Celebrating Literature: Writing Competition
January 29, 2024
Literature is an often underestimated, yet crucial, component of language studies. Recognizing the struggles that students face with this aspect, SANTS embarked on a journey to kindle the flame of writing. The result? A captivating story-writing competition that not only addresses the challenges students encounter but also aims to empower aspiring Afrikaans authors.

The genesis of this initiative was a fusion of pedagogical concern and a genuine love for literature. The primary objective was clear – identify and empower local emerging Afrikaans authors capable of producing high-standard stories suitable for South African school curricula. Divided into two categories, Youth Literature and Children’s Literature, participants underwent a rigorous writing process.

Not every writer persevered through the challenges of the creative journey, but six finalists emerged triumphant, showcasing their literary competence. The talented wordsmiths who stood out:

Jeanette Botto with “Miemmie die Marmotjie gaan kerk toe.”
Susanna van Rooyen with the intriguing “Die Maan is van kaas gemaak.”
Christa Groenewald, with “Kwaai Kallie Krimpvarkie.”
Zenobia Stride, enchanting readers with “Die opwagting van Zano se baba boetie.”
Jenica Simpson with “Bennie Boksteen Bou ‘n Muur.”
Nadene Venter, spinning a tale of wisdom with “Mnr Wuys se sprokies van wysheid.”
The competition, initiated in April 2023, culminated in the announcement of the winners. In the Children’s Literature category, Christa Groenewald took the prize with her enthralling narrative, “Kwaai Kallie Krimpvarkie.” The story invites readers on a vibrant journey through the rainbow forest, where diversity is celebrated, and inclusion is the norm. It teaches us that with good intentions and a pure heart, one can triumph over any fear when making new friends.

In the Youth Literature category, Nadene Venter claimed victory with “Mnr Wuys se Sprokies van Wysheid.” This creative tale explores alternative ways of reading books, demonstrating how literature can unite even the most challenging communities. From tackling illiteracy to fighting zombies, Venter’s narrative is a must-read masterpiece.

The success of the competition has paved the way for future endeavours. In 2024, SANTS plans to expand the competition’s scope to include English, isiZulu, isiXhosa, Sepedi and Setswana, inviting participants to enrol and experience the joy of storytelling. Expert guidance in the art of story writing and the incorporation of illustrative concepts into the narratives will enhance the competition’s educational value.

As the academic community eagerly anticipates the continuation of this literary journey in 2024, SANTS remains committed to fostering a love for literature and nurturing the voices of tomorrow’s storytellers.

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