#Parrésia Set to Release @pius_adesanmi ‘s “Naija No Dey Carry Last”.


Full cover: Naija No Dey Carry Last

Naija No Dey Carry Last
It’s been several months of excitement working with Premium Times Books on Professor Pius Adesanmi’s new book. It’s a charm of a book, every single page of it. The cover was designed by the amazing visual artist Victor Ehikhamenor (VEE Global Ltd, Lagos).

Naija No Dey Carry Last by Professor Pius Adesanmi gathers his most important reflections on Nigeria over the last decade, mostly published in his Premium Times, Sahara Reporters and Nigerian Village Square columns. Naija No Dey Carry Last is a tribute and an argument for the place of memory in Nigeria’s socio-politics.

Adesanmi has over the last twenty years established his stature as one of Africa’s leading academics and was one of the first to use social media as a new classroom in which to test out his ideas and engage with our country. Educated at the Universities of Ilorin, Ibadan and British Columbia, Pius Adesanmi, who is presently a Professor of English and African Studies at Carleton University in Canada, has won numerous awards including the inaugural Penguin Prize for African Writing in 2010.

Naija No Dey Carry Last will be out in bookstores late September. It will be available everywhere–bookstores, via the Parresia website, via Amazon’s bookstore, the Kindle store, everywhere. We will keep everyone posted. Meantime, please follow our social media handles.

Twitter @pius_adesanmi 

Facebook: Naija No Dey Carry Last 



Babishai Niwe Foundation (Uganda) Announces @BNPoetryAward 2015 Submissions

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.



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 bnpa2015@bnpoetryaward.co.ug 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 bnpoetryaward@bnpoetryaward.co.ug OR follow us on Twitter @BNPoetryAward


There will be a special pull-out of our experienced Judges, running from 26th January to 7th August 2015

Parrésia’s Richard Ali in Jalada Collective’s #Afrofutures Anthology

Richard Ali

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. 🙂

– Ra.

Read the Anthology HERE AND be sure to #share

Parrésia On British Council #GenTalk Creative Industries Panel


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.

Two Parresia Authors on #MadeInAfrica #Fiction List

Respected blog site, This Is Africa, has just put up a list of 9 authors published in Africa you should know about and we are pleased to note two of these authors, the first two on the list, are our very own Parrésia Books imprint authors. They are Abubakar Adam Ibrahim and Chika Unigwe.

Abubakar Adam Ibrahim’s “The Whispering Trees” is also now available for download on mobile literature vendor Okada Books. Download the Okada Books Android app HERE.

#MadeInAfrica #Fiction #ThisIsAfrica

1. Abubakar Adam Ibrahim (The Whispering Trees)

Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, born in Jos, Nigeria, writes prose, poetry and drama. He won the BBC African Performance Prize in 2007, the ANA Plateau/Amatu Braide Prize for Prose in 2008, was runner-up for the ANA Plateau Poetry Prize, was a fellow of the British Council Radiophonics creative workshop, attended the Fidelity Bank Creative Writing Workshop, the 2012 and 2013 Caine Prize workshops, and has also been a Gabriel Marquez Fellow. His debut collection of short stories The Whispering Trees, published by Paressia, was longlisted for the 2013 Etisalat Prize for African Literature, and the title story shortlisted for the 2013 Caine Prize for African Writing. His was the only story published on the continent to be shortlisted for the Caine Prize that year. He is the arts editor at the Abuja-based Sunday Trust. He was a mentor on the 2013 Writivism programme, facilitated the Abuja Writivism workshop in 2014 and judged the 2014 Writivism Short Story Prize. He also facilitated the Caine Short Story surgery at the 2014 Port Harcourt Book Festival.

2. Chika Unigwe (Night Dancer)
Chika Unigwe, born in Enugu, Nigeria, writes fiction in English and Dutch. She was shortlisted for the Caine Prize for African Writing in 2003 and won the BBC Short Story competition and the Commonwealth Short Story competition in 2004. Her debut novel De Feniks, written in Dutch and published in 2005, was shortlisted for the Vrouw en Kultuur debuutprijs prize. It was later published in Nigeria by Farafina Publishers in 2007 as The Phoenix. In 2009, her novel On Black Sisters’ Street was published by Jonathan Cape and won the Nigeria Prize for Literature in 2012. It was originally published in Dutch as Fata Morgana. In 2012, Night Dancer was published by Jonathan Cape. It was later published in Nigeria by Paressia. Chika has been named by the Hay Festival as one of the top 39 writers under the age of 40 that will shape the future of African Literature. She holds a PhD in Literature from the University of Leiden and is the founder of the Awele Creative Trust.

