Khanya Mtshali

  • interviews September 15, 2016

    Bookforum talks with Lidudumalingani Mqombothi

    Khanya Mtshali talks to Lidudumalingani Mqombothi, author of the Caine Prize-winning short story "Memories We Lost," about the influence of literary prizes, representing mental illness on the page, and the similarities between filmmaking and story writing.

    When Lidudumalingani Mqombothi (he coolly goes by his first name) sat down to write "Memories We Lost," the short story that won him the 2016 Caine Prize for African Writing, he’d finished film school having felt frustrated at the lack of creative freedom on which film schools tend to pride themselves. The story, which he previously sought to turn into a film, concerns two teenage sisters, the younger of whom battles an unnamed mental illness in a community that seeks to cure her through traditional means. The older sister attempts to protect her sister from her illness and her community while