In October last year I was blogged about Cameroon writer Imbolo Mbue who had signed a seven figure dollar deal for her new book The Longings of Jende Jonga. Its not every day that you hear that someone gets a deal with a big publisher or literary agent that leads to one getting much recognition (and dosh).
Well she isn’t the only one with that kind of luck. South African Masande Ntshanga writer first came to our attention when he won the inaugural PEN International new voices award in 2013 for the story Space. This year he followed through with a listing on both the Sunday Times Literary Awards longlist for his book The Reactive and a short list for the Caine Prize for Space again.
It looks like the writer’s book The Reactive has been picked up an international book deal with United States publisher Two Dollar Radio with an option for the film rights. The young man is going all the way.
Just like Ntshanga, Nigerian writer Diekoye Oyeyinka looks to be going places with his writing. The write who was first known to the work of African writing for his debut novel, Stillborn (my review), which I loved very much. The writer was recently signed up to international film and literary agency Pontas. The firm handles the works of some the the coolest authors out there like Susan Abulhawa (read my review of her awesome book Mornings In Jenin), Ghanaian Ayesha Harruna Attah and fellow Naija man Chigozie Obioma.
Potas representative Jessica Craig had a glowing opinion of Stillborn and said after reading it “I immediately had the sensation that I was in the hands of a very talented and distinctive storyteller and throughout the novel I was delighted by the vivid language and the captivating characters. It’s the first time I’ve absorbed so much about Nigeria in one book that beautifully and confidently weaves together so many different stories, characters, and events.”