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NoViolet Bulawayo. Image from Etisalat.

NoViolet Bulawayo has been honoured with San Francisco State University’s 2018 Gina Berriault Award for Fiction. She received the Award in an April 9 event in the university themed “An Evening with NoViolet Bulawayo” and co-presented by 14 Hills Press.

Here is what she wrote on Facebook:

deeply honored to receive the Gina Berriault Award for Fiction by San Francisco State University Department of Creative Writing. i hope to read a bit from my new favorite book, America Is Not The Heart by Elaine Castillo. friends in the bay area, if you have nothing better to do tomorrow please come celebrate with me while i’m here.

It has been quite a while since we last heard from NoViolet. Her last publication is the short story “His Middle Name Was Not Jesus” (2016) in Granta, which made our best pieces of 2016 list. Late last year, though, the former Stegner Fellow at Stanford University was visible on social media advocating for Reading Zimbabwe, a digital initiative to promote knowledge in her country.

NoViolet, whose real name is Elizabeth Tshele, was shortlisted for the 2013 Man Booker Prize for her debut novel We Need New Names, making her the first black African woman and first Zimbabwean to be so honoured. The novel also received the Etisalat Prize for Literature, the Los Angeles Times‘ Art Seibendaum Award, and the Hemmingway Foundation/PEN Award.

Congratulations to NoViolet Bulawayo!

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OTOSIRIEZE is a writer, literary journalist, former academic, and Deputy Editor of Brittle Paper. A judge for the 2019 Gerald Kraak Award, he is an editor at 14, Nigeria’s first queer art collective which has published two volumes: WE ARE FLOWERS and THE INWARD GAZE. He is the curator of ART NAIJA SERIES, a sequence of themed e-anthologies of writing and visual art exploring different aspects of Nigerianness: ENTER NAIJA: THE BOOK OF PLACES (October, 2016) focuses on cities in Nigeria; WORK NAIJA: THE BOOK OF VOCATIONS (June, 2017) focuses on professions in Nigeria. His fiction has appeared in The Threepenny Review and Transition, and has been shortlisted for the Miles Morland Writing Scholarship and the Gerald Kraak Award, both in 2016, and a Pushcart Prize in 2015. He attended the 2018 Miles Morland Foundation Creative Writing Workshop. 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. He combined history and literature at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and taught English at Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu. When bored, the boy just Googles Rihanna. Find him at otosirieze.com, where he accepts editing and writing offers, or on Instagram or Twitter: @otosirieze.

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