Next Weekend in London: Africa Writes 2015

by - 20:54

Next weekend I'll be at the British Library in London enjoying the wonderfulness that is Africa Writes

Over the course of 3 days, the Royal African Society will return with its annual (African) literature and book festival. This year Africa Writes turns 4 and - I didn't even think this was possible - but it looks even more exciting than in the previous years!!!! From the headline acts - In Conversation with Ben Okri and an evening of inspiring books with Hannah Pool - to a host of free events, here are some of the many free sessions I am looking forward to attending next weekend.  

African Creative Non-Fiction (Saturday 4 July, 14:30-15:30) with Ellah Wakatama Allfrey  in conversation with four non-fiction writers - Pede Hollist, Jackie Kay, Kwasi Kwarteng and Noo Saro Wiwa - where they will look at the creative possibilities of non-fiction. 

The 2015 Caine Prize Conversation (Saturday 4 July, 16:45 - 17:45) where the five shortlisted writers will be in conversation with 2009 winner E.C Osondu and Guardian First Book award winner Petina Gappah. 

New Nigerian Fiction (Sunday 5 Jul, 12:15 - 13:15) launching four debut novels - A. Igoni Barret's Blackass, Irenosen Okojie's Butterfly, E.C. Osondu's This House is Not for Sale, and Obinna Udenwe's Satans and Shaitans. These 4 authors will be in conversation with Ike Anya on their new releases and what new Nigerian fiction is. I'm just going to say upfront - a lot of books will be bought, so I better not forget my book bag :).

The Place of Literary Magazines in African Literature (Sunday 5 July, 13:30 - 14:30) with editors from SCARF, Sable, Kwani?, Chimurenga Chronic and Jalada, and chaired by Nana Yaa Mensah of New Statesman, this session reflects on the form and influence of literary magazines for African writing today. 

A stage reading of Sunday by Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor (Sunday 5 July, 16:00 - 17:00). Same-sex marriage was declared legal across the US on Friday, facebook is celebrating pride with profile pictures, and Pride was yesterday in London. Seen through the eyes of a family based in London, Sunday is a powerful exploration of love between Nigerian women, sexuality and religion. 

PS. This is just a preview of some of the awesomeness that will be happening next weekend in London. Head over to the Africa Writes website for the full programme.

PPS. I've got a pair of tickets for Friday's event - African Books to Inspire - which I'm just waiting to give away :). 

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