Deadline Extended: Kwani?-SLS Writing Workshop Collaboration


Deadline Extended: Kwani?-SLS Writing Workshop Collaboration


Kwani Trust would like to announce a series of writing workshops to be held incollaboration with the Summer Literary Seminars (SLS) between 7th-13th December, 2016. The writing sessions will be held at the Kwani? Gardens led by Kenyan writers Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor, Billy Kahora and visiting writing SLS Faculty, Professor Mikhail Iossel and writer Josip Novakovich.  

Writers are invited to submit a sample of recent fiction of not more than 3000 words (either short story or novel excerpt) they’ve written. Please send material to with the subject line "SLS/Kwani? Application"

Sessions are planned for 6th, 8th, 12th and 13th December. Based on Faculty preference on what they would like to engage with participants. Writers will also be asked to bring queries on their current writing.   

Submissions for the workshop should include name, cell number and confirmation of ability to attend all days of the workshop.   

All fiction excerpts should be double-spaced and in Times New Roman font, 12 point font size. Successful candidates will be advised of their acceptance by 5th December 2016. Names of participants will be published on the Kwani? website. 



Billy Kahora’s short fiction and creative non-fiction has appeared in Chimurenga, McSweeney’s, Granta Online, Internazionale and Vanity Fair and Kwani?. He has written a non-fiction novella titled The True Story Of David Munyakei and was highly commended by the 2007 Caine Prize judges for his story Treadmill Love; his story Urban Zoning was shortlisted for the prize in 2012, The Gorilla’s Apprentice in 2014. He wrote the screenplay for Soul Boy and co-wrote Nairobi Half Life, which won the Kalasha awards. He is working on a novel titled The Applications. A short story collection The Cape Cod Bicycle War and Other Youthful Follies will be released in 2017. He has been awarded Writers' fellowships in Italy, U.K, Germany and Denmark. He recently taught at the M.A in Creative Writing at Rhodes University and has taught writing workshops in East Africa for the last 10 years.

He is also Managing Editor of Kwani Trust and has edited 7 issues of the Kwani? journal and other Kwani? publications including Nairobi 24 and Kenya Burning. He is also a Contributing Editor with the Chimurenga Chronic. He has recently edited the Sci-Fi anthology Imagine 500 with Malawiian writers. He has been Kwani? Litfest Curator since 2008 and recently curated Kwani? Litfest 2015 Writers In Conversation: Beyond The Map Of English. Billy is a past recipient of the Chevening Scholarship and an Iowa Writer’s Fellowship. He has an M.Sc Creative Writing from University of Edinburgh, U.K and a Journalism and English degree from Rhodes University, South Africa.

Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor was born in Kenya. In 2015, her debut novel, Dust, won the most prestigious literary award in Kenya, the Jomo Kenyatta Prize for Literature, and was shortlisted for the inaugural FT/Oppenheimer Emerging voices Awards. In September 2015, she was appointed as one of seven roving global ambassadors by Kisumu county for its creative industries. 

Mikhail Iossel, the Leningrad-born author of the story collection Every Hunter Wants to Know (W.W. Norton) and co-editor of the anthologies Amerika: Russian Writers View the United States (Dalkey Archive, 2004) and Rasskazy: New Fiction from a New Russia (TinConcordia University in Montrea House, 2010), is a professor of English/Creative Writing at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada – and the founding director of the Summer Literary Seminars international program. Back in the Soviet Union, he worked as an electromagnetic engineer/submarine demagnetizer and as roller-coaster security guard, and belonged to the organization ofsamizdat writers, Club-81. He came to the US in 1986, and started writing in English in 1988. Among his awards are the Guggenheim, NEA and Stegner Fellowships. His stories, in English and in translation to a number of other languages, have appeared in, Guernica, The Literarian, Agni Review, The North American Review, Threepenny Review, Interia, Boulevard, Best American Short Stories, and elsewhere.

Josip Novakovich emigrated from Croatia to the United States at the age of 20. He has published a dozen books, including a novel, April Fool's Day (in ten languages), five story collections (Infidelities, Yolk, Salvation and Other Disasters, Heritage of Smoke, and Tumbleweed) and three collections of narrative essays as well as two books of practical criticism. His work was anthologized in Best American Poetry, the Pushcart Prize and O. Henry Prize Stories. He has received the Whiting Writer's Award, a Guggenheim fellowship, the Ingram Merrill Award and an American Book Award, and in 2013 he was a Man Booker International Award finalist. He teaches creative writing at Concordia University in Montreal. 

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