RitaSaliba

1.

Biography

Born in 1964, Rita Saliba writes prose for both adults and children, and also channels her creative pursuits into painting and illustration. When she first began writing at an early age, the experience was associated with the cultivation of a secret world known only to herself.

Jump to bibliography

But upon being crowned winner of the inaugural national competition for Young Adult Literature, she was driven to understand how literature can forge connections across consciousnesses which could span various generations.

The result of this victory was embodied in her first novel, Inżul ix-Xemx (Sunset, Merlin Publishers, 2011), which focuses on a friendship that develops between two boys – Josef and Thomas, the latter of which is bound by a strict parental regime by dint of suffering a rare illness. Two more novels for youths would soon follow – Bella Berger (Klabb Kotba Maltin, 2013), and Il-Kulur tal-Lellux (The Colour of Daisies, BDL, 2016) which consolidated Saliba’s hold on the youth prize, leading to a varied literary career.

This, notwithstanding that Saliba began writing and publishing at a relatively mature age. Something which the author deems to be a plus – life experience does make rich fodder for fiction, and that truism appears to hold as far as Saliba’s subsequently prolific trajectory is concerned. Her partnership with Merlin Publishers continued with a number of books for children - some for whom she took on translating duties, while collaborating with authors and illustrators for the Senduq series. Saliba’s childhood love for the historical fiction she used to precociously consume at her grandmother’s house also found vent in her efforts at adaptation: for Klabb Kotba Maltin, she has adapted the classic works of Ġużè Bonnici and Ġużè Galea for a teenage readership … perhaps channelling that same impulse which led a young Saliba to immerse herself in the atmospherics of a Malta gone by, even if the plot was a bit foggy for her by that point.

As if to further compensate for her ‘late’ start in the writing game, Saliba can also credit four short story collections to her name; the earlier two – Satin and Damask (Horizons) – being composed of ‘full-length’ short stories while the more recent volumes are made up of microfictions running approximately 100 to 200 words each. Her first adult novel, O.B.E.– a psychological thriller driven by the concept of out-of-body-experiences, as the title suggests – further cements Saliba as an author unafraid to experiment with literary forms.

The true joy that underlies Saliba’s busy output is, however, most keenly felt during the research stage, with Saliba valuing especially the element of human encounters, which the eventual writing even engenders more of, on occasion. Glad to form part of the wider community of Maltese writers, Saliba shares one common complaint among them: the dearth of a proper feedback and criticism mechanism within the literary culture.

Written by Teodor Reljić

2.

Bibliography

MittKelma

HundredWords
Prose
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Klabb Kotba Maltin, Malta

O.B.E.

Prose
Author
Publisher
Klabb Kotba Maltin, Malta

Lorella u l-Ġenju li ma kienx jaf jaqra

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the Malta National Book Prize
Illustrator
Moira Scicluna
Publisher
BDL, Malta

Ħjut

Threads
Prose
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

It-tikek ta’ Gabrijel

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Rita Saliba
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Fuq Widnejn Torox u Stejjer Żbukkati Oħra

On deaf ears
Prose
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Klabb Kotba Maltin, Malta

Damask

Prose
Author
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Gabrijel u l-flokk tar-rokit

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Nuntia
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Gabrijel irid misluta

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Nuntia
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Għażla ta' poeżiji u mikrostejjer / Selection of poems and microstories

Selection
Various
Dutch
Author
Translator
Janneke SpoelstraHedwig Terpstra
Publisher
Ensafh, Netherlands

Typysk

Poetry
Dutch
Author
Translator
Rita Saliba
Publisher
Ensafh, Netherlands

Il-Ħajjat tal-Istejjer

Prose
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Robert Caruana
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Żiffa Mqarba f’Ħal Buffura

Prose
Maltese
Author
Publisher
BDL, Malta

Weraq tal-Fidda: Stejjer u versi għat-tfal

Various
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Rebecca Barry
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Il-Buffu l-Mistħi/The Timid Clown

Picture book
Maltese
English
Author
Illustrator
Naomi Gatt
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Il-Kulur tal-Lellux

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the ‘Novels for Youths’ Prize
Publisher
BDL, Malta

In-Naffar li Xtaq Itir/The Scarecrow Who Wanted to Fly

Picture book
Maltese
English
Author
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Satin

Prose
Author
Publisher
Horizons, Malta

Il-Misteru tal-Labirint

Prose
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Il-Misteru tad-Dniefel tal-Ġebel

Prose
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Bella Berger

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the ‘Novels for Youths’ Prize
Publisher
Klabb Kotba Maltin, Malta

Psitt-psitt, Buuk-Buuk: Stejjer mill-BirdPark

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Publisher
Kite, Malta

Inżul ix-Xemx

Prose
Maltese
Author
Awards
Winner of the ‘Novels for Youths’ Prize
Publisher
Merlin Publishers, Malta

Kevin u Qatraxita

Picture book
Maltese
Author
Illustrator
Frank Schembri
Publisher
Klabb Kotba Maltin, Malta
Supported by

Arts Council Malta

Creative Industries Platform

Project co-ordinator: Clare Azzopardi

With the help of: Kirsty Azzopardi, Leanne Ellul and Albert Gatt

Proofreader: Dwayne Ellul

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