Derick van der Walt was born on 14 July 1958 in Virginia in the Free State. He matriculated in 1976 from Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool ("Affies") in Pretoria, after which he completed a BA Honours Degree in Communication at the University of South Africa.
Derick is currently one of the directors of Chilli Communication Consultants in Pretoria, which specialises in the production of corporate publications. He has been writing professionally for a number of publications for many years now. He has known since Std. 3 that he would probably become a writer one day, since that is when he won a writing competition which was organised by Jongspanateljee, a popular SABC radio programme at the time. He vaguely recalls the winning story was a suspense thriller which took place on a dark, deserted beach, and there was a submarine and a girl with “jet black” hair. (His prize money was a single brown R1 note.)
Derick was awarded the Sanlam Prize for Youth Literature: Gold
for his debut, Lien se lankstaanskoene
, in 2007. In 2009 the same book won him the M.E.R. Prize
for Youth Literature.
He lives in Pretoria with his wife, Lenie, and they have three grown sons - Tjaart, Werner and André.
Books still in print
, Tafelberg (2012)
Daan Dreyer se blou geranium
, Kwela Books
, Tafelberg (2010)
Lien se lankstaanskoene
, Tafelberg (2008)
Awards and honours
Sanlam Prize for Youth Literature: Silver (2010) – Willem Poprok
Sanlam Prize for Youth Literature: Gold (2007) – Lien se lankstaanskoene
M.E.R. Prize for Youth Literature (2009) – Lien se lankstaanskoene
2011 Daan Dreyer se blou geranium (Kwela Boeke)
2012 Hoopvol, Tafelberg
2010 Willem Poprok
2008 Lien se lankstaanskoene