Awards Fiction Nonfiction Poetry

Isele Prizes 2023 longlist announced.

The longlists for the Isele Prizes 2023 were announced on Tuesday, February 21, 2023.

The Isele Prizes were founded to celebrate the best of short stories, poetry, and essays by writers published in the Ukamaka Olisakwe founded Isele Magazine in 2022. They are split into three categories – short stories, poetry, and essays, and each category is judged by a panel of two judges. Winners in the first edition were Esther Ifesinachi Okonkwo, Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike, and Nora Nneka.

For 2023, the Isele team picked from 160 works in fiction, poetry, and essays with in-house judges agreeing that the works on these lists captured their mission: to provide a platform for works that hold a mirror to our society. Those on the longlist this year are;

The Isele Short Story Prize

  • Master Zambezi, Ola W. Halim
  • Pink Flower, Jennifer Dickinson
  • Millie Lorraine, Josephine Sarvaas
  • The Returnee, Michelle Enehiwealu Iruobe
  • Weaving, Yvonne Kusiima
  • Heart Weeds, Shaun Anthony McMichael
  • Potluck Jollof, Nnamdi Anyadu
  • When James Baldwin Came To Atlanta, Charles Stephens,
  • The Tenderness of Iron, Ishola Abdulwasiu Ayodele
  • The Baby Doesn’t Have A Name, Ahmad Adedimeji Amobi

The Isele Poetry Prize

  • In The Parking Lot, Alec Solomita
  • Four Poems, Echezonachukwu Nduka
  • Three Poems, Ber Anena
  • Reborn, Gary Beck
  • Two Poems, Salawu Olajide
  • Self-Portrait of Grief as Fire, Zaynab Bobi
  • Two Poems, EJ Schoenborn
  • Two Poems, Ashia Ajani
  • Pride, Hayden Dansky
  • At Night I Sing My Heads to Sleep, Matt Hart

The Isele Nonfiction Prize

  • Fall/Between Words, Kharys Laue
  • The Green Passport, Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto
  • My Street Food Lady, Zary Fekete
  • Lagos City Girls Never Pay For Pasta, Adaorah Oduah
  • Russian Doll, Mustapha Enesi
  • The Slipping Away, Chinonso Nzeh
  • Words: On the Linguistic Indoctrination of a Woman, Cindy DiTiberio
  • Short Essay on Music, Adedayo Agarau
  • The Wonder of Childhood, Chimezie Chika
  • Young, Bald, and Woman, Nike Onwu

The shortlists will be announced on March 21 before the winner is revealed on April 26.

By James Murua

This blog is run by James Murua a Nairobi, Kenya based lover of books.

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