Ani Kayode Somtochukwu and Abubakar Adam Ibrahim.

The newly launched Hodler Prize worth 1.1 Bitcoin seeks to award the most important text of the year, and two African authors have made it to the shortlist. Nigerian writer Tolu Ogunlesi is a judge on this new fascinating prize centered around cryptocurrency.

The competition is open to all texts published, translated, performed or broadcast in English in the current year. Founded by writer Anthony van den Bossche, the Hodler Prize aims to highlight each author’s search for truth, whether available in bookshops, on screen or on stage. Submissions can include various genres such as novel, screenplay, poetry, essay, press article, opinion, art criticism, song, and speech.

The total worth of the Hodler Prize is 1.1 Bitcoin, divided equally between the winner and the 10-person jury, i.e. 0.1 Bitcoin per person. The winner will receive 0.1 BTC, roughly $4,378 USD at the moment.

The name of the prize comes from the term “hodler” in the Bitcoin community used to describe a person who stays invested at all costs. It embodies conviction over time, much like a iterary prize which rewards the quality of a text by betting on its ability to travel through time.

The 2023 Hodler Prize jury is composed of 9 eminent figures in the world of writing. Readers are the 10th voice of the jury, submitting their entries to the competition, then voting on the Hodler Prize social media. Along with Ogunlesi, this year’s jury includes Martin Bethenod, Emanuele Coccia, Chelsea E. Manning, Alex Marzano-Lesnevich, Rachel Monroe, Diego Ongaro, Adli Takkal-Bataille, and Vanessa Walters.

Each member of the jury proposed 2 texts (1 text in book format + 1 text broadcast on another medium). The public also submitted their choices. After several rounds of votes, we finally have the esteemed shortlist of 20 texts, of which Ani Kayode and Abubakar Adam Ibrahim are the African finalists:

Ordinary Notes by Christina Sharpe (Nonfiction). Find here.

The Alluvials by Alice Bucknell (Screenplay – Video Game). Find here.

Bottoms Up and the Devil Laughs: A Journey Through the Deep State by Kerry Howley (Nonfiction). Find here.

DAVE, Season 3, Episode 5 by Dave Burd (Screenplay – TV) Find here.

Blog of Arthur Hayes (Blog). Find here.

Fassbinder, Thousands of Mirrors by Ian Penman (Nonfiction). Find here.

And Then He Sang a Lullaby by Ani Kayode (Fiction). Find here.

Succession, Episode 9, Season 4, “Church and State” by Jesse Armstrong (TV Series). Find here.

When We Were Fireflies by Abubakar Adam Ibrahim (Fiction). Find here.

“Shadow on the Sun” by Sam Kriss (Fiction) Find here.

Monica by Daniel Clowes (Fiction). Find here.

“The View From My Window in Gaza” and “The Agony of Waiting for a Ceasefire that Never Comes” by Mosab Abu Toha (Nonfiction). Find here and here.

“I’m not a monster” by Josh Baker and Joe Kent (Podcast). Find here.

Pacifiction by Albert Serra (Film). Find here.

Doppelganger by Naomi Klein (Nonfiction). Find here.

SEC versus Grayscale by Judge Neomi Rao (US Court Decision). Find here.

“The ongoing blog” by Dennis Cooper (Blog). Find here.

“The sermon I didn’t want to write” by Delphine Horvilleur (Sermon). Find here.

Haaland v Brakeen (Supreme Court Decision). Find here.

The final vote and proclamation of the winner will take place on April 24, 2024 in Paris at the Hôtel Grand Amour. Stay tuned!