TWF 2024

Meet the Authors

Our talented writers are scheduled to participate in our panels, workshops, and a variety of other exciting activities.
Each author brings a unique voice and perspective to our event, enriching the festival with their diverse experiences and insights.

Lisa Bent

Lisa Bent is a writer of Jamaican descent from South London. Her debut novel, Symona’s Still Single is a genre-bending romance novel that can also sit in the self-help section. Published in October 2020. Lisa is part of the groundbreaking #Twentyin2020 cohort that saw 20 Black British writers published in the same year by independent publishing house, Jacaranda, a first in the UK. As a member of the Black Writers Guild, she is an advocate for improving Britain’s literary landscape. She has recently finished co-writing a romance comedy with a celebrity and is currently working on the sequel to Symona.

Njambi McGrath

Njambi is an award-winning comedian, author, presenter, and political commentator. Her accolades include hit BBC Radio 4 Series Becoming Njambi and Black Black. She’s had successful Soho theatre and Edinburgh fringe runs with her numerous one woman shows. She’s filmed several comedy specials. In 2019 she won the coveted Hackney empire New Act Of The Year (NATYS) Award. She’s appeared on Comedy Central, Channel 4, BBC One, BBC Two, as well as guesting on numerous radio programs like Front Row, Saturday Live, Broadcasting House and LBC. Njambi is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Through The Leopards Gaze. 

Kelechi okafor

Kelechi Okafor is a Nigerian-born, London-based lover of words—whether that’s crafting works of fiction, articles, stage plays or screenplays; from directing others on stage to expressing her thoughts on society one podcast episode at a time alongside esteemed interview guests on her award-winning podcast Say Your Mind. The podcast focusses on globally relevant conversations and events, framed through a lens of understanding that is firmly anti- colonial, white- supremacy and heteropatriarchy. It serves both as a personal exploration, and as a way to build a community that is challenged to think critically. Known online as @Kelechnekoff, Kelechi also affectionately known as “just a Baby Girl” by her followers, listeners, and community. Kelechi’s book Edge of Here is out now.

Candice Brathwaite

Candice is a successful author in both the non fiction and fiction spaces with her first book, ‘I am not your Baby Mother’ (2020) reaching the Sunday Times Bestseller list. Her fourth and fifth books are slated for release in 2024 both published by Quercus. Candice co-hosts hit podcast, ‘Closet Confessions’ with Sarel which has amassed millions of downloads and several sell
out live shows.

Jendella Benson

Jendella Benson is a British-Nigerian author and editor. Her debut novel, Hope & Glory, was published in 2022 and she is Head of Editorial at Black Ballad. Jendella is an accomplished writer, editor and creative with an impressive body of work spanning multiple forms. Her abiding passion for storytelling and eclectic life experiences have provided a foundation for her exploration of themes related to race, gender, and personal identity.

Tina Andrews

Tina is an international, multiple award-winning author, screenwriter, playwright, director, and producer. Her current novel Queen Charlotte Sophia: A Royal Affair (Jacaranda Books), based on Britain’s Queen Charlotte who was of Moorish descent, has been adapted by her into a play and a film which Tina and EGOT Whoopi Goldberg are producing.out live shows.

Olamide awonubi

Ola was born in London to Nigerian parents. She grew up and attended school in Brighton and lived in Nigeria before returning to England in 1992. An avid reader, she enrolled in writing classes and went on to obtain an MA in Creative Writing at the University of East London. Her latest novel – A Nurses Tale is a historical romance inspired by the life of Princess Adenrele Ademola who worked at Guys Hospital during the Second World war was published by One More Chapter Books; an imprint of Harper Collins Books in July 2023 and she is working on her second book for the imprint due for publication in 2025.

Laila Rafi

Laila has dabbled in a few industries but realised that her real calling was putting pen to paper, or more accurately, fingers to keyboard and getting lost in the world of happily ever afters. So now, that is exactly what she does. Her debut novel was shortlisted for the RNA Katie Fforde Debut Romantic Novel Award. Laila lives in the heart of London with her boisterous family and when she’s not writing or reading romance, she can be found watching almost any sport on TV or working on her latest crochet or knitting project.

JJ Bola

JJ is a writer and poet, he has published two novels, No Place to Call Home and the Selfless Act of Breathing, in the UK & North America, which have been translated into several languages including French, Brazilian-Portuguese, Spanish, and Italian. He has published a non-fiction book, Mask Off: Masculinity Redefined, three poetry collections, and a children’s book called Fly Boy, which is about a young boy learning to manage his emotions so he can fly. JJ is also a UNHCR Ambassador and works as a Mental Health Social Worker.

Stella Oni

Stella’s debut police procedural, Deadly Sacrifice, featuring detective Toks Ade, was shortlisted for the SI Leeds Literary Prize. She has contributed to various publications like Mystery Readers Journal and short stories in anthologies including Midnight Hour published by Crooked Lane. She is writing book two of the Toks Ade Mystery series, and book 1 of The London House Mystery series, her contemporary crime cosy. Stella is an International Thriller Writers Judge and Jhalak Prize 2024 Judge.

Magdalene Abraha FRSA

Magdalene is a writer, cultural curator and multi-award winning publisher. Magdalene started her journalism career as the youngest ever columnists for the Independent Newspaper where she covered politics, music, art and popular culture. Magdalene has since written for The Economist, The Guardian, VICE, the ipaper, Stylist, Vogue and more. She works across media and broadcast covering politics, music, popular culture, Black history and culture. Magdalene was on the 2022 Forbes 30 under 30 list for her work in writing and publishing.

Abiodun Abdul

Abbey is a Yorùbá-Nigerian writer and UNESCO Cities of Literature Global Poetry Slam Winner 2022. Her expressive writing includes life essays and diasporic travel stories posted on her website Yorùbá Yonder, through which she also conceived the YNAD Talks event series. She is penning a 3-part memoir-polemic encompassing her schooling across Yorùbá-Nigeria, Scots-Britain, and Japan with nuanced views on identity, ideology, social framework, and prejudice – Stained Glass Eyes: Race, Family, and Multiculturalism. She also writes Yorùbá-centred short stories alongside poetry on social justice and topics celebrating our common humanity. 

The Poet

George the Poet is a London-born spoken word performer of Ugandan heritage. His innovative brand of musical poetry has won him critical acclaim both as a recording artist and social commentator and seen his work broadcast to billions of people worldwide. In 2019, his audio offering ‘Have You Heard George’s Podcast?’ won a prestigious Peabody Award and 5 Gold British Podcast Awards, including the highly-coveted Podcast of the Year. More accolades followed in the years to come, including an NME Award, two Gold ARIAS, three New York Festival Awards and more. In 2021 The University of London presented George with an honorary doctorate in literature.