Ghanaian author of short stories and speculative fiction Kojo Laing passed on April 20, 2017.
Kojo Laing, born as Bernard Kojo Laing in 1946, is one of the best know writing voices from West African nation with many works to his name. He emerged in the 1970s as a poet winning the National Poetry Prize Valco Award in 1976. He received attention both in his home country and internationally when he published his debut Search Sweet Country in 1986.
His second novel Woman of the Aeroplanes set in twinned villages in Ghana and Scotland was in 1988 followed by a poetry collection Godhouse in 1989. He has since written other novels like Major Gentl and Achimota Wars (1992) which won the Valco Award in 1993.
Also in his bibliography is Big Bishop Roko and The Altar Gangstars in 2006.
In his life, apart from the Valco awards, he was also awarded the national novel prize in 1985.
May this one of our pioneer writers, one of our best be remembered for his amazing contribution to the canon as he starts his new role as an ancestor.
Here are some of the tributes from his fellow writers and African literary organisations
#RIP Kojo Laing. A literary giant and linguistic innovator gone! #Ghana #Literature #KojoLaing
— Nii Ayikwei Parkes (@BlueBirdTail) April 23, 2017
Remember meeting Kojo Laing, in Elmina @CainePrize workshop 2015. He was lovely, incredibly intelligent and witty about me being late. RIP 😭
— Wanton Wonton (@efemiachela) April 22, 2017
Remembering Ghanaian novelist Kojo Laing today and his advice “Don’t listen to anyone!” at the Caine Prize workshop in Ghana 2015 #RIP pic.twitter.com/07crdrmO0z
— Caine Prize (@CainePrize) April 23, 2017
Kojo Laing is dead. Africas best novelist, by far. He died yesterday morning in Ghana. His masterworks will last forever. I mourn him.
— Binyavanga Wainaina (@BinyavangaW) April 22, 2017
“You have to be true to yourself, not necessarily to your reader.In a sense, you have to be authentic to your work.” ~ Kojo Laing #Ghana https://t.co/lbzdHrkxZp
— Jemila Abdulai (@jabdulai) April 23, 2017
Rest In Power Kojo Laing.