The Morland Writing Scholarships 2018 shortlist has been announced today with twenty writers from ten African countries in the running.
The Morland Writing Scholarship is an annual award given to African writers to enable them to work on a manuscript over a year without worrying about an income. Writers awarded a fiction scholarship will each receive £18,000, paid over the course of a year to allow them to take time off to write the book they have proposed. Non-fiction writers may be given £27,000 over the course of eighteen months, if they need to do additional research.
Some of the previous recipients of the scholarship now its fifth year include names like Elnathan John, Percy Zvomuya, Doreen Baingana, Abdul Adan, Noo Saro-Wiwa, Akwake Emezi, and Lidudumalingani Mgqombothi. Of these, only four have produced work from their scholarship; Yewande Omotoso with The Women Next Door, Karen Jennings with Travel With My Father, Simone Haysom with The Last Words of Rowan Du Preez and Tony Mochama with 2063 – Last Mile Bet.
Speaking about the process, Miles Morland said, “Choosing the shortlist seems to get harder every year. We had fewer bad entries this year and the good ones are exceptionally good. We had over 550 entries, our highest number to date, with writers applying from 27 countries.”
“I can’t think of anywhere else in the world that could produce a shortlist with such energy, imagination and originality. I’d like to see more of the humour for which countries like Nigeria are famous but apart from that the shortlist has just about everything, an astonishing variety,” he added.
Those in the running for the scholarship include a Caine Prize winner, an Etisalat Prize shortlistee, a multiple Burt Award winner, and a Golden Baobab Prize winner. The full list is;
- Heran Abate – Ethiopia.
- Pwaangulongii Dauod – Nigeria.
- Edwige Dro – Cote D’Ivoire.
- Dare Segun Falowo – Nigeria.
- Muthoni Gichuru – Kenya.
- Shubnum Khan – South Africa.
- Jacqui L’Ange – South Africa.
- Idza Luhumyo – Kenya.
- Sibabalwe Masinyana – South Africa.
- Marcelle Mateki Akita – Ghana.
- Howard Me-Bug – Cameroon.
- Pulane Mpondo – South Africa.
- Wairimu Muriithi – Kenya.
- Siphiwe Ndlovu – Zimbabwe.
- Olufunke Ogundimu – Nigeria.
- Makena Onjerika – Kenya.
- Mary Ononokpono – Nigeria.
- Yovanka Paquete Perdigao – Guinea.
- Hassan Santur – Somalia.
- Kola Tubosun – Nigeria
The judges, with Ellah Wakatama Allfrey from Zimbabwe in the chair, assisted by Femi Terry from Sierra Leone, and Muthoni Garland from Kenya, will meet on November 26th to select the 2018 Scholars. Their names will be announced shortly afterwards.