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L-R: The Imagine 500 anthology, Tade Thompson’s Rosewater, and Nnedi Okorafor’s Binti.

The African Speculative Fiction Society (ASFS) is an organisation of around 180 writers, editors, comic & graphic artists, and filmmakers working “in the fields of speculative fiction such as fantasy, science fiction, stories that draw on traditions, horror and philosophical fiction.” Founded in 2016, the novelist Sofia Somatar described it as “a space for African speculative fiction writers to network, organize, learn from each other, and debate,” one that “will promote an ongoig conversation, led by artists, on Africa’s literatures of the imagination.” It is, in the words of its chief spokesperson Chinelo Onwualu, “a place where writers, readers, and scholars can come together to find information, connect with each other, and act as watchdogs for their collective interests.”

The ASFS’s broad definition of speculative fiction includes horror, slipstream, and interstitial stories, and those based on traditional beliefs and alternate history, as well as “any distinctively African forms that may develop.”

To create visibility for literature drawing from these fields, the Society created the $3,000 Nommo Awards, the continent’s only prizes for speculative fiction. The Awards, administered by the novelist and academic Geoff Ryman, are given in four categories: the US$1000 Best Novel named after the Awards benefactor Tom Ilube, the US$500 Best Novella, the US$500 Best Short Story, and the US$1000 Best Comic or Graphic Novel. The 2019 shortlists were announced in May.

To help its work, the Society is open to donations:

We have a number of great ideas we’d like to implement—an anthology, partnerships with allied bodies, and of course the Nommo Awards ceremony itself. To do that we need funds and we need them now while we are re-establishing ourselves as a registered organization.

We do not charge a membership fee but we do have running costs for both the ASFS and the Nommo Awards. The Awards still have transport, publicity, and production costs. Help by donating to the African Speculative Fiction Society and the Nommo Awards to get the profile African speculative fiction deserves.

Any sum, small or large, from members and non-members will be very welcome. You can contribute to the fund via Paypal using this identifying email: 200africans@gmail.com.

If you do not have cards, or have other queries, please email the ASFS at info@africansfs.com.

Visit its Donation page.

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About Otosirieze Obi-Young

View all posts by Otosirieze Obi-Young
Otosirieze Obi-Young, writer and journalist, 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 has an M.A. in African Studies and a combined honours B.A. in History & International Studies and English & Literary Studies, both from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He 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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