Black To The Future presents: Genre Marauders

Black to the future
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  • Tel: +44 (0)1937 546546
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  • From £15 – £28 Concessions available

A demystification of genre writing across books and games, launching Black To The Future, an Afro-Futurist festival.

This event takes place in the British Library and will be simultaneously live streamed on the British Library platform. Tickets may be booked either to attend in person, or to watch on our platform (online) either live or within 48 hours on catch up. Viewing links will be sent out shortly before the event.

A panel event chaired by Irenosen Okojie MBE (Nudibranch), featuring Arthur C Clarke, award-winning author Tade Thompson (Rosewater) and BAFTA-nominated narrative designer Chella Ramanan (Before I Forget), and Rivers Solomon (The Deep), who write within and across genres (fantasy, science fiction, crime, historical) and media (books, films 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 demystifying their writing processes. 

Solomon’s award-winning novella The Deep is based on the song of the same name by hip-hop group The Clipping, which in turn is homage to electronic music duo Drexciya and their mythos about an Afrofuturistic underwater utopia. 

The event is followed the same evening by Late at the Library: Drexciyan Realms, featuring Dopplereffekt live, and entry to the British Library exhibition Fantasy: Realms of Imagination. Tickets may be purchased to include entry to the Late at the Library, or just for the Genre Marauders event. 

Doors and Bar open at 18:00. 

Half price tickets available for British Library Members, students, under 26s and other concession groups. 

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 MBE 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.
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. 

Rivers Solomon writes about life in the margins, where they are much at home. In addition to appearing on the Stonewall Honor List and winning a Firecracker Award, Solomon's debut novel An Unkindness of Ghosts was a finalist for a Lambda, a Hurston/Wright, and a Locus award. Solomon's second book, The Deep, was the winner of the 2020 Lambda Award and shortlisted for many others including the British Fantasy and World Fantasy awards, and Sorrowland, Solomon's most recent novel, was awarded an Otherwise Award. Their short work appears in Black Warrior Review, The New York Times, The New York Times Magazine, Guernica, Best American Short Stories,, Best American Horror and Dark Fantasy, and elsewhere.

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.

In association with the Royal Society of Literature

Royal society of literature logo

This event accompanies our exhibition Fantasy: Realms of Imagination, supported by:

Wayland Games   

If you’re attending in person, please arrive no later than 15 minutes before the start time of this event.

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Name: Black To The Future presents: Genre Marauders
Where: Pigott Theatre
The Knowledge Centre
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Show Map      How to get to the Library
When: -
Price: From £15 – £28
Concessions available
Enquiries: +44 (0)1937 546546
Book now

* Please note that there is a £1.50 transaction fee when tickets are posted, or for telephone sales when an e-ticket is requested.