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Africa’s Biggest Literary Award Winners of 2013

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Source: somaliweyn.org

UNPUBLISHED POETRY

Brunel University African Poetry Prize is a literary award aimed at the development, celebration and promotion of poetry from Africa; sponsored by Brunel University (London) and partnered by Commonwealth Writers, the Africa Centre (UK), and the African Poetry Book Fund (USA). It comes with a $3,000 honorarium. It is aimed at unpublished poets with a manuscript of ten poems. warsan shire Winner: British/Somalian, Warsan Shire (born 1988 in Kenya) was presented with Brunel University's inaugural African Poetry Prize on 30th April 2013. She was chosen from a shortlist of six candidates out of a total 655 entries. October 2013, Shire was also announced as the first Young Poet Laureate for London. Her works include - the poem "For Women Who Are Difficult to Love" and Teaching My Mother How To Give Birth (2011), a poetry pamphlet.   PUBLISHED SHORT STORY The Caine Prize for African Writing, described as Africa’s leading literary award, is an annual literary award for the best original short story by an African writer, published in the English language. The Caine prize is supported by four African winners of the Nobel Prize for Literature acting as patrons: Wole Soyinka, Nadine Gordimer, Naguib Mahfouz and J. M. Coetzee. And it comes with a £10,000 prize money. [caption id="attachment_5634" align="aligncenter" width="460"]Tope Folarin Source: static.guim.co.uk[/caption] Winner: Nigeria’s Tope Folarin (born in Ogden, Utah, U.S.A.) was announced on Monday 8th July as the winner of the 2013 Caine Prize for African Writing at a dinner at the Bodleian Library in Oxford for his short story entitled ‘Miracle.’ Tope is also a recipient of writing fellowships from the Institute for Policy Studies and Callaloo, and he serves on the board of the Hurston/Wright Foundation. Tope was educated at Morehouse College, and the University of Oxford, where he earned two Master's degrees as a Rhodes Scholar. He now lives and works in Washington, DC.   PUBLISHED BOOK The Nigeria Prize for Literature is an award sponsored by Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited in partnership with the Nigerian Academy of Letters, aimed at making known to readers, publishers, booksellers and distributors, literary critics and reviewers, the latest achievements of the best writers in Nigeria; which comes with a $100,000 prize money, making it the largest African literary prize and the 25th richest literary prize in the world. [caption id="attachment_5635" align="aligncenter" width="683"]Tade Ipadeola source: writeparagraphs.blogspot.com[/caption] Winner: Lawyer and poet, Tade Ipadeola (born September 1970 in Ibadan, Nigeria) emerged the winner of the coveted 2013 NLNG Literary Prize, October 2013 with his book of poetry, The Sahara Testaments, beating a total of 201 books. Tade has published three volumes of poetry - A Time of Signs (2000) and The Rain Fardel (2005). In 2009, he won the Delphic Laurel in Poetry with his poem “Songbird” in Jeju, South Korea.   OTHER NOTABLE WINNERS
  • Nigeria’s Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie won the 2013 The Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize (a biennial award) for her novel “Americanah”.
  • Nigeria’s E.E. Sule is the 2013 Commonwealth Book Prize Regional Winner for Africa for his novel “Sterile Sky”.
  • Uganda’s Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi is the 2013 Kwani? Manuscript Project (a new literary prize for unpublished fiction by African writers) Winner for her novel “The Kintu Saga.”
  • Mozambican, Mia Couto was awarded the 25th Camões Prize and is also shortlisted for the Neustadt International Prize 2014 for his literary merit. The Camões Prize is the most important literary prize for the Portuguese language, often regarded as the Portuguese equivilant of the Nobel Prize; its prize money is a €100,000, making it among the richest literary prizes in the world.
  • Morocco’s Fouad Laroui won the 2013 Prix Goncourt de la Nouvelle (a prestigious French literature prize given by the académie Goncourt to the author of the best and most imaginative short story) for his novel “L'étrange affaire du pantalon de Dassoukine.
  • Kenya’s Tony Mochama a.k.a Smitta, who is a columnist for the Standard Media Group  emerged winner of the 2013 Burt Award for Literature (a literary prize that recognizes excellence in young adult fiction from Tanzania, Ethiopia, Ghana and Kenya, with a prize money - ksh795000) for his book, “Meet the Omtitas.”
NB: The Etisalat Prize for Literature (which was created by Etisalat Nigeria in 2013) is slated to announce its winner February 2014. The winner receives a cash prize of £15,000, a book tour, a Samsung Galaxy Note, a Montblanc Meisterstück and a fellowship at the University of East Anglia (UK).   -By Olusola Agbaje 

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