8 Questions for Jerry Alagbaoso
Our partners, the Kampala-based Babishai Niwe Poetry Foundation, chaired by Beverley Nambozo Nsengiyuvna, just released the Call for Submissions for the 2015 BN Poetry Award. It’s open to all African Poets of all genders with $1000 in the sweet pot. Kenya’s Tom Jalio won the 2014 Award. Parrésia COO, Richard Ali, is on the Board.
See details below.
PRESS RELEASE-15 JANUARY 2015
2015 BN POETRY AWARD CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
The BN Poetry Foundation is pleased to bring yet another exhilarating, stimulating platform for African poets world-wide. We strongly believe in rewarding great poetry where we can and so, we are filled with abundant enthusiasm as we send out our 2015 call. #BNPA2015
The submissions will be received from January 15 2015 to May 15 2015. By early July, we will send out a long-list and later a shortlist and the final winner will be announced during the 2015 BN Poetry Festival in Kampala in August. The winner receives 1,000 US Dollars and the top ten will receive publication, poetry mentorship and participate in various literary festivals. There will be an exclusive pull-out of our experienced judges on Monday 26 January.
Guidelines for submissions:
• It is open to ALL African poets (living anywhere in the world), who will not have published (including self-publishing), a full-length collection of poetry by May 2015. By African we mean either born on the continent, citizen of an African country or with either one or both parents as citizens of an African country
• Submissions should be previously unpublished, in English and not more than 40 lines each. Submit using Times New Roman, single-spaced and size 12. Local languages are accepted only if English translations are sent alongside them
• Send a maximum of three poems and a minimum of one poem to firstname.lastname@example.org as a word attachment. Include the poem’s title on the poem but DO NOT include your name or contact details on the poem itself
• The subject line should read, “BNPA 2015”
• Include your name, email address, country or birth and country of permanent residence, telephone number and the titles of your poems in the body of the email
• The submissions will be accepted from January 15th to May 15th 2015 at 11:59pm Ugandan time
• There is no theme, be as inventive and original as possible
• The long-list will be announced by July 2015
• For more details or for any inquiries, view the website at http://www.bnpoetryaward.co.ug, , email email@example.com OR follow us on Twitter @BNPoetryAward
THE WINNER WILL RECEIVE 1,000 US DOLLARS. THE TOP 10 WINNERS WILL RECEIVE POETRY MENTORSHIP, PUBLICATION OF THEIR POEMS AND ALSO PARTICIPATE IN VARIOUS LITERARY FESTIVALS
There will be a special pull-out of our experienced Judges, running from 26th January to 7th August 2015
There is an increasing number of independent publishers, bloggers and content creators and writers collectives across the Continent showing a new way for African literature. Amongst these is the Jalada Writers Collective which was founded in Nairobi in 2012. Jalada just released their third Literature anthology yesterday and it’s got poems by Parrésia author, Richard Ali, who is a collective member, in it. See his Facebook post below.
Well done, Jalada!
The Jalada 02: Afrofuture(s) anthology was launched at midnight in Nairobi yesterday at http://www.jalada.org . It’s the third anthology of the Jalada Writers Collective and this edition has work from voices as diverse as Jude Dibia, Okwiri Oduor, Ivor Hartmann, Lydia Kasese and Melisa Kiguwa. I am a member of the Jalada Writers, I have three poems in the Anthology and it is the sum, at present, of our interpretation of Afrofuturism.
Read the Anthology free HERE: http://tinyurl.com/mmztstz
Please, share what catches your interest liberally. 🙂
Read the Anthology HERE AND be sure to #share
Our friends at the African Poetry Book Fund (APBF) have just launched a new Library in The Gambia, in partnership with Kadija Sesay’s SABLE Lit Mag. We are proud of this initiative. It was opened yesterday.
Official Launch of The African Poetry Library, The Gambia
It has taken a year of discussions, negotiations, preparations and meetings to make space for the library to bring it to fruition. We are pleased to announce the official opening of the ‘African Poetry Library, Gambia’ on Friday 9 Jan at 3pm.
We celebrate the official opening as The Gambia has been especially selected as one of five libraries on the African continent to have one of these libraries – the success of these ‘First Five’ will be closely monitored in order to establish further libraries. Gambia is already playing its part to show how much poetry is loved by Gambians – seen from the very fact that national newspapers carry daily poems; poet is often invited to perform at both small and large events.
