Short Story Day Africa is pleased to announce the shortlist for the R10 000 Short Story Day Africa Prize for Short Fiction.

This year over 450 entrieswere received for the Prize from over two dozen countries, from writers both living on the African continent and in the African diaspora. Once whittled down according to submissions guidelines, each story was stripped of all identifying elements and sent to two readers. A selection of 60 stories was then whittled down by the SSDA team to a longlist of 21. Alllonglisters stories will be collected in Water: New Short Fiction From Africa, Short Story Day Africa’s third anthology.

The Writivism 2016 workshops will be held on various dates in January, March and April 2016 in five different African cities. The three-day non-residential workshops are planned for Goma, Dakar, Abidjan, Accra and Kampala. For the first time, we shall hold Non-Fiction and Poetry workshops besides Fiction and shall hold some in French besides the English ones. Below are the details of the various workshops.

January 8 – 10, 2016:               Goma (Fiction – held in French)

January 15 – 17, 2016:              Dakar (Non-Fiction – held in French)

January 22 – 24, 2016:              Abidjan (Fiction – held in French)

March 6 – 8, 2016:                    Accra (Non-Fiction – held in English)

April 15 – 17, 2016:                   Kampala (Poetry – held in English)

Another innovation is that whereas our workshops have in the past been limited to writers based on the continent, the Accra workshop shall be open to emerging writers based in the Caribbean.

Facilitators for the various workshops shall be announced in due time (in October, 2015) and processes for applying for limited travel funding to attend some of the workshops for needy applicants shall be announced after successful applicants have been selected (in November, 2015). Successful applicants will be announced at the Ake Arts and Books Festival (17 – 21 November, 2015), in Abeokuta Nigeria.

Applications process closes on October 30, 2015.

Visit the Writivism website, for more information.

Congratulations to Ake Arts and Book Festival 2013 guest, Marlon James on winning the 2015 Man Booker Prize for Fiction.

A Brief History of Seven Killings  by  Marlon James  is tonight, Tuesday 13 October, named as the winner of the 2015 Man Booker Prize for Fiction. A Brief History of Seven Killings is published by Oneworld Publications.

The 44-year-old, now resident in Minneapolis, is the first Jamaican author to win the prize in its 47-year history. 

A Brief History of Seven Killings is a 686-page epic with over 75 characters and voices. Set in Kingston, where James was born, the book is a fictional history of the attempted murder of Bob Marley in 1976. Of the book, the New York Times said: ‘It’s like a Tarantino remake of “The Harder They Come”, but with a soundtrack by Bob Marley and a script by Oliver Stone and William Faulkner...epic in every sense of that word: sweeping, mythic, over-the-top, colossal and dizzyingly complex.'

Referring to Bob Marley only as ‘The Singer’ throughout, A Brief History of Seven Killings retells this near mythic assassination attempt through the myriad voices – from witnesses and FBI and CIA agents to killers, ghosts, beauty queens and Keith Richards’ drug dealer – to create a rich, polyphonic study of violence, politics and the musical legacy of Kingston of the 1970s. James has credited Charles Dickens as one of his formative influences, saying ‘I still consider myself a Dickensian in as much as there are aspects of storytelling I still believe in—plot, surprise, cliffhangers’ (Interview Magazine).

This is the first Man Booker Prize winner for independent publisher, Oneworld Publications. Read more here.

 

Next year 215 candidates from 59 countries will be in the running for the world’s largest children’s literature award, jury chair Boel Westin announced at the Frankfurt Book Fair today.

The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA) recognizes creators of literature in a broad sense. Nominees include authors, illustrators, storytellers, and persons and organisations who work to promote literacy. Jury chair Westin said:

“We are deeply impressed by the work of the nominating bodies in proposing qualified candidates for ALMA. I hope the nominee list will be an active reference for literacy promoters and educators around the world as they seek out the most outstanding contemporary literature for children and young adults.”

A total of 111 nominating bodies worldwide proposed candidates for the 2016 award. Many chose to re-nominate previous candidates, but this year’s list also includes 42 new names. New nominating countries for this year are China, Nicaragua, Palestine, Austria, and the United Arab Emirates. The complete list of nominees is online at www.alma.se.

“The jury now has the hard but very pleasant and rewarding job of finding one or more laureates for 2016. We have meetings once a month and between meetings we read piles of books and documents.”

