Subscribe to Newsletter
Monthly Newsletter: Join more than 5,000 African literature enthusiasts!
Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our "Guide to African Novels."

efemia-chela-caine-prize-story-review-brittle-paper2

Efemia Chela was one of the participants in the Writivism Mentorship Programme and attended the Writivism workshop in Cape Town this year. She was one of the shortlisted writers for the 2014 Caine Prize with her story Chicken, first published in Short Story Day Africa in Feast, Famine and Potluck. She spoke to Caleb Adebayo about her Writivism experience.

CA: How did you get to know about the Writivism workshops?

EC: I saw the Writivism workshops advertised on social media.

CA: Who was your mentor? How did you find the mentorship sessions?

EC: My mentor was Rachel Zadok and she was incredible. I think that’s because she has such a great oeuvre herself – somewhat folk-based, part dystopian, epic poetry as a novel. A strange distinctive kind of African fiction that is a beauty to read and behold. We communicated mostly online and once in person and she gave me great feedback. There was a lot of track changes and back and forth. When I was stuck with how to develop a story she gave me guidance. She also introduced me to writing in third person which I hadn’t done before.

CA: Are you still in touch with her?

EC: I am still in touch with her regularly. We share war stories about the publishing industry and talk about what we are going to write next.

CA: Do you think Writivism is doing anything worthwhile for upcoming writers?

EC: I think Writivism is good for upcoming writers because it sets them challenges that constrain their writing (the flash fiction piece) and a short story. So they have to really pare their writing down and get to the heart of the story which is an excellent skill to have in your arsenal as a writer.

 

This interview is the sixth in a series showcasing new African writers. It’s a platform for these writers to share their story and reflect not just on their work but also on the African literary scene.  Check back every Friday for a new interview. Thanks to the folks at Writivism for conducting the interviews and choosing to share it on our platform. 

Tags: , , , , ,

Ainehi Edoro is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she teaches African literature. She received her doctorate at Duke University. She is the founder and editor of Brittle Paper and series editor of Ohio University Press’s Modern African Writer’s imprint.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Caine Prize Shortlistee, Efemia Chela, Speaks on Writivism and … | Career College Mentors - November 3, 2014

    […] Caine Prize Shortlistee, Efemia Chela, Speaks on Writivism and … […]

Leave a Reply

Welcome to Brittle Paper, your go-to site for African writing and literary culture. We bring you all the latest news and juicy updates on publications, authors, events, prizes, and lifestyle. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram (@brittlepaper) and sign up for our "I love African Literature" newsletter.

Monthly Newsletter!

Subscribe for African literature news, and receive a free copy of our
"Guide to African Novels."

Archives

Submit to Ouida Books’ New Imprint on Technology in Africa

Ouida Books is Currently Accepting Submissions for Her New Imprint LWM (2)

Lagos-based publishing press Ouida Books is accepting submissions for its new imprint LWM. LMW is the third addition to the […]

Wayétu Moore Announces New Novel Exploring Mami Wata Mythology

Wayétu Moore Announces New Novel Exploring Mami Wata Mythology

Liberian-American author Wayétu Moore is staying busy and productive. Barely a year since the release of her widely praised memoir […]

Tsitsi Dangarembga Petitions Parliament of Zimbabwe for Removal of Health Minister Obadiah Moyo

Tsitsi Dangarembga Obadiah Moyo (1)

On June 19, 2020, Zimbabwe Health Minister Obadiah Moyo was arrested on corruption charges for engaging in an illegal 60 […]

Is This Us? The Many Holes in Nigerian-American Portrayal of the Nigerian Experience | Damilola Oyedele | Essay

Yvonne Orji Nigerian Americans about Nigeria

A few weeks ago, as I watched Yvonne Orji explain Nigerian slang to her audience, feelings I couldn’t immediately name […]

The Meaning of Guernica | Umar Abubakar Sidi | Poetry

Guernica Umar Abubakar Sidi poetry (1)

  Guernica Celebration of modern fascism Horrific devastation in the Basque town of Guernica Monochrome grisaille Crawling analysis of the […]

#WeTurnToBooks: An Instagram Live Series | Ayesha Harruna Attah

Attah 2

Over the course of Brittle Paper‘s #WeTurnToBooks series, we’ve had eye-opening conversations on Instagram Live with hugely popular novelists like […]

Thanks for signing up!

Never miss out on new posts. Subscribe to a digest, too:

No thanks, I only want the monthly newsletter.