaimed and exciting contemporary authors.”

For further information about the 2019 Derby Book Festival and to book event tickets please check here.

Faisal has creative experience in the fusion of media and communication and research which increase awareness of global issues in post-conflict, emerging and democratic societies. His life motto is: "persevere, for success is near..."

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