Find the full #ThisIsAfrica List HERE

[Publishing Perspectives] Parrésia, other African Publishers, at the #FrankfurtBookFair

Parrésia is in today’s Publishing Perspectives, a story by Saskia Vogel [Dialogue Berlin]. Parrésia, along with Farafina’s Eghosa Imasuen, Kwani?s Billy Kahora, award-winning Parrésia poet amu nnadi and Port Harcourt World Book Capital’s Koko Kalango were on a panel chaired by CORA’s Jahman Anikulapo during the Frankfurt Book Fair 2014.

Read the story HERE


‘Richard Ali then asked Chief Okereke for more transparency around larger publishers, suggesting that the lack of transparency is a hurdle to discovery: “Does Heinemann have an open submissions period? Who are the editors? Who are the agents? I don’t have this information. It is grossly unfair to accuse my generation of not having courage. It’s the opportunities that are not there. We are starting things that are new.”

Apply Today: @CACEAfrica #Writivism Workshop 2014


From the CACEAfrica Director, Bwesigye bwa Mwesigire.


I am writing to you from the Centre for African Cultural Excellence (CACE), a non profit that promotes the role of the arts and culture in African societies, head-quartered in Kampala, Uganda. We are proud of the work that you are doing to promote African arts and culture and look forward to collaborating with you again, in the coming months to promote the Writivism workshops and Short Story Prize 2015.

Some background: Writivism is CACE’s flagship program and aims at promoting emerging African writers. The CACE model is based on equipping writers with skills, through workshops and mentorship and promoting their work through newspaper publication of stories developed in our workshops, publication of an annual anthology, an annual short story prize, public readings, school tours and a mini-festival. Writivism was piloted in 2012/3 in Uganda and is now being scaled up, to cover the whole African continent.

In 2014, we held one day Creative Writing workshops in Abuja, Harare, Kampala, Cape Town and Nairobi. They developed flash fiction stories for publication in several African newspapers and entries to the Writivism short story prize.

This year, we are holding 3-day workshops in Kampala, Dar es Salaam, Gaborone, Johannesburg and Lagos in January 2015. They will be facilitated by established writers like Dilman Dila, Ayeta Wangusa, Zukiswa Wanner, Dami Ajayi and Yewande Omotoso.

We are sending this email blast right now because it is about 2 weeks to the close of the applications (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1mu8ovBYmVBOT4awIZb2w-0kFX_Y677ISjdeP6vMn01Q/viewform). Please share it within your networks, or forward it to an emerging writer you know. We would like as many people to have the chance to benefit as possible.

Thank you.”

Have YOU applied yet? Parrésia authors Richard Ali and Abubakar Adam Ibrahim have been involved in the workshops since inception. We highly recommend #Writivism

When Shadows Uncrown Her Majesty: A Review of Saddiq M. Dzukogi’s Sunbeams and Shadows

Title: Sunbeams and Shadows
Name of Author: Saddiq M. Dzukogi
Genre: Poetry
No. of Pages: 110
Publisher: Origami imprint of Parresia Publishers Ltd
ISBN: 978-978-938-254-8
Reviewers: Jalaludeen I. Maradun & Salamatu Sule

Saddiq is an award-winning poet. He has already published two poetry volumes each of which has won him awards and laurels. He is currently a student of Mass Communication in the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria. Sunbeams and Shadows is his third published poetry volume.


Sunbeams and Shadows is a volume of eighty seven poems. There is an underlying notice here as to the meaning of the title of the volume. Even though we know it is an oxymoron; a contrast between light and shade, we should think about the semantic interpretation. It is our understanding that the sunbeams represent irradiation, sunshine, sunlight and rays of light whilst shadows represent shadiness, shadowiness and penumbra. Beyond the meaning of the mere terms, a single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows – we may think that shadows only follow, precede or surround beings or objects, the crux of the matter is that they also surround words, ideas, desires, deeds, impulses and even memories. Though the title could have a number of interpretations, Saddiq tries to convince us here that if we keep our face to the sunshine, we cannot see the shadow. Alas, time is but the shadow of the world upon the background of eternity.

The title expounds Saddiq’s curious ironic imagination at its very best. The poems themselves – nifty, appealing and stunning as they are, do not always quite please the expectation aroused by the title.

