Two Nigerian writers, Lesley Arimah and Tochukwu Okafor have been shortlisted for the 2019 Caine Prize for African Writing for July.
The shortlisted persons were announced on May 20 and the competition is to feature stories that tackle “the ordinary in an extraordinary manner”.
It will also feature the celebration of the diversity of the African short-story writing tradition for the twentieth edition of the prize. The five-writer shortlist include authors from Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya and Nigeria.
Dr Peter Kimani, Chair of judges and Kenyan author of the award-winning novel ‘Dance of the Jakaranda’ announced the writers of the year.
The shortlisted writers for the 2019 Caine Prize are: Lesley Nneka Arimah (Nigeria) for ‘Skinned’, published in McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Issue 53 (2018).
Meron Hadero (Ethiopia) for ‘The Wall’, published in McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Issue 52 (2018); Cherrie Kandie (Kenya) for ‘Sew My Mouth’, published in ID Identity: New Short Fiction From Africa (2018).
Ngwah-Mbo Nana Nkweti (Cameroon) for ‘It Takes A Village Some Say’, published in The Baffler (2017). Tochukwu Emmanuel Okafor (Nigeria) for ‘All Our Lives’, published in ID Identity: New Short Fiction from Africa (2018).
According to the organiser, there will be a cash prize of £10,000 for the winning author and a travel award for each of the short-listed candidates.
The shortlisted candidates will also receive a prize of £500 and the winner will be invited to go to three literature festivals in Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria.
The shortlisted stories will be printed by New Internationalist in a special publication to mark the twentieth Caine Prize award dinner. It will be achieved through co-publishers in 16 African countries that have received a print-ready PDF free of charge.