The laureate or laureates of the 2016 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award will be announced in Stockholm and Bologna immediately following the jury’s final meeting on April 5 of next year.

Read more here

 

STATEMENT FROM DR. DENIS MUKWEGE 

TO THE DRC GOVERNMENT PROHIBITION OF FILM

September 3, 2015

DRC Media Minister Bars Screening of 

"The Man Who Mends Women – The Wrath of Hippocrates” Documentary

 (Bukavu, DRC) The following is a statement from Dr. Denis Mukwege, Founder and Medical Director of the Panzi Hospital and Foundations:

 “It is with a great regret that we must confirm we have been informed of the prohibition of screening the documentary film of Thierry Michel and Colette Braeckman in DR Congo.

“We attended the film premieres at The Hague, in Brussels, and in Paris. We are impatient for our compatriots to see it in their country. This film was made for them. This film belongs to them.

“The DRC Media Minister’s decision to censor the film makes plain the will of the government to refuse the Congolese people their right of access to information, to their history and their right to collective memory, and to tell the truth. This decision demonstrates the minister’s intent to manipulate and control the people.

You’ll be in excellent company if you join us for the inaugural Success Spark Brand Writing Retreat at the picturesque One-Minute South on Bulago Island from Friday 9 October to Monday 12 October 2015.

The only requirements are that you are a lover of literature and writing, have intellectual curiosity and openness to new artistic experiences, and the desire to deepen your understanding of the creative process.The retreat will be filled with concentrated and purposeful sessions where you will work on a chapter, or story outline that you will have targeted to complete before hand.

This retreat is not a binge-writing event. So whether you want to edit a short story, finish a novel or non-fiction book, write a couple of chapters, outline a novel/ book— you’re more likely to do it if you’ve thought ahead, and we will work with you ahead of the retreat to set up your expectations and targets.

Are you a playwright or dramatist? Do you write dramatic literature or drama to be performed by actors?

To support young playwrights, the Lagos Theatre Festival 2016 is seeking submissions of scripts for the Festival. The topic of the play should reflect the experiences of young people living in Lagos today. Shortlisted plays will be selected by a panel of writers for a creative writing workshop and script development.  

The winners of the competition will be awarded a cash prize of #100,000 each with the option to have the play performed at Lagos Theatre Festival 2016. The prize, publication and production are subject to the playwright agreeing to the terms of the Lagos Theatre Festival Production Team. As part of this season, the Lagos Theatre Festival will return bigger and better than ever before, occupying several venues on Lagos Island and the Mainland with a curated festival running alongside a small Fringe strand.

There is no entry fee and the competition is opened to all playwrights aged 18 to 35. Shortlisted plays will be selected by a panel of distinguished writers for a creative writing workshop and script development mentorship for the final scripting.

Key Considerations

·         The subject matter of the play should reflect the experiences of young people living in Lagos today.

·         The content can be related to fashion, lifestyle, music, food, social media, technology, photography or film.  

·         The Plots may include family, relationships, politics and values. Plays can be situated at the venues of the festival Freedom Park and University of Lagos. 

GUIDELINES

1.    Nationwide submissions are welcomed

2.    Submissions must be original, unpublished, full-length plays written in English

3.    Playwrights may submit only one manuscript

4.    Plays that have been previously produced or published are not eligible; plays that have had a workshop, reading, or non-professional production will be considered

5.    Plays must not be under option, commissioned, or scheduled for professional production or publication at the time of submission

6.    Plays must be typed or word-processed and page numbered.

7.    Lagos Theatre Festival reserves the right not to choose a script and reserves the right to determine the ineligibility of a playwright, in keeping with the spirit of the competition

8.    Applicants submitting entries must be the owner and controller of the copyright.  Co-authored plays or plays based upon factual material or an adaptation are allowable. However, legal clearance of materials not in the public domain is the full responsibility of the playwright(s). A page stating and certifying this with the author/applicants signature shall accompany each submitted entry.

9.    Only successful applicants will be contacted. You will receive an email auto response upon receipt of your submission

HOW TO APPLY

·         Please include your name and contact information (including address, phone number, and email address) and a brief biography of no more than 400 words on the first page of the document.

·         The manuscript must begin with a title page containing the title, a 2-3 sentence description of the play, a list of characters, and a list of acts and scenes.

·         Please send your application to [email protected]  

Deadline for all submission is midnight on 9th August 2015

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