By Ogova Ondego
Published February 3, 2015
Published but little known African and Middle Eastern fiction writers have till April 10, 2015 to claim their fame and US$40 000 with their books from a new literary prize.
Dubbed Emerging Voices Awards and presented by The Financial Times of England in collaboration with OppenheimerFunds, the FT/OppenheimerFunds Emerging Voices Awards seeks to recognise artistic talent in African and Middle Eastern fiction literature.
Inviting submissions from all global publishers, the FT/OppenheimerFunds Emerging Voices Awards, that was launched on January 30, 2015, says the fiction award will be presented to a published work of fiction in English or published in English translation with no fewer than 20 000 words long and written by a national or passport holder of one of the eligible countries of Africa and the Middle East.
Only works published in print or digital form, or both, between January 1, 2014 and September 30, 2014 may be submitted. Self-published works are not accepted.
Eligible for the fiction award are residents or passport holders of Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo-Kinshasa, Congo-Brazzaville, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, West Bank and Gaza, Yemen and Zambia.
“The judges aim to reward those whose work shows outstanding talent and in some way furthers understanding of their region,” a media statement from the organisers says.”Finalists will be flown to attend a gala awards ceremony taking place at the New York Public Library on 5 October 2015. The winner in each category will receive a prize award of $40 000 and will also be featured in a post event magazine and videos profiled on ft.com.”
Also to be recognised and rewarded with US$40 000 prizes each are Latin American and Caribbean films and Asia-Pacific art.
The award for the best short Asia-Pacific film is for works directed by a passport holder of one of the eligible countries and completed or released for distribution between January 1, 2014 and March 31, 2015. Though the film can be in any language, it must have English subtitles if it is not in English. Additionally, the film must be up to 40 minutes long, including opening and closing credits.
Eligible for the Asia-Pacific film award are citizens of American Samoa, Cambodia, China, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Kiribati, Laos, Malaysia, Marshall Islands, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Mongolia, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Turkey, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Vietnam.
For the Latin America and the Caribbean Art award, an artist may submit up to four works, created during the last five years. The works can be, but are not limited to, paintings, drawings, photographs, sculptures, installations or mixed media. Submissions should be made in the form of high-quality digital photographs or films. Submissions from galleries on an artist’s behalf are welcome.
Eligible for the art award are residents or citizens of Argentina, Belize, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Venezuela.