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Bakwa, Cameroon’s leading Anglophone literary magazine, is open to submissions for its 8th issue, themed around “pain.” Submissions can be emailed to dzekashu@bakwa.org. The deadline is April 15.

Here is the call for submissions.

Writing about pain, some have said, is an easy way to get published. Topics surrounding pain seem to draw empathy or sympathy. But how easy is it to articulate pain? Pain is one of the few emotions no one wants to experience twice. It’s easy to think of physical pain, whereas emotional, mental and psychological pain are usually overlooked.

Bakwa Magazine, in its first issue for 2018, is looking for stories around pain. That pain is restricted many times to the individual makes us forget that whole communities, countries, and families can also experience pain, be it in the form of war, genocide or different forms of atrocities. There is no restriction to the number of times we should talk about pain. Why does it even exist? Can one ignore it? Where does it come from? Heartbreak, menstrual pain, is there a singular way pain feels?

Sometimes pain is like a web, it traps us. Do we really heal from it? Bakwa Magazine seeks fiction, nonfiction, photography and poetry that explore this theme beyond the ordinary perception of pain. Why must pain insist on being attended to? Do we easily recollect painful moments than happy moments? In societies that train men not to show pain, and in the 21st century where men are encouraged to allow their vulnerability to be unmasked, how does this affect how they process pain?

We want experimental writing that pushes the boundary of writing as we know it. We want thought pieces, deep and questioning, that challenge ‘pain as a megaphone to rouse a deaf world.’

Email submissions to dzekashu@bakwa.org

Deadline: April 15

Find out more HERE.

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About Otosirieze Obi-Young

View all posts by Otosirieze Obi-Young
Otosirieze Obi-Young is a writer, an academic, and Deputy Editor of Brittle Paper. His fiction has appeared in The Threepenny Review ("Mulumba," 2016), Transition ("A Tenderer Blessing," 2015), and in an anthology of the Gerald Kraak Award for which he was shortlisted ("You Sing of a Longing," 2017). His work has further been shortlisted for the Miles Morland Writing Scholarship in 2016 and a Pushcart Prize in 2015. He attended the 2018 Miles Morland Foundation Creative Writing Workshop. He is the curator of the ART NAIJA SERIES, a sequence of themed e-anthologies of writing and visual art exploring different aspects of Nigerianness. The first, ENTER NAIJA: THE BOOK OF PLACES (October, 2016), focuses on cities in Nigeria. The second, WORK NAIJA: THE BOOK OF VOCATIONS (June, 2017), focuses on professions in Nigeria. He studied History and Literature at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, is currently completing a postgraduate programme in African Studies and Pop Culture, and teaches English at Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu. He has completed a collection of short stories, YOU SING OF A LONGING, and is working on a novel. He is represented by David Godwin Associates literary agency. When bored, he just Googles Rihanna.

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I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

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