So I’ve been sitting on this piece of news for more than a year but now I can announce it. Along with Lorena Sosa, I am editing a collection of short stories and artwork for the Bantuan Coffee Foundation. As I’ve posted elsewhere on this site, Bantuan was started by my good friend Robert Porter with the aim of providing education scholarships and safe houses to the victims of child prostitution in Indonesia. Their main revenue stream comes from the sales of native Wild Kopi Luwak coffee but Robert and I were kicking around ideas to further raise money and the foundation’s profile and thus In The Empty Places was born.
Along with Lorena and Tatiana Galvis, our designer, we have spent the last year collecting stories and artwork from around the world, many of which have been translated into English for the first time. The book will be published in November as an ebook and limited print run. We are planning a launch party in The Netherlands (where Robert, Lorena and Tatiana are based) and over the weeks and months between now and then we will be announcing the names of the wonderful and generous writers, artists and translators who have contributed.
We begin this week with Rodrigo Hasbún. A full biography and list of publications is available on our website. I’m particularly excited about Rodrigo Hasbún. His story, In The City has never appeared in English before (it was translated by Julie Armstrong whose bio is also on the website) and Rodrigo was one of Granta’s Best Young Spanish Language Novelists in 2010.
You can find out more about In The Empty Places at:
Twitter: @intheemptyplace and @bantuancoffee