In this classic poetry volume, Saddiq uses celestial objects like sunlight as contrast with shadow to measure movement of the earth as it relates to the known and the unknown. Life is full of pregnant circumstances as it walks to the embrace of the receding dusk. As the radiant sucks the very youthfulness, we do not know what tomorrow holds but we are a people full of hope. Time as represented by the Sun and Shadows always seems to take away that which it brings forth the rays of love, death and the memories it finally leaves us with. If sun be the queen of the day glues to one spot with radiating effect on our very being, our existence, the poet tells us that darkness always dethrones her. Like the sun, what we so much value never stay. The volume exposes our existential mawkishness with a heightened irony of circumstance which derides all human vanity, time causing destruction as it defies our earthly desires. Dawn, which is the opening poem, is thought-provoking as we are confronted by the reality through cycle of cluster imageries. Dawn is personified to have falls on the puzzle plate of dusk, creating a pool of wrinkles.
In line 6-7, we are confronted with the reality as:

This Child of moon and sun
Sucks gaiety from youth (Dawn)

With poems likes “Wings of Sun”, “Sky-doors”, “Life”, “Green Air”, “See the Sea”, “Dear Heaven” and “Future in Tears”, Saddiq is not only a poet but a pupil of nature, life and society. His knowledge of word-value is as propound as his knowledge of nature. He carries over the eye and method of studying society into the field of poetry, that the fresh, living, and striking forms he has created seem so perceptible. The glaring accuracies of description with which Saddiq’s poetry abounds are amazing. In some cases, the pictorial accuracy is that of a photograph taken with a lens of ice, brutally clear. There are instances where this accuracy, deepened and sharpened by satire cuts both ways. Saddiq’s gift of combining words is sure, even when you do not know what he is saying; you know that he is saying it well. One might quote many poems in proof of Saddiq’s genuine gift for language. We shall have to be satisfied with one:


Light, absent…
Rays fall on my left side
Gulping up darkness
Deceptive print appears
On my every side
Now, everywhere I tread
It haunts…

Saddiq’s collection stimulates our sensory organ as he creates mental pictures through series of objects; it appeals to our sense of feeling, smell, including auditory imageries. The collection which stands out as a unique style of the poet denotes that man’s time on earth is short-lived – including friendship, love and the bond that is soon detached and the meaninglessness of life as it disappears to reappear betraying man yet again and again.

Give me the light
In its real aspect
Of darkness (line1-3, friendship of shadows)

In the last three lines of the same poem, Saddiq tells us of how sunbeams betray our friendship, and dusk as represented by shadow cause us to lose our love ones as life is cut short. Here is where sunbeams lose particles of original ray:

Between sunbeams and shadows
In a friendship that wobbles like a ship on murky waters
Sunbeams assess the shame of shadows
(Line 8-10, friendship of shadows pg14)

Saddiq’s collection is that of a wordsmith vibrant per excellence. The collection is a complex one and this has to do with understanding life, nature as it is and the cause of unraveling the too many mysteries as caused by the events of the day. His use of language is unique, the paradox is striking. The volume is rich in all form of literary devices from personification to synecdoche, enjambment and many more. The formal beauty of Sunbeams and Shadows has that quality of speed common to racing cars, aeroplanes and to those birds surviving because of their swift wings. When you read a few poems of Saddiq, you get the impression from the richness of his verbal imagination that he is a poet of rich personality. The poet is more a realist as he vividly shows the social condition of man as he wakes up to meet the challenges of everyday life. Life is not a bed of roses as it seems by the sunbeams after all. Our reservation here is the lots of shift and change in perception of moods by the persona. With Sunbeams and Shadows , Saddiq succeeds in harnessing the sun’s energy.

[Book Covers]: Parrésia Releases New Titles at Ake Arts Festival!!!

Parrésia is delighted to announce the release of two new books tomorrow, 20th of November, at the Ake Arts and Book Festival holding in Abeokuta, Ogun State. Below are the book covers—

Night Dancer [novel] by Chika Unigwe


Indigo [short stories] by Molara Wood.


 Both books will be available at the Festival Bookstand and at the #artmosphere stand.

Cover Price: N2,000 only.

 Nationwide distribution to bookshops and via our online partner, Konga.com, will be complete by 26th November, 2013.


Follow us on Twitter @Parresiabooks and Facebook for book covers, readings and discounts.