News | Brittle Paper Announces Nominations For Inaugural Brittle Paper Literary Awards 2017.

Come September 23, 2017 winners would be named for inaugural 2017 Brittle Paper Literary Awards. Brittle Paper, a Blog, is celebrating its seventh anniversary with the launching of “Brittle Paper Literary Awards”, an award that recognises the finest, original pieces of African writing, published online across Africa.

The awards which come in five categories range from Fiction, Poetry, Non-fiction, and Essays/Think pieces to the anniversary Award for works published online. The winners in the fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction and essay/think pieces categories will receive $200 each while the Anniversary Award winner will get $300. 

The shortlists were made based on quality, relevance, and impact. Shortlisted fiction, poetry, nonfiction and essays/think pieces categories were those published from January, 2016 to July 2017 while anniversary award is for works published online between August, 2016 and July, 2017.

The celebration is not only of writers and their relevant works, it’s equally of blogs, magazines, journals, websites and their editors and publishers who are challenging the gate keeping of old literary institutions by setting up accessible, open spaces where true literary diversity can thrive.

The organizers underscores the critical role digital and social media play in creating new opportunities for creative works to flourish.  Brittle Paper Literary Awards is a step to showing gratitude to African writers for inhabiting the new intellectual space with grace and imagination.

The nominated works for Award for fiction include, “A Door Ajar” (Sibongile Fisher) which was published online in “Short Story Day Africa: Migration” (South Africa), “A short History of Zaka the Zulu” (Petina Gappah) in “The New Yorker” (Zimbabwe), “God’s Children are Little Broken Things” (Arinze Ifeakandu) in “A Public Space” (Nigeria), and “Ships in High Transit” by (Binyavanga Wainaina) in Expound (Kenya).

Others in the list for Award for fiction category are “Triptych: Texas Pool Party” by (Namwali Serpell) in “Triple Canopy” (Zimbabwe), “Farang” (Mega Ross) in “Short Story Day Africa: Migrations” (South Africa), “Squad” by (Linda Musita) in Enkare Review (Kenya), “Tea,” (TJ Benson) in “Short Story Day Africa: Migrations” (Nigeria), “The Upright Revolution: Or Why Humans Walk Upright,” by (Ngugi wa Thiong’o) in Jalada (Kenya) and “Beautiful,” by (Helon Habila) in Adda (Nigeria).
However, the nominees in poetry category Award include  Pythagoras Theorem,” by (Nick Makoha) in Adda (Uganda), “application for asylum,” (Safia Elhillo) in Frontier Poetry (Sudan), “Credo to Leave,” (JK Anowe) in Expound (Nigeria), “Your Body Is War,” by (Mahtem Shiferraw) in Hermeneutic Chaos Journal (Ethiopia / Eritrea), “A Series of Solitudes,” (Fiston Mwanza Mujila) in Enkare Review (DR Congo) and “How to Paint a Girl,” by (Gbenga Adesina) published in The New York Times Magazine (Nigeria).

Also nominated in poetry category are “Water,” by (Koleka Putuma) published in PEN South Africa (South Africa), “I Ask My Brother Jonathan to Write about Oakland, and He Describes His Room,” by (Yalie Kamara) in African Poetry Prize (Sierra Leone / USA), “Metamorphosis,” (Romeo Oriogun), in Brittle Paper (Nigeria) and “The Colour of James Brown’s Scream,” by (Kayo Chingonyi) published in African Poetry Prize (Zambia / UK).

The nominees for creative Non-fiction/Memoir category award include “Working the City,” by (Bernard Matambo) published in Transition (Zimbabwe), “Out of Europe—Traveling with the Caine Prize in Germany,” (Rotimi Babatunde) in Caine Prize Blog (Nigeria), and “How It Ends,” (Troy Onyango) in The Magunga (Kenya). Similar nominees were “Fugee,” by (Hawa Jande Golakai) in Safe House/Granta (Liberia), “Naijographia,” by (Bethuel Muthee) in Enkare Review (Kenya), “Uniben Boy in Berlin,” (Oris Aigbokhaevbolo) in Brittle Paper (Nigeria) and “Since Everything Was Suddening into a Hurricane,” by (Binyavanga Wainaina) in Granta (Kenya).

The works and authors nominated for Essay/Think pieces category award are: “Penpoints, Gunpoints, and Dreams: A History of Creative Writing Instruction in East Africa,” by (Billy Kahora) published in Chimurenga (Kenya), “In the Shadow of Context,” by (Kola Tubosun) in Enkare Review (Nigeria), “Poverty Porn: A New Prison for African Writers,” (Richard Oduor Oduku) in (Kenya) and “An Architect of Dreams: On Ngugi wa Thiong’o’s Devil on the Cross,” by (Tope Folarin) in Los Angeles Review of Books (Nigeria).
Others are “When We Talk about Kintu,” by (Ellah Allfrey) in Brittle Paper (Zimbabwe / UK), “Writes of Passage, an Urban Memoir, “The Labours of the Months: Of Work and Its Refuseniks,” by (Rotimi Babatunde) in Praxis (Nigeria), and “All Your Faves Are Problematic: A Brief History of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Stanning, and #BlackGirlMagic,” by (Sisonke Msimang)  published in Africa Is a Country (South Africa)