Troy Onyango

Nyanza Literary Festival 2017 seeks your submissions (East Africa only)

The Nyanza Literary Festival 2017 which is set to happen in the middle of the year seeks your submissions.

The Nyanza Literary Festival started last year and it was an interesting concept that was done by a team led by Kenyan born New York based Jakki Kerubo. The festival aimed to elevate engagement in the arts in Nyanza Province, Kenya, through an annual literary contest and workshops. So those who made the cut off from the call out that was made then headed out to Kisumu in Kenya to take part in a workshop before the winners were announced.

In the first year, winners were selected in two of the three categories with Troy Onyango going home with the prose title and Redscar K’Oyuga Macodindo getting the poetry nod. The few screenplays entered were deemed not good enough for awarding. There was a bit of controversy that emerged as the poetry winner emerged as a serial plagiarist and they were forced to rescind that win.

The second edition of the festival is already in production and the writing competition is now open for submissions. The theme of this year’s contest is “Freedom.” Freedom. We all want it. We all seek it–sometimes at a price we didn’t consider when we first began our quest. The desire for freedom has launched world wars and caused the demise of structures we once upheld. We’d like to see stories that cover the quest for freedom as it relates to work and family. Contest winners in the categories of Fiction, Screenplays/Plays, and Poetry will win $500 each.

In addition, the winning submissions will be published in an anthology. * The complete guidelines for the 2017 contest are as follows:

Deadline: April 30, 2017
Send submissions to:

Eligibility: Only previously unpublished work written in English will be accepted. Past winners are not eligible. All applicants should be current or former residents of the Western Kenya/ formerly Nyanza region; or residents of the East African regions surrounding Lake Victoria (Entebbe, Kampala, Jinja, Bukoba, Mwanza, Musoma).

Format: All entries should be submitted in a standard type face, 12pt font and attached as a .pdf or .doc format.

For fiction: ONE short story or novel excerpt, maximum 25 (double-spaced) pages per entry.

For screenplay: ONE screenplay excerpt, maximum 50 (double-spaced) pages per entry.

For poetry: No more than SIX poems per entry, up to 10 pages total. Entrants may submit to only one category. In your subject line, please include your name and type of submission (short story, novel excerpt, poetry, screenplay etc.) e.g. Jane Owiso – Poetry Include your complete contact information (name, address, telephone, email address) on a cover page of the manuscript. Include proof of residency.

Passports and National IDs are acceptable forms of identification. Please note that NALIF does not condone plagiarism. Any plagiarized work will be disqualified. More details, including the judges, date, place and time of the award ceremony, will be announced at a later date.

So lads and lasses from East Africa you have three months to polish off and send off your work to the organisers. Good luck. Please send original work please. You WILL be busted and we all end up looking stupid for nothing



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2 responses to “Nyanza Literary Festival 2017 seeks your submissions (East Africa only)”

  1. JULIUS KESSY avatar

    A very good initiative. I see it has covered some parts of Tanzania-Bukoba, Mwanza and Musoma but we wish to see it covering the whole East African Region. Keep up the good work guys!

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