African romance writers are creating waves from Lagos to Cape Town with a range of books that empower women. Ankara Press books offer readers alternative models of behaviour compared to those of traditional romances, which rely on ideas of male dominance. Cape Town author Amina Thula writes romance novels; she is one of a series of romance writers published by Ankara Press. The imprint aims to give a fresh spin on the genre, with books written by Africans, for Africans. (Image supplied) Priya Pitamber Forget Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey from Fifty Shades of Grey; Sindi Mali and Edward Boateng are steaming up the pages in Africa. Sindi and Edward are the main characters in The Elevator Kiss, written by Cape Town author Amina Thula. As the title suggests, the protagonists meet in a lift during Christmas, and kiss under the mistletoe. It is a kiss that changes both their lives.The Elevator Kiss is part of a group of novels published by the romance imprint Ankara Press; every one of its books is by an African author. Publisher Bibi Bakare-Yusuf first started Cassava Republic Press; a few years later, she started Ankara because “so many people read romance and it is also quite commercially viable”.Bakare-Yusuf said she felt the romance genre was an important vehicle for reconfiguring gender relations. “Not only just configuring gender relations but to show Africans in pursuit of love and erotic desire in a healthy and wholesome way,” she explained. “Romance is a genre that appeals to masses of women – and men – and it is therefore a good place to infuse transformative ideas about romance and desire.”According to the Ankara Press website, the imprint’s mission “is to publish a new kind of romance, in which the thrill of fantasy is alive but realised in a healthier and more grounded way”.No damsel in distress hereThula said most romantic sagas had a female character who, by the end of the story, had undergone a deep inner change. Her story of Sindi and Edward was different, however; it was “a personal journey for both of them and they both grow and change parallel to one another as their tale unfolds”.Edward did not have knight-in-shining-armour syndrome, and Sindi did not need rescuing. “When Edward does something for Sindi, it is normally the result of the situation and is not because he is trying to be her hero,” explained Thula. “Both main characters are well-rounded individuals who can deal with their own personal issues. They would never need a crutch because they are both very capable, have self-awareness and a healthy esteem.”Empower and enlightenThe books brought a fresh perspective compared to the more traditional romance novels. “We want to offer readers alternative models of behaviour from those provided by romances such as Mills and Boon,” explained Bakare-Yusuf. “In the past, romance novels have relied on dangerous notions of male dominance, control and manipulation that can be harmful to women. Many women tolerate abusive situations because they wrongly believe that this is what romance should look like.”She said Ankara’s titles aimed to empower women by showing what a healthy, balanced and passionate relationship could be. “It’s about giving women the permission to create the contours of their own sexual universe by providing them with representations of other women who have done it. And we felt it was equally important to give examples of men who are in touch with their own emotions and who are expressive.”Ankara stories feature young, self-assured and independent women who work, play and, of course, fall madly in love in vibrant African cities from Lagos to Cape Town. Ankara men are confident, emotionally expressive and not afraid of independent and sexually assertive women. “Our sensuous books will challenge romance stereotypes and empower women to love themselves in their search for love, romance and wholesome sex,” reads the website.Thula would also like to transform the romance genre and the portrayal of Africans in literature. “It’s about time we Africans dictated who we are and showed the world there is so much more to us than war, crime, famine and poverty,” she said. “I also think the romance genre has garnered an unfair reputation over the years. If there’s one thing we need more of in this world, it is love. We need to relearn how to love and relate to each other in a healthy and respectful manner.”A worthwhile readAinehi Edoro, writing on the lifestyle and entertainment website Bella Naija, described The Elevator Kiss as an effortless page turner. Sindi was not a typical romance heroine, she wrote. “She is not confused about her worth. She knows she is beautiful and smart. And most of all, she knows her body. She understands her desires and is not afraid or too shy to make a man satisfy them.“For those of us tired of romance stories where the woman has to wait for the man to make every move, Amina Thula has indeed given us a gift.”While reading the book, she also tweeted:Cant sleep. In bed reading Elevator Kiss. What do I think of it? Marvelous! *in bridget jones’ voice.* @jeremyweate pic.twitter.com/XKz2ReQAqT— BRITTLE PAPER (@brittlepaper) December 20, 2014I bought all @ankarapress new offerings because of the splendid covers, brilliant writers and yes I love romantic stories.