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Kwani? successfully launched its first session of the Writer’s Forum this Saturday at the British Council Offices on Nairobi’s Upper Hill. Attended by 18 participants that included writers, academics and other artists the discussions were facilitated by writers, Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor, Dayo Forster, dancer and University of Nairobi, Professor Suki Mwendwa and filmmaker Olivier Lechien Dr Kisero Tunai and Garnett Olouch Olunya were also present.

Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor engaged participants in an interactive discussion on issues of identity. All writers talked about the three main challenges that face them in launching a writing career. Professor Suki Mwendwa questioned the idea of the ‘African Writer’ and writers gave their different ‘two cents’ in the issue. Interesting ideas about rhythm in writing were also raised.

Most writers confessed to procrastination, time wasting and major distractions.       

Kwani Trust sent invitations to tens of writers from all over Kenya to become part of a revolving writer’s forum last month. And if the first session is anything to run by the Forum should be successful. The Forum will be running for 8 sessions and will take place twice a month on Saturday mornings from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the British Council.

The Forum will provide a space for established, new and aspiring writers to discuss craft, and also build practical associations among themselves that can hopefully give birth to a Writer’s Association. The original idea for the Forum came from Caine Prize Winner, Yvonne Adhiambo,  Owuor and developed after a series of conversations between writers published in Kwani, friends of literature in Kenya and various academics.

Through its 3 journals and submissions Kwani has realized that there are many good writers out there who are willing to come out of the closet, but unable to because of the lack of a space to discuss their literary ambitions and make something of them.

The British Council kindly agreed to provide a venue for the Writer’s Forum.

Watch this space for posting of actual debates that take place in the Writer’s Forum



Poetry reciters required


1)Must be able to analyse and critique poems

2)Create moods as expressed in POETRY piece/s

3)Be an actor/actress

4)Be from within Nairobi

-Application submission deadline 2nd July 2006

-Performance in august

For more info send email to


The Great American Poetry Show is a hardcover serial poetry anthology open year-round to submissions of poems in English on any subject and in any style, length and number.

Email poems only by one attachment to or mail your poems with a self-addressed stamped return envelope to The Great American Poetry Show, P.O. Box 69506, West Hollywood, California 90069. We have four editors and we can handle a lot of submissions. So please flood us with poems. If we do not accept your poems, please send us another group to go through.

Simultaneous submissions and previously published poems are welcome. Response time is usually 1-3 months. Each contributor receives one free copy of the volume in which his/her work appears. Volume 2 is scheduled to appear in 2007 if we have enough good poems (about 100); if not, we will wait until we do.

Please take a look at our website where you can preview Volume 1 of TGAPS and also purchase a copy. And take a look at our links page with hundreds of interesting sites to visit. We trade links. We also have a chat room for discussions about poetry and other literary topics. And please use our message board where anyone can post poetry news, reviews, essays, articles, and recommended books.

Larry Ziman
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The PER SESH Writing Program

PER ANKH, a cooperative association of friends committed to the development of high-quality writing and publishing in Africa, runs an annual 9-month writers’ workshop called PER SESH. Ancient Egyptian scribes trained for their calling at an institution called per sesh, the writers’ home, inside the House of Life. Though today we do not seek to imitate the ancestors, we value their commitment to the systematic sharing of theoretical knowledge and practical skills. So we have built a home for writers in the seaside village of Popenguine, Senegal, in West Africa, and given it the ancient name, per sesh.

There, at our nine-month annual residential workshop, writers learn, teach and practice craft techniques from story idea to finished book. Simultaneously, per sesh provides hands-on practice in the use of advanced computer hardware and software for such writing and publishing tasks as plot generation, word processing, page layout, cover design, contract negotiation and royalty accounting.

If you’re a graduate student or literature/writing faculty member, aged 25 to 40, committed to the practice and teaching of writing as a profession, and interested in participating in the October 2006 – July 2007 sessions, you are invited to apply for one of our 9-month residential fellowships funded jointly by the Ford Foundation (Dr. Adhiambo Odaga) and TrustAfrica (Dr. Akwasi Aidoo).

To apply, send

            ·           a one-page application letter; 

            ·           a one-page curriculum vitae;

            ·           two letters of recommendation from past lecturers;

            ·           an endorsement from your department head; and

            ·           a 5,000- to 10,000-word sample of your best fiction; to

The Coordinator

per sesh writing program

b. p. 2, popenguine


Deadline for receipt of applications: 30 July 2006.


        Email inquiries to: