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Interview | Michael Kelleher, Director of the Windham-Campbell Prize, Talks Diversity and Literary Prizes

Michael Kelleher is the director of the Windham Campbell Prize, an annual prize awarded in recognition of a writer’s “extraordinary body of work.” Since its inception, the award, which comes with a $165,000 cash prize, has made good on its mission to embrace the diversity of the global literary community. In 2015, all three winners […]

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Interview | Alain Mabanckou Talks Tutuola, Exile, and His Love of Fashion

  When writer, Alain Mabanckou, mentioned that he had been exiled from his home country of Congo Brazzaville during a panel discussion at the recently concluded Ake Festival, I knew we needed to have a conversation about this. Spotting a print shirt, blue jeans, and brown fedora, it would have been hard to guess this […]

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Ake Festival Journal | Day 3 | by Nmadiuto Uche

Surprises. That is what I would remember the last day of the Ake Festival for. I was surprised to discover during the first book chat that the author of Lights Point Noire, Alain Mabanckou, has been exiled from his home country of Congo (Brazzaville) for more than six months and counting. Who would have thought […]

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Ake Festival Journal | Day 2 | by Nmadiuto Uche

By Day 2 of the Ake Arts & Book Festival, I realized that the best laid out plans can be put aside for impromptu conversations and human interactions. You see, Lola Shoneyin and her incredible team had succeeded in attracting literary rich minds to Abeokuta and there was a lot to talk about. Conversations from […]

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Ake Festival Journal | Day 1 | by Nmadiuto Uche

Was it with the full day of workshops by seasoned authors on Tuesday, November 15th ? Or the energetic musical concert that had us cheering and dancing simultaneously on Wednesday, November 16th? Ake Festival 2016 began witha trilogy of events that reached a crescendo in the morning of Thursday, November 17th during the culturally rich […]

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Ake Festival 2016 | A Musicaliterary Concert | by Nmadiuto Uche

History was made on Wednesday November 16, 2016 at the June 12 Cultural Center, Kuto, Abeokuta. For the first time, The Ake Arts & Book Festival team organized a concert featuring some of the smoothest voices in Nigeria. Lola Shoneyin, Director of the festival said this was going to be a fusion of music and […]

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Ake Festival 2016 | Q and A with Helon Habila and NoViolet Bulawayo | by Nmadiuto Uche

For five hours, we had been tutored by authors NoViolet Bulawayo and Helon Habila on dialogue and the perfect opening when writing fiction. The fiction workshop at Ake Festival, held on November 15, had beamed a light in a dark place of writing for the participants. All 25 of us had shared a sample of […]

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Ake Festival 2016 | Sarah Ladipo Manyika’s Writing Workshop | by Nmadiuto Uche

Sarah Ladipo Manyika’s novella Like a Mule Bringing Ice-Cream to the Sun is character driven. When the group of 25 participants at the 2016 Ake Fiction Workshop sat around Sarah on Tuesday afternoon for a lesson in using performance to explore a character’s voice, they did not expect the exercise she had in store for them. “Switch […]

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Kwame Dawes’s “Yard Boy”: A Powerful Poem for Our Moment

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Kwame Dawes recently wrote a poem titled “Yard Boy” that speaks to the recent events surrounding the death of George […]

Teju Cole’s Spotify Playlists Offer Musical Solace for These Times

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Among Teju Cole’s many talents is his ability to curate music that captures a mood or even the feel of […]

Petina Gappah to Write Play About the Censorship History of Dambudzo Marechera’s Novel Black Sunlight

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Petina Gappah recently announced that she was writing a play that focuses on “the 1982 banning and unbanning” of Dambudzo […]

Oh, Blessed Bri’Land | Jedah Mayberry | Fiction

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Bri’Land glistened at me, her brilliant display of pink sand shimmering in delight.  It would seem that I had finally, […]

Books That Go with Wine and Books That Don’t

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The beverages most associated with reading are tea and coffee. But many readers love to cozy up in bed with […]

In This House | Inok Rosemary | Poetry

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  In this house, we sift our words, Never letting the walls hear what they shouldn’t. The fear of their […]

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