— Agbonsbobo (@agbonsbobo) January 18, 2015Users who downloaded The Elevator Kiss also left their thoughts on the Ankara website. Lila described the story as “wistful, captivating and totally enthralling”. Another reader who went by the alias DL at first was hesitant to read it because of a disconnect in cultural experiences but “was pleasantly surprised to discover that was not the case”, and applauded the author: “Well done Amina, this was beautiful!”Bakare-Yusuf loved all six titles in the imprint, all for different reasons. “Each book provides a perspective and opportunity to enter into the interior world of the characters and go on a journey with them as they search for love and in the process come to terms with who they are as individuals.” Each book provided an alternative view of femininity and masculinity.Adventure and imaginationWhen Thula was a child, she wanted to become an historian or an archaeologist. “That dream was built on a lust for epic adventures, adrenaline-inducing action and high-level conspiracy and espionage – blame it on Wilbur Smith and Indiana Jones,” she joked. Now she is a student and author, even though she wrote the book with no expectation of it being published. In fact, she was certain Ankara would reject her manuscript.The book began with Thula testing her creativity. “After I finished the first three chapters, I emailed them to a friend who loved them so I decided to finish the story for her – it was going to be a gift for her,” she explained. “It took me almost a year before I sat down and wrote The Elevator Kiss because at first I couldn’t decide what genre to write. One day an innocent chance encounter with a neighbour in an elevator helped me decide on the genre and inspired the main characters’ meeting. The rest of the story flowed out from there on.”The other titles in the romance book series are:• A Tailor-Made Romance, Oyindamola Affinnih• Black Sparkle Romance, Amara Nicole Okolo• A Taste of Love, Sifa Asani Gowon• Love’s Persuasion, Ola Awonubi• Finding Love Again, Chioma Iwunze IbiamLooking to the future“We already have readers asking for more Ankara books, so the challenge is to keep up with them,” said Bakare-Yusuf. The publisher is working on the release of the next six titles, and while Ankara is concentrating on digital sales now, it also hopes to release audio and print books soon.“We are always looking for new authors, so if any readers think they have a romance novel inside them, I would encourage them to read the submission guidelines on our website and get in touch!” You never know, you could create the next Sindi Mali and Edward Boateng.”The e-books are available on the Ankara website.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? 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Here are four diseases that weaken leaders and damage their ability to produce results through others.Inability to Control Your Own State: If you want to prove that you have no real power, lose your temper and fly off the handle. An inability to control your own state is a sign of weakness, not power. The greater your ability to control your own state, especially when you are under pressure, the more powerful you are.Controlling your own state makes you a more compelling, more powerful leader.Inability to Exercise Patience and Tolerance: Losing your patience and demonstrating your intolerance over things that get under your skin is a sign of weakness. A leader holds people to a standard, but the real craft of leading is in how the leader upholds their standard.Patience and tolerance when dealing with people challenges demonstrates a type of caring that makes you easy to follow.Inability to Use Persuasion Over Force: The use of force, or formal authority, is the least effective tool in the leader’s toolbox (even though it is sometimes necessary). Great leaders infuse work with meaning, mission, and values. They use persuasion over force, building their case for a certain outcome, a certain set of behaviors.Inability to Be Compassionate: It’s okay to be a driver. It’s quite necessary that you hold people accountable as a leader. But your hard-charging drive needs to be matched by an equal measure of compassion. People are not a means to an end. They are the end.None of this means you compromise your standard. None of this means you are soft when it comes to protecting what matters. All of these ideas mean that you put people first, that you build them up instead of tearing them down, and that you live the values you want to instill in those you lead.QuestionsHow do you control your own state when you are under pressure? What do you do when you aren’t controlling your state?What do you do to exercise patience when your patience is tested?What causes you to resort to force, or formal, organizational chart authority, over persuasion?Would people use the word compassionate to describe you, even though you are a hard-charging driver? Or would they use some other word?
Colin Cowherd IowaFOX Sports radio show host Colin Cowherd wasn’t very high on Iowa all year – and he made it clear on a weekly basis. Needless to say, after the Hawkeyes were dominated by Stanford in the Rose Bowl contest Friday, Cowherd felt a bit vindicated. He took to Twitter early this morning to playfully ask where all the Iowa fans had gone.Must be a power outage or something in Iowa. Awfully quiet 12 hours after being humiliated.— Colin Cowherd (@ColinCowherd) January 2, 2016Iowa, which won its first 12 games, certainly had a good season, even if it ended on a sour note. Cowherd rubbing it in isn’t really necessary – but hey, that’s what he does.
Japanese shipping company Daitoh Trading has been linked to orders for five chemical/product tankers with compatriot builders.According to data provided by Intermodal, the company has placed an order for three 16,000 dwt vessels with Japan’s Fukuoka Shipbuilding, and for an additional two units with the shipbuilder’s subsidiary Usuki Shipyard.The three tankers are scheduled for delivery during the period from 2020 to 2021, while the two units from Usuki Shipyard would join their owner in 2019.The company did not unveil any financial details related to the tankers, which will feature 16,000 dwt, respectively.World Maritime News Staff
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Monday granted bail to AAP MLA Som Dutt, who was recently taken into custody to serve a six-month jail term for assaulting a man with a baseball bat during campaigning for 2015 Assembly elections. Justice Suresh Kait also sought response of the State on the plea of Dutt, lodged in Rohini jail here, challenging the trial court’s verdict convicting and sentencing him in the case. The high court listed the matter for hearing on October 30. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder Senior advocate Vikas Pahwa and lawyer R Arunadhri Iyer contended that the entire case against the legislator is “false” and there are “discrepancies” in the medical record of the man who had claimed that he was assaulted by the MLA. A sessions court had on September 12 dismissed the AAP leader’s plea challenging a magisterial court’s order convicting and sentencing him in the case. The sessions court had said there was no sufficient ground to interfere with the order of the magisterial court. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchings The magisterial court had on July 4 sentenced Dutt to a six-month jail term and also imposed a fine of Rs two lakh on him. He is a public representative and has committed the offence knowing its gravity and consequences, the trial court had said. It had noted that the incident did not take place on the spur of the moment but was a premeditated assault by a baseball bat. The court had granted him bail on a personal bond and surety of Rs 10,000 till August 5, 2019 for appealing against the conviction. Dutt, the legislator from the Sadar Bazar constituency, was held guilty under sections 325 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt without provocation), 341 (wrongful restraint), 147 (rioting) and 149 (unlawful assembly ) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The trial court while convicting him had said there was no doubt that on January 10, 2015 at around 8 pm, Som Dutt, along with his 50 supporters, went to flat No. 13 where the complainant was present. The complainant was beaten and assaulted by the accused and his associates due to which he suffered grievous injury, it had said. An FIR was lodged against Dutt in 2015 at the Gulabi Bagh police station in north Delhi that he had allegedly hit the complainant on his legs with a baseball bat and his supporters dragged him out on the road and started beating him, causing grievous injury.
CALGARY – The Canadian government is trying to reassure Japan and other trading partners that genetically modified wheat found in southern Alberta is limited to a few plants growing along a remote access road and has not been detected in the wider supply.Japan has temporarily halted imports of Canadian wheat as it reviews the tests that Canadian officials have already done, Global Affairs spokesman Jesse Wilson said in a statement.“The government of Canada is working with its key trading partners to ensure they have all the necessary information and are relying on science-based evidence to limit market disruption,” he wrote Friday.The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said Thursday that it tested wheat plants that survived spraying for weeds and found they were genetically modified to tolerate herbicide.The agency said extensive scientific testing has found the wheat is isolated to the site where it was found and poses no food safety risk.Such modified wheat is not approved for commercial use in Canada.“Temporary market closure is a standard protocol for the Japanese,” Wilson said.“CFIA officials are already in close contact to share data, review evidence and demonstrate full transparency, which is exactly as it should be when it comes to keeping trade open.”The Japanese embassy in Ottawa said Friday the country’s ministry of agriculture, forestry and fisheries temporarily suspended the import tender and sale of Canadian wheat to domestic milling companies in response to the CFIA’s announcement.“The embassy understands that the details with regard to this issue are being worked out between the competent authorities of the two countries,” it said.The Alberta government said the dozen genetically modified red spring wheat plants were found last fall in a roadside ditch near Strathmore, east of Calgary.