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The Miles Morland Writing Scholarships, the most prestigious end-of-the-year awards on the continent, are set to be open for submissions for 2018. An initiative of the Miles Morland Foundation, the awards offer a fiction scholarship of £18,000 to two, three or four writers over the course of twelve months, and a nonfiction scholarship of £27,000 to a single writer over the course of eighteen months. The funds are “paid…to allow them to take time off to write the book they have proposed.” Entries must be book proposals for only fiction and creative nonfiction which must not be less than 80,000 words when completed. The scholarship will be open for applications on 30 June 2018 and will close on 30 September 2018.

​The only mandatory requirement during the period of the scholarship is the submission of 10,000 new words. The other undertaking is considered a debt of honour:

Scholars are also asked to donate to the MMF 20% of whatever they subsequently receive from what they write during the period of their Scholarship. This includes revenues as a result of film rights, serialisations or other ancillary revenues arising from the book written during the Scholarship period. These funds will be used to support other promising writers. The 20% return obligation should be considered a debt of honour rather than a legally binding obligation.

The MMF does not accept proposals for collaborative writing or short story collections. The proposal should be for a completely new work, not a work in progress, and must be in English.

In an email to Brittle Paper, the Foundation Manager Mathilda Edwards stated:

We continue to be impressed by the quality of writing we receive and are pleased to see entry numbers increase each year. Last year over 500 people applied, we hope to receive even more applications this year.

We look forward to discovering the winners for 2018.

​GUIDELINES

All enquiries and submissions relating to the Morland Scholarships should be directed to scholarships@milesmorlandfoundation.com.

1. A submission of between 2,000 to 5,000 words as a Word document of work that has been published and offered for sale.

2. A description of between 400 – 1,000 words about the new book you intend to write. 

3. A scan of an official document showing that you, or both of your parents, were born in Africa.

4. A brief bio of between 200 – 300 words.

5. Please tell us how you heard about the Morland Writing Scholarships.

Deadline: 31 September 2018.

Previous winners of the Miles Morland Scholarships are: Tony Mochama, Doreen Baingana, and Percy Zvomuya in 2013; Yewande Omotoso, Simone Hayson, Ndinda Kioko, and Ahmed Khalifa in 2014; Fatin Abbas, Akwaeke Emezi, and Bolaji Ofin in 2015; Abdul Adan, Lidudumalingani Mqobothi, Ayesha Haruna Attah and Nneoma Ike-Njoku in 2016; and Eloghosa Osunde, Fatima Kola, Elnathan John, Bryony Rheam, and Alemseged Tesfai in 2017.

Since last year, the Miles Morland Foundation has organised a creative writing workshop facilitated by Giles Foden, author of The Last King of Scotland and professor of creative writing at the University of East Anglia, and Michela Wrong, author of In the Footsteps of Mr Kurtz and It’s Our Turn to Eat. Participants are chosen from among applicants for their scholarships.

For more information on how to apply, please see the Miles Morland Foundation Website.

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Otosirieze is deputy editor of Brittle Paper. He is a judge for the 2018/19 Gerald Kraak Prize and the 2019 Miles Morland Writing Scholarships. He is an editor at 14, Nigeria’s first queer art collective, which has published volumes including We Are Flowers (2017) and The Inward Gaze (2018). He is the curator of the Art Naija Series, a sequence of e-anthologies of writing and visual art focusing on different aspects of Nigerianness, including Enter Naija: The Book of Places (2016), which explores cities, and Work Naija: The Book of Vocations (2017), which explores professions. His fiction has appeared in The Threepenny Review and Transition. He has completed a collection of short stories, You Sing of a Longing, is working on a novel, and is represented by David Godwin Associates literary agency. He combined English and History at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, is completing a postgraduate degree in African Studies, and taught English at Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu. Find him at otosirieze.com, where he accepts writing and editing offers, or on Instagram or Twitter: @otosirieze. When bored, he Googles Rihanna.

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