- Category: TOW 2013
Durban-born, Cape Town based author, photographer and filmmaker, Zinaid Meeran, holds a Bachelor of Social Science from the then University Natal, an Honours degree in Politics from the University of Cape Town, as well as a Master's degree in Critical Studies and an MFA from the University of California, Los Angeles. He studied film at UCLA on a Fulbright scholarship.
Meeran discovered that his writing is palatable to South Africans when he was awarded the European Union Literary award for his debut Saracen at the Gates in 2009. The novel, about a curious exploration of living raceless in a country where just about everybody seems to have one, was also shortlisted for the Sunday Times fiction prize in 2010. His second novel Tanuki Ichiban is a daring and comic offering, recently published in 2012.
As a writer/director, Meeran writes and develops feature screenplays and makes shorts and documentaries as one half of filmmaking outfit Team Tarbaby with twin brother Jean Meeran and Sarah Jones. This team has been making films since 2001. In 2008, the team’s short fiction film The Char-ou from Outer Space screened at the Zanzibar Film Festival.
Meeran has worked as a freelance journalist writing for the Buraku Liberation League Journal. As an internet journalist/photographer, he worked fulltime for TNT Travel Magazine in London between 2000 and 2001, and as a freelance film reviewer for the Mail&Guardian from 2007 to 2009.
Also skilled in television work, Meeran was a producer for the Parliamentary Service Television in Cape Town from 1998 to 2000. He also took on the role of TV researcher for M-Net current affairs programme Carte Blanche and the 1990s talk show The Felicia Show.
His forthcoming novel is titled That Pesky Ovule.
Tanuki Ichiban, Jacana Media, 2012
Saracen at the Gates, Jacana Media, 2009