MARJORIE VAN HEERDEN’s 2012 - (Children’s Book Writer and Illustrator - Co-RA SCBWI (South Africa))
2012 was a very busy year for Marjorie. The year started with her finishing the illustrations for two picture books she had started in 2011;
Numbers Do and Ears Hear, written for the Chinese Market by Kathleen Ahrens (SCBWI RA Chairperson) and Chu-Ren Huang - published by Sun Ya Publications (Hong Kong). Both books were released in May 2012, in time to be launched at the AFCC (Asian Festival of Children’s Content) in Singapore. She contributed a chapter on Children’s Book Illustration for an academic volume, Die Afrikaanse Skryfgids (The Afrikaans Writers’ Guide), compiled by Riana Scheepers and Leti Kleyn and published by Penguin.
Her chapter, Daai deurmekaar, ongepoetste tuin, is on page 143. (The title of the chapter refers to Joseph Schwarcz's comment, “Do not let us treat children’s literature as a well-kept garden, thus robbing it of it’s nature as a windswept field.”)
She completed the illustrations for Sam - ’n Ware Verhaal van ’n Dogtertjie en haar Olifant (Sam – A True Story of a Girl and her Elephant), a Dutch children’s book written by Ingrid Vander Veken and translated into Afrikaans by Antjie Krog - published by Lapa Publishers (SA).
Then she illustrated four stories for the two Storieman books published by Human and Rousseau in the second half of the year. Truly a very busy 2012...
A real highlight of the year for Marjorie was to be invited as a guest speaker to the 2012 AFCC conference in Singapore. She did two presentations: How Illustrations in Children's Books Provide Context for Understanding Stories and Challenges in Developing Countries for Picture Book Authors and Illustrators. She also facilitated a day of master classes for children’s book illustrators and writer/illustrators.
Another highlight was in June, when Marjorie and author Alex D’Angelo won the M.E.R. Award (one of the Media24 Books Literary Awards) for the best illustrated children’s book published in South African during the previous year (2011) – they won for Goblin Diaries: Apprenticed to the Red Witch, published by Tafelberg Publishers (SA). This was the second time she has been awarded this prestigious award, the first time was in 2008 when the award went to Marjorie van Heerden (illustrator) and Wendy Hartmann (author) for Nina and Little Duck, published in 2007 by Human & Rousseau (SA).
In October Marjorie, as Co-RA for SCBWI (SA), hosted a retreat under the title The Fundamentals of Characterisation, at Fynbos Estate, an hour’s drive from Cape Town. The SCBWI (SA) invited Doug Cushman, an American writer/illustrator who lives and works in France, to facilitate the retreat together with Marjorie.
As usual, Marjorie was a guest lecturer at various schools, colleges and libraries during the year; She again lectured at a writing school facilitated by the ATKV (Afrikaans Language and Culture Society) in April in Gauteng, and in September, for the fourth consecutive year, she facilitated a week-long children’s book illustration course as part of the Centre for Comic, Illustrative and Book Arts (CCIBA) at the Department of Visual Arts at Stellenbosch University. In December she lectured at a refresher course for librarians offered by the University of the Western Cape.
Before the end of 2012 Marjorie started her next project, illustrating a children’s picture book commissioned by a publisher in Malaysia, to be published in 2013.