The African Poetry Library – a Reading Library in The Gambia – is thanks to the efforts of the African Poetry Book Fund (APBF), Prairie Schooner, (the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s literary journal), and University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s (UNL) Libraries in conjunction with individuals and organisations in The Gambia, Botswana, Ghana, Kenya and Uganda.
Poet, Kadija Sesay’s, literary magazine SABLE, along with the African Homecomers Collective (AHC) are the caretakers for the library. The books are being donated by the African Poetry Book Fund (APBF) and the host space is being provided by the National Centre for Arts and Culture (NCAC). On Saturday 10 January there will be an ‘Open Mic’ poetry programme for all ages and a free session on performance skills. As well as being library stewards, volunteers are working on different library projects.
· KAI Youth Movement are planning the best way to undertake outreach in schools and collating the details of all poetry and fiction books published by Gambian authors in The Gambia.
· AHC members are liaising with the Department of Education whose members are also assisting with admin and promotion.
· SABLE LitMag are sourcing equipment and resources for the library and working , with AHC, on promotion.
· All involved are collating inspirational poetry quotes – we invite people to come and share poetry quotes from celebrated individuals
More volunteers are welcome!
The first 3-month programme and other exciting news will be announced at the opening. Please come and visit the library and put your visitor message on facebook and twitter before you leave!
The Programmes for Friday 9 January and for Sat 10 Jan 2015 are attached.
Launch: Friday 9 Jan, 3pm, NCAC Office, Fajara
Public Programme: Saturday 10 Jan, Library open from 10.30 – 3pm
APBF established with funding from Laura and Robert Sillerman
For more information contact:
Parrésia is pleased to release the new cover for Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s highly regarded short story collection, The Whispering Trees. The title story of The Whispering Trees [Parrésia Books 2012], was shortlisted for the 2013 Caine Prize for African Writing.
Abubakar is the 2013 Gabriel Garcia Marquez Fellow.
The new edition will be released in the first quarter of 2015.
Pre-order using the form HERE.
Azafi Omoluabi-Ogosi and Richard Ali warmly wish a happy new year to all #Parrésia authors, fans, supporters, and those who have bought into our three-year old dream of publishing quality books that keep Africa’s words in trust, one paperback at a time.
#2014 was a very tricky year for us, but we made it through.
#2015 will see the release of new titles under the Parrésia Books imprint, a continuation of the exciting work going on at Origami Books and the release of Blessing Musarari’s Cordite Books crime fiction novel. We will also continue to seek partnerships and arrangements to make our books available in all the major languages of Africa and the World, including Hausa and Swahili, German, French and Arabic. Our fans and friends can also expect to access our books on more platforms than we currently offer in this new year.
In related news, we will be releasing a new cover for Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s short story collection, The Whispering Trees, [Parrésia Books, 2014], today, to commemorate its third print run.
We treasure each and every one of our authors, from amu nnadi to Chika Unigwe, from Emmanuel Iduma ranging through Saddiq Dzukogi and Umar Sidi to Helon Habila, Molara Wood and Victor Ehikhamenor. Each one of you is a star.
Here’s to 2015, to a great year for books written in Africa, for Africa, for the World.
Happy New Year!!!
Parrésia COO, Richard Ali, will be on a panel tomorrow in Abuja to discuss ways to transform the Creative Industries in Nigeria. The Panel, organised by the British Council, will seek to articulate strategies to transform the industry, including Publishing, in the age of E-. Parresia Author, Reward Nsirim, will also be on the panel along with Charles Novia, Ese Oraka, Wale Ewedemi and Dike Chukwumerije.
It would be recalled that #TeamParresia won a #500,000 grant in the British Council’s Culture Shift programme and is currently developing its solution, tagged #ParresiaSocial, with Lagos-based CoCreation Hub.
The venue for the Panel is Petrus Royale Hotel at Garki 11, Abuja.
Parrésia Publishers Ltd’s partnership with London-based Digitalback Books was announced last week at the influential TedXEuston 2014 event. Digitalback Books is a virtual library venture dedicated to making literary works from Africa and the Diaspora widely available to readers. Other pioneering partners are the African Books Collective and Peepal Tree Press.
Download the Digitalback Books (Android) app HERE
In collaboration with Impelsys – a global leader in providing electronic content delivery solutions – Digitalback Books has brought its content to readers over multiple channels, including free apps for iPad and Android devices. Digitalback Books is built on the award-winning, SaaS-based Impelsys platform, iPublishCentral and offers a subscription model for readers to browse and read all of the available content online rather than having to purchase individual books outright.
