FROM small beginnings 10 years ago, the Midlands Literary Festival has grown to become a much-anticipated event on the Midlands calendar.Will you join us to celebrate stories and storytellers on August 31 and September 1 at Fern Hill Hotel? Real life tales are often the most compelling, and this year we have plenty to entertain you among the 25 authors who are participating. Ronnie Kasrils’ trademark wit will delight us in the story of his childhood, spent Catching Tadpoles — training for a life-long role as rebel. Wonderfully amusing raconteur Khaya Dlanga’s These things really do happen to me will recount the experiences that have shaped his life. Born storyteller Steve Wimberley will share funny, sometimes sad tales from his life as a small animal vet. Sonja Kruse will tell us about her remarkable moneyless journey around South Africa — captured in her book Ubuntu Girl. Siya Khumalo’s story You have to be Gay to Know God will be thought provoking, without a doubt, and Peter Storey’s account of ministering amidst the violence of the apartheid regime in I beg to differ will stir memories for many. Chris Hoare will share the story of his father’s life, “Mad Mike” Hoare, who lived life dangerously as a mercenary, adventurer and explorer. Ekow Duker tells an enthralling story Yellowbone, which spans three countries — Ghana, Britain and South Africa. Julia Martin’s exquisitely written and moving portrait of her mother’s dementia in The Blackridge House has been described as a quiet masterpiece — unmissable. On Sunday morning, bestselling author and TV personality, Mogau Seshoene of The Lazy Makoti’s Guide to the Kitchen, will share her fresh take on traditional South African food — a story which began when she helped a young bride overcome the challenges of being the perfect daughter-in-law. On Sunday afternoon, children of all ages are invited to join us for a free storytelling session in the Fern Hill Chapel — Michelle Sciacca, Cuba and Lungile Ikaneng, Lori-Ann Preston, Kim Broughton and others will entertain. Stories told from the heart are usually the best. This year the festival programme is crammed with such literary treasures. Watch the website for the latest programme. August 31 and September 1 at Fern Hill Hotel in Howick. Tickets cost R300 for the whole weekend or R100 per morning or afternoon session (six authors).Book the easy way on Quicket or send a message to Gill on 082 893 0954 or e-mail email@example.comLike and follow the Midlands Literary Festival on Facebook. — Supplied.