24 Friday, April 27 2018 | NEW ERA entertainment LITERATURE Lack of publishers, finances hampers Namibian writers • Clemans Miyanicwe Sitting for days and months to write books is not a major headache for Namibian writers but lack of publishing houses and financing is a big hurdle. Simson Mario Ochurub, author of an inspirational book distributed freely in PDF format, Your Plan vs Your Life, says writers he meets complain about lack of publishing houses. “There are few publishing entities in Namibia but that makes it difficult for writers to weigh their options that they are offered percentage per book sold,” Ochurub says. Author of Reflections on Modern Damara History, Seth Boois, says financing is a hurdle to overcome as it can hamper research (travelling) and actual publishing as well as proof reading, editing and printing. “This (financing) is perhaps the most difficult part because it involves the finalisation of the whole process and putting the final product on the table so to speak,” says Boois. The author of also Blood Diamonds as well as Taxi in Windhoek says the other big challenge writers have to overcome is possible rejection or even ridicule by publishers. “The topic for the book itself is a challenge because it must be chosen so as to give the writer a wider scope and enough material to present wider information,” advises Boois. The 27-year-old Ochurub who is currently busy with his second book titled Being a Young Entrepreneur in Modern Namibia, says he does not have sponsorship for it to publish it, which shows that financing is a stumbling block for writers in Namibia. “Writing cost me nothing. It’s the quote that is my headache,” Ochurub says. However, this is no dumber passion for writing. Since Simson Mario Ochurub Reflections on Modern Damara History is self published, the marketing, advertising and selling is a huge cumbersome process and takes time to measure the rate of success thereof according to Boois. “The number of copies printed depends entirely about what the authors want and in case of a public publisher like Unam, Edumeds and McMillan it depends on them,” Boois says. Public publishers can take over the publishing process but the writer only receives 12 % of the proceeds from the book because of all the risk involved. Thus a private publisher like Boois is saddled with all the risk like the possibility of failing to obtain adequate return on the investment but of only break even. Boois decided to publish the book himself with the assistance of Gaob //Garoeb Foundation even though Unam Press was interested to take over as a publisher. On exposure which Ochurub cites as another obstacle, he says he has a Whatsapp group and uses print media for his work to be known. Other obstacle for writers is the small size of the Namibian readers’ market. Boois advises aspiring writers that if they are into writing to make money, then they must forget it. Ochurub says Seth Boois that one must study the market as the country has a poor market for readers as Namibians are lazy readers. Despite the challenges, Boois describes writing as source of self actualisation and about sharing information as well as managing knowledge to inform the world about what is hidden. Ochurub says if it’s a true calling it is something one must enjoys. If given a one-on-one opportunity with a chief executive officer or head of a publishing company, Ochurub says he will ask for a generous discount and that as the last agents of the creation of books for them to look into giving sponsorships or scholarships to language faculties. 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Inside Youth ministry’s budget cut upsets entrepreneurial initiatives Page 32 This news is your business Skorpion Zinc posts steady profits over last two years •Edgar Brandt Windhoek - Skorpion Zinc Mine in southern Namibia, owned by Vedanta Resources, has managed to record a profit of N billion for each of the last two financial years. General Manager of the mine, Irvinne Simataa, revealed this to New Era yesterday on the side-lines of the Mining Expo and Conference. This year, Skorpion, which is the eighth largest zinc mine in the world and one of the world’s most important sources of high quality zinc, is expected to produce approximately 90,000 tonnes of zinc, which is anticipated to reach approximately 130,000 tonnes by 2020. During an exclusive interview yesterday, Simataa noted that the relationship with mining contractor, Basil Read, which was appointed last year to take over selected production functions, is working well and that labour relations are relatively stable. The mine employs about 1,500 people – 800 employed directly and 700 employed as contractors. Close to 96 percent of all employees at the mine are Namibian. Officially, Skorpion’s mining activities closed down at the end of March 2018 for the mine to undergo scheduled maintenance but Simataa said this would have no impact on expected production for the year. He noted that, in fact, Skorpion’s overall production for 2018 would be on par with 2017 at about 90,000 tonnes. The mine’s activities, which comprised of an open pit mine and refinery, are expected to run to at least 2021 after it recently invested US0 million to extend the lifespan when all initial business models suggested that it would be closed in 2015 already. In addition, during the last two years, the mine invested N0 million strictly for the maintenance of its production and refinery plant. The expansion (mining waste rock and expanding the open pit) looks to maximise the potential of what is widely regarded as one of the industry’s finest examples of zinc ore. Skorpion’s supergene zinc ore body is composed of alluvial accumulations of zinc carbonate and detrital silicate materials deposited within a paleochannel, making it a rare and sought-after deposit. Owners of Skorpion Zinc, Vedanta Resources, acquired the mine from Anglo American in 2010 for US7 million in a deal that placed Vedanta among the most prolific global producers of zinc. The Skorpion Zinc Mine, which is the only integrated zinc mine and refinery in Africa that fully beneficiates its natural resource from ore to zinc metal, has ramped up its mining activities and upgraded its plant and equipment to produce more zinc on an annual basis. Further commenting on the expected lifespan of the mine, Simataa noted that operations could extend beyond 2021 and also did not rule out the possibility of transforming the mining from the current openpit method to go underground. “Our (exploration) drilling efforts have increased two-fold. Within the next 12 to 15 months, we will know if there is merit to go underground,” Simataa revealed during an interview towards the end of last year. General Manager of the Skorpion Zinc Mine Irvinne Simataa Scenes from the 2018 Mining Expo and Conference The 2018 Mining Expo and Conference, which took place this week at the Windhoek Showgrounds, under the theme “Maximising the multiplier effect from Namibia’s mining sector” was once again hosted by the Chamber of Mines of Namibia. Numerous mining companies and suppliers to the industry participated in the exhibitions and conferences at the event. Representing the Jeweller’s Association of Namibia at the Mining Expo were (from left) Andrea Dekant (Canto Goldsmith & Jewellers), Amanda Siseho (Adrian Meyer Jewellers) and Andrea Bahr (Canto Goldsmith & Jewellers). Kabuba Namukokoba (left) watches as her colleague Himeezembi Hengari from the Namibia University of Science and Technology’s Mining and Process Engineering Department inspects the structure of metals through a microscope. From left: Nella Zamuee, Alina Nelenge and Jennifer Nehoya in attendance at the Namdeb stand The University of Namibia also exhibited at the Mining Expo with (from left) Shoopala Uugulu (Geology Dept), Tuyenikelao Nekwaya (Mining Engineering) and Thomas Alweendo (Metallurgical Engineering) manning the stand. Law enforcement agents were on full alert to protect the valuable minerals at the expo, particularly within the diamond hub where all the diamond companies exhibited. Some of the officers on duty from regional operations were (from left) Cleofas Job, Delia Vallentyn, Libertine Umati and Janine Scott. Photos: Strauss Lunyangwe