WHY WRITE?: Deon Meyer says the greatest part about being a writer is being read. Picture: MARTIN RHODES
Deon Meyer is passionate about SA and its people and says it’s a fantastic setting for his crime fiction, writes Lauren de Beer.
FOR an international publisher, the decision to take on any author, let alone a South African, is a risk, a leap of faith. In the case of Cape Town-based crime novelist Deon Meyer, the gamble to publish a “totally unknown guy from the bottom end of the Dark Continent” is one that has more than paid dividends for both parties, with the awards his writing has garnered marginally outnumbered only by his sales figures around the world.
The news that his book Thirteen Hours was the top download on Kindle for a week was just reward for an author who gets better with every outing. Trackers (Hodder & Stoughton) is Meyer’s seventh novel and uses, as with his previous works , a South African landscape alive with colour and contrast as its setting. And, as usual, the original was written in Afrikaans (titled Spoor) and translated by Laura Seegers.
“Laura is brilliant and I don’t think she gets enough credit for what she does,” says Meyer. “What she manages to do so well is not to lose the South African flavour, and I think that’s a real art.”
Deon Meyer‘s new Benny Griessel crime thriller 7 DAE (published in Afrikaans by Human & Rousseau, English title 7 DAYS) tops South African charts and TRACKERS, which managed to fend off the likes of Paolo Coelho, James Patterson, and many others, to maintain the Number One spot for eight weeks, is not far behind. TRACKERS was launched in the UK, USA, South Africa and Germany in September and the Sunday Times has tipped it as Meyer’s ‘best work yet’. The German edition, published by Aufbau as ROTE SPUR, has reached Number One on the KrimiZEIT Bestseller lists too.
By Hannah Johnson
AUSTIN: ARGs (alternate reality games) and transmedia have not only extended storytelling beyond the confines of any specific media, but they are also effective techniques for building interest and engagement among fans of a particular movie, television show, book or video game.
Alternate reality games are interactive narratives played out in the real world. They often include puzzles that players must solve using clues gathered from multiple media and real life sources. There are plenty of examples of ARGs in publishing that have served both to enhance a given story, as well as to promote the book and engage readers. Scholastic has done both the 39 Clues series as well as its new game based on Trackers by Patrick Carman. A game based on German bestseller Therapy by Sebastian Fitzek sent players on a global hunt for a missing psychologist.