By Delali Kumapley
Published September 11, 2014
In the run up to their unveiling of winners on November 13, 2014, the Golden Baobab Prizes for African Children’s Literature that considers unpublished stories written by African citizens for prizes, have on September 11, 2014 announced the entries that made it to their longlist for 2014. The shortlist will be announced on October 30, 2014.
Selected from 210 entries received from 13 countries across the continent, this longlist of 14 stories showcases what are considered to be some of the finest African writers and African children’s stories today. Ghana and South Africa have four stories each. Others on the list are Egypt, Kenya, Zimbabwe and Nigeria. The longlist represents stories submitted to the Golden Baobab Prize for Picture Books and the Golden Baobab Prize for Early Chapter Books. No story from the Golden Baobab Prize for Rising Writers made it to the 2014 longlist.
Entries submitted to the Golden Baobab Prizes go through an incredibly exhaustive evaluation process. We have a team of about thirty people from all over Africa and around the world that read and score each story. A winning story for the Golden Baobab Prizes gets evaluated at most six times by different readers. This year’s longlist represents a very strong crop of African writers.
Now in its sixth year, the Golden Baobab Prizes were established in July 2008 to inspire the creation of enthralling African children’s stories by African writers. The prizes have to date received nearly 2 000 stories from all over Africa. In 2013, to increase its support for the African children’s literature industry, the organisation, Golden Baobab, introduced the brand new Golden Baobab Prizes for African Illustrators. This prize will complement Golden Baobab’s efforts in literature by discovering and celebrating Africa’s most exciting artists and illustrators who are creating images to tell stories to children.
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“Golden Baobab is dedicated to the mission of championing the finest African stories for children and celebrating the people who create these stories,” says Deborah Ahenkorah, Golden Baobab’s Executive Director. “In 2014, we dedicated US$20 000 to our prizes alone. We hope to do even more. We are wildly encouraged by the promise we see in the 2014 longlist.”
The shortlist for the Golden Baobab Prizes for African literature will be announced on October 30, 2014. The winners for the Golden Baobab Prizes for Literature as well as the winners of Golden Baobab Prizes for Illustrators will be announced on November 13, 2014.
Below are the titles and writers on the 2014 longlist:
Early Chapter Book Prize
Ricky DankwaAnsong (Ghana) – KwekuAnanse: The Tale of the Wolf and the Moon
Jayne Bauling (South Africa) – The Saturday Dress
Mamle Wolo (Ghana) – Flying through Water
Mary Okon Ononokpono (Nigeria) – Talulah the Time Traveller
Bontle Senne (South Africa) – The Monster at Midnight
Hillary MolenjeNamunyu (Kenya) – Teddy Mapesa and the Missing Cash
Dina Mousa (Egypt) – The Sunbird and Fatuma.
Picture Book Prize
Katherine Graham (South Africa) – The Lemon Tree
Aleya Kassam (Kenya) – The Jacaranda Tree
Kwame Aidoo (Ghana) – The Tale of Busy Body Bee
Mandy Collins (South Africa) – There is a Hyena in my Kitchen
Mike Mware (Zimbabwe) – The Big Ball
Shaleen Keshavjee-Gulam (Kenya) – Malaika’s Magical Kiosk
Portia Dery (Ghana) – Grandma’s List.