AFRICAN fantasy authors are preparing to celebrate their nominations for the literary NOMMO Awards.
The NOMMO Awards are literary awards presented by The African Speculative Fiction Society, that aims to recognise works of mythical, science fiction, horror or alternative historic fiction by Africans.
The literary award is named after the Malian mythological creature known as a Nommo, an amphibious being with a cosmological perspective on mastery.
Nigeria’s Abi Daré, South African Lauren Beukes, and Kenya’s Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, among others, were shortlisted in categories such as “Best Novel”, “Best Short Story” , “Best Novella” and “Best Graphic Novel”.
New York Times best seller Abi Daré’s debut novel The Girl With The Louding Voice written in Nigerian Pidgin English, has been nominated for “Best Novel”, alongside Lauren Beukes’ UnGirls.
Another nominee for “Best Novel” is Akwaeke Emezi, whose work is the psychologically-charged novel The Death of Vivek Oji. Emezi’s nomination comes after making history as the first non-binary trans woman to be nominated for the literature award, The Women’s Prize.
Kenyan critical thinker Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o has his latest body of work The Perfect Nine, written in Gikuyu, nominated for Best Novel”, alongside Ben Okriand and his riveting novel