“This launch is the culmination of a dream and a journey started many years ago.” said Gersy Ifeanyi Ejimofo, founder of Digitalback Books “We firmly believe that access to books reflecting one’s heritage and experience should not be considered a luxury. However, the distribution of physical books in Africa faces many obstacles; there are currently more smartphones in peoples’ hands than books. So our unique business model transforms each of these phones into a deliciously diverse collection of African works through an affordable subscription. We are glad to have found the right partners who saw our passion, understood our vision and have been able to support us with the right solution.”
About DigitalBack Books: http://www.digitalbackbooks.com sources literary works from across Africa and the Diaspora and makes them widely accessible as a digital library of 100’s of titles. Leveraging advances in technology and the explosion of mobiles devices on the continent, Digitalback Books seeks to plug some of the gaps that the region’s publishing industry faces in distribution.
Digitalback Books is available online and also available via apps for the iPad and Android devices.
Parrésia Publishers announces the release of Kayode Oguntebi’s début novel, Viral Load, under its Origami imprint.
Kayode Oguntebi’s Viral Load is a poignant narrative of various discourses, of the simple and predominant things that make up the trajectory of the African post-colonial experience. Tunde Lewu, a young Nigerian from a rather challenging middle class reaches a breach in his expectations when he realises that he has HIV from forgotten jolly escapades. But this is not a story only about Tunde Lewu, it is a story that intercepts the realities of military incursion into politics, the involvement of the western powers in contributing to the paragraphs of aid and the establishment of social organisation.
Lewu is only a character that navigates and engages the many characters in the global sphere that are looking for answers to personal, social and economic preponderances. The health of the person in Viral Load is subtly linked in the health of Africa. The health of a family shattered into specks of darkest brilliance props up unpalatable dissatisfaction that transcends the present and morphs into the novel’s future. This makes the author attempt a new proposition of a plot of this nature while retaining a flow from flashbacks and imaginations.
Kayode Oguntebi’s debut novel is full of promise. His futuristic narrative of what Africa would be when Africa leaders turn their paradigms towards improving the lives of the people. What you will find in Kayode Oguntebi’s novel is the cosmopolitan Africa capable of engaging the rest of the world as it presents its own cultural solutions packaged in a more acceptable, and verifiable quality.
Kayode Oguntebi is a colourful persona who works at a Multinational FMCG company where he has spent the last three years transforming business systems and processes across the African continent. Viral Load is his first novel, published 12 years after its first cut. He is married to Kudi Oguntebi.
Parrésia Publishers Ltd is pleased to announce that its author, amu nnadi, has just won the 2014 Glenna Luschei Prize for African Poetry for his collection through the window of a sandcastle published by our Origami Books imprint (2013). The collection, amu nnadi’s third, had earlier been shortlisted for the 2013 $100,000 NLNG Prize and won the prestigious Association of Nigerian Authors Prize for Poetry in 2013.
He was earlier shortlisted with Kadija Sesay (Senegal) and Kobus Moolman (South Africa).
The Glenna Luschei Prize is administered by the African Poetry Book Fund headquartered at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, USA–the Fund is run by an Editorial Board chaired by international poet and scholar Kwame Dawes. There is also an Advisory Board comprising Laura Sillerman, Glenna Luschei, Suleiman Adebowale, Elizabeth Alexander and Russel Goings.
In a press release published HERE on the APBF website, amu nnadi’s winning collection was described in the following words–
Abani says that in reading through the window of a sandcastle, “We come face to face with a truly original voice” that “creates new metaphors, new spaces of being, and new cartographies of the African soul. There are traces here of Christopher Okigbo’s striking vision and voice, of Eliot’s sense of epic, of Walcott’s ability to turn quotidian diction into a song of light, and yet a melancholy, a brilliance, a dance that is all original, all amu nnadi.” Abani calls the poems themselves poems of “remarkable lyric grace” with “a capacious imagination.”
It would be recalled that amu nnadi, apart from numerous poetry readings in Nigeria, has in the last year read his poems in Frankfurt, Germany. He was also in New York, USA where, as a guest of CUNY’s Medgar Evers College Celebrate Africa event, he read to an audience including New York City mayor Bill de Blasio and the first black mayor of New York, David Dinkins.
Two weeks ago, he was a guest at the Ake Book and Arts Festival, directed by Lola Shoneyin, in Abeokuta, Nigeria.
Congratulations amu nnadi, congratulations Nigeria!