“We’re disappointed with Japan’s decision to suspend the trade of Canadian wheat, and we are working to provide them with the assurances they need to reopen markets,” Economic Development Minister Deron Bilous said Friday.Alberta’s wheat exports totalled $2.1 billion last year. The top two buyers are the United States, at $280 million a year, followed by Japan at $203 million.Bilous said the United States has not contacted Canada to express concern but said the province is reaching out to its trading partners regardless.Kevin Bender, chairman of the Alberta Wheat Commission, said Japan’s move is concerning.“If they stop importing our grain, that’s a major blow to our exports of wheat,” he said.“My hope is that it would be short-lived based on, first of all, Canada’s reputation as a high-quality producer of wheat and food, our safety record, the fact that this is an isolated event.”Japan imported 1.4 million tonnes of wheat from Canada last year and 1.6 million tonnes the year before, said Cam Dahl, president of Cereals Canada.“Japan is a very good customer,” he said. “More than that, they are a premium customer. They are the highest grade buyer of Canadian wheat in the world.”Both Bender and Dahl said there has been no indication other countries are contemplating similar moves.“I am watching Korea very closely as well as China and the EU,” said Dahl.The CFIA said it isn’t sure how the modified wheat came to be on the access road.That’s worrisome to the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network, a coalition of 16 farming, environmental and social justice groups focused on genetic engineering in food.“We’re relieved this is an isolated contamination case but we’re concerned that the government couldn’t determine how it happened,” said Lucy Sharratt, a co-ordinator with the network. “Without knowing the cause, contamination could happen again.”The CFIA said it will work with the landowner to monitor the area over the next three years to help prevent any genetically modified wheat from persisting.— with files from Dean Bennett in Edmonton
Greater Noida: Gautam Buddh Nagar police, on Tuesday, arrested two more persons who were accused of thrashing a 25-years-old woman, working at a unisex salon in Greater Noida. The woman was allegedly thrashed by a group of men, including the owner of salon, after she demanded her salary.According to police, the arrested persons were identified as Sohail, a native of sector 12 area of Noida and Shera, a native of Hapur. Police have already arrested the owner of Salon, Wasim, on Monday. Arvind Kumar Pathak, Station House Officer, of Knowledge Park police station told Millennium Post that Sohail is the real brother of salon owner Wasim while Shera works at the salon. “Following the incident, police had registered an FIR against unknown persons on the basis of complaint received from the victim. Police identified the accused in the case through the video of incident which was shot by one of the onlookers. The two accused who were nabbed by police on Tuesday were arrested from Ishaan college cut in Greater Noida,” said Pathak. The officer further said that one more accused had also been seen thrashing the woman and police are making efforts to nab him as well. “Police have arrested three persons in the case while the fourth accused is absconding and we are making efforts to trace him as well. Meanwhile, the group of men who were seen thrashing the woman in the video include the owner of salon, Wasim, who thrashed the girl using stick and dragged her with hairs,” added Pathak. The incident occurred on Saturday morning in Kaushalya residency area of Knowledge park. The victim, a resident of Phase-II area of Noida, who had been working at Venus Unisex salon from past the two months was brutally thrashed in front of a crowd while a video of the whole incident was captured by an onlooker which went viral.
Former England U-21 international Callum Wilson insists he’s confident about shining for the senior national team ahead of his potential debut on Thursday night.The Bournemouth striker was called up to Gareth Southgate’s latest squad after his impressive goalscoring run his club and could feature when the United States men’s national team come to Wembley.“He gave me an opportunity at that level, a lot has happened since then and I think as you get older you appreciate more getting recognition for England,” Wilson said, according to Sports Mole.“When I was younger, got called up for the Under-21s, a lot of players in that squad were playing in the Premier League and I was in the Championship at the time.”Eddie Howe pleased with attacking poise, but feels Wilson was too honest Stuart Heath – August 25, 2019 A.F.C Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe felt as though his striker Callum Wilson was too honest against Manchester City and may have won a penalty,…“You felt like you’re here and they are there sort of thing.”“I suppose I didn’t appreciate it, I didn’t feel like I was meant to be there then whereas now I think my performances in the Premier League have shown that I am able to be here.”The former Coventry City striker also revealed the commitment it took to get from recovering from two long-term injuries to the brink of representing his country.“I actually missed the birth of my second child being out (of the country) doing rehab, so that’s the sort of sacrifices I made to get to this point,” Wilson said.
