NOW here’s a nice diversion for a lazy Sunday – a browse through the expanding book list of Pukpuk Publishing, the publications arm of the Crocodile Prize Organisation, which now offers 20 titles with three more on the way.
You can download the full six-page list below. It contains a synopsis of each publication and tells you how to get hold of them.
Buy all 23 and you’ll have a tremendous library of contemporary Papua New Guinean writing.
The list truly signifies the Great Revival (Bigpela Stretim) of PNG literature, which had fallen into a long fallow and unproductive period after the creative dynamism inspired by PNG’s independence in 1975.
As you leaf through the list of titles, you may also like to reflect on the Crocodile Prize itself as well as the annual literary event it has generated (this year to be held in Simbu), the writing workshops and the little-known scheme we’ve established in which Australian writers mentor PNG authors as they work their way through the creative process.
All spin-offs from the Crocodile Prize and all the result of unpaid effort.
It’s worth noting that this successful project is the offspring of joint PNG-Australia enterprise officially snubbed by the Australian High Commission in PNG, possibly because it felt unable to exercise control over the venture.
It was the same for Buk bilong Pikinini, recipient of hundreds of thousands of Australian aid dollars and apparently deep in the thrall of the High Commission.
BBP sponsored last year’s Writing for Children Award but, like the High Commission, suddenly disappeared from view – no communication, no explanation, just sullen silence. Charming.
Given these antics, we’re grateful to have the financial backing of public-spirited entities like the Paga Hill Development Company, the PNG Association of Australia, the PNG Ministry of Tourism, Arts & Culture and the many other corporate and private sponsors who understand and support what this project seeks to achieve.
Which is to encourage and assist PNG writers to write and to publish their writing so PNG readers can access their own written literature, without which - in this modern age - there is cultural and social impoverishment.
That’s why we’re proud of the Pukpuk Publishing book list. It is a tangible representation of what has been achieved, not by an unwieldy and ill-targeted aid program but by a PNG-Australia consortium using its own resources freely provided.
By the way, the Crocodile Prize now has just one month to go before the deadline for entries is reached on Tuesday 30 June.
Time for Papua New Guinean authors, poets, illustrators, essayists and story tellers to get those entries away.
We also open our annual reader appeal for donations to help us deliver free copies of the Crocodile Prize Anthology 2015 to schools and libraries throughout Papua New Guinea.
Donations of any amount are welcome. Send them to....
The Crocodile Prize
National Australia Bank
And send an email here to let us know of your support.