In much of the inhabited world (90% of the global population lives in the northern hemisphere) the start of September marks the beginning of meteorological autumn, the season when our thoughts may turn to shorter days, colder temperatures and things sempiternally supernatural.
This year’s theme is Polychromancy, a word concocted via Greek polychromos (‘many-colours’) and manteia (‘divination’) to suggest a focus on fantasy/sci-fi by authors from diverse backgrounds. The idea is to explore the work of SFF authors who identify as Black, Asian, Indigenous, or other colours and ethnicities such as Roma – or indeed who claim a multiethnic ancestry.
What can you expect, then, during the week running from Halloween to Bonfire Night, 31st October to 5th November? We’ll have posts from a couple or so guest bloggers who’ll be looking at fantasy away from the usual fantasy confines of North America and Europe, as well as pieces from a couple of familiar names looking at other polychromantic themes.
And of course, Witch Week 2022 will include a readalong that complements our theme: Black Water Sister by Zen Cho, a Malaysian author based in the UK. A number of bloggers have already signed up to read and join an online discussion of this, and you are welcome to add your comments to the post of that discussion when it appears.
There’ll be reminders (as if you’ll be needing them!) in the weeks leading up to the commencement of Witch Week itself, and at the end a reveal of the theme for next year’s Witch Week. In the meantime it may be worth looking at Re-enchanted: The Rise of Children’s Fantasy Literature in the Twentieth Century* by Maria Sachiko Cecire, should any reason be demanded for looking beyond the Anglo-American dominance of the fantasy genre.
* The link is to my review.