Related Items: SUNRISE: 7:01AMSUNSET: 6:58PMLOW TIDE: 9:14AM &10:10PM HIGH TIDE: 3:29PM & 4:05AM SATMOONRISE: 2:58PMMOONSET: 2:08 AM SATEXTENDED FORECAST: A SURFACE LOW PRESSURE MAY DEVELOP BETWEEN THE WESTERN BAHAMAS AND FLORIDA EARLY THIS WEEKEND, POSSIBLY BECOMING A TROPICAL CYCLONE. THE LOW WILL DRIFT NORTHEAST THROUGH SATURDAY EVENING, SHIFTING BACK TO THE SOUTHWEST TO WEST THROUGH SUNDAY. HIGH TEMPERATURE TODAY 90 °F 32 °C LOW TEMPERATURE TONIGHT 77 °F 25 °C Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Bahamas, September 29, 2017 – Nassau – 6:00 AM FORECAST FOR TODAY AND TONIGHT, FRIDAY 29TH SEPTEMBER, 2017, ISSUED BY THE BAHAMAS DEPARTMENT OF METEOROLOGY. GENERAL SITUATION: THE INTERACTION OF AN UPPER LEVEL LOW OVER THE EASTERN GULF OF MEXICO AND A BROAD SURFACE TROUGH OVER THE NORTHWESTERN CARIBBEAN CONTINUES TO PULL PLUMES OF DEEP TROPICAL MOISTURE ACROSS AREA, PRODUCING PERIODS OF UNSETTLED WEATHER TODAY.SPECIAL WARNINGS: BOATERS SHOULD EXERCISE CAUTION DUE TO MODERATE NORTHEASTERLY SWELLS AND ALONG WITH THE POTENTIAL OF WATERSPOUTS… & BEACHGOERS SHOULD REMAIN ALERT DUE TO THE RISK OF RIP CURRENTS ALONG NORTH AND EAST COAST BEACHES…NORTHWEST AND CENTRAL BAHAMASWEATHER: PARTLY TO MOSTLY CLOUDY, WARM AND HUMID WITH SCATTERED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS.ADVISORY: GUSTY WINDS AND HIGHER SEAS CAN BE EXPECTED IN SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS.WINDS: SOUTHEAST TO SOUTH AT 15 KNOTS OVER OPEN WATERS IN THE NORTHWEST BAHAMAS & 10 TO 15 KNOTS IN THE CENTRAL BAHAMASSEAS: 3 TO 5 FEET OVER THE OCEAN WITH SOME MODERATE NORTHEASTERLY SWELLS IN THE NORTHWEST BAHAMAS AND 2 TO 4 FEET IN THE CENTRAL BAHAMAS. TROPICAL WEATHER OUTLOOK: A large area of cloudiness and showers extending from theNorthwestern Caribbean Sea northward across Cuba to southern Florida and the northwestern Bahamas is associated with a broad surface trough interacting with an upper-level low. A weak area of low pressure is likely to form from this weather system later today and move northward near the east coast of the Florida peninsula through Saturday. Environmental conditions appear conducive for some development of this system during the next couple of days, before upper-level winds become less favorable Saturday night or Sunday. Regardless of development, this system is likely to produce locally heavy rainfall over portions of central and western Cuba, the Florida Keys, the Florida peninsula, and the northwestern Bahamas during the next several days.FORECASTER: K. WARD-FORBES/vdPhoto: Acklins Island, Bahamas FORECAST FOR SUNDAYWEATHER: PARTLY CLOUDY, WARM AND HUMID WITH ISOLATED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMSWINDS: EASTERLY AT 15 TO 20 KNOTS.SEAS: 4 TO 6 FEET OVER THE OCEAN SOUTHEAST BAHAMASWEATHER: PARTLY CLOUDY AND HOT WITH ISOLATED SHOWERS AND A FEW THUNDERSTORMS.ADVISORY: A SMALL CRAFT CAUTION IS IN EFFECT.…GUSTY WINDS AND HIGHER SEAS CAN BE EXPECTED IN SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS…WINDS: EAST TO SOUTHEAST AT 15 TO 20 KNOTS OVER OPEN WATERS.SEAS: 4 TO 6 FEET OVER OPEN WATERS. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp FORECAST FOR SATURDAY WEATHER: PARTLY CLOUDY, WARM AND HUMID WITH ISOLATED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMSWINDS: SOUTHEAST TO SOUTH AT 10 TO 15 KNOTS IN THE NORTHWEST & CENTRAL BAHAMAS…& 15 TO 20 KNOTS IN THE SOUTHEAST BAHAMASSEAS: 2 TO 4 FEET IN THE NORTHWEST & CENTRAL BAHAMAS…4 TO 6 FEET IN THE SOUTHEAST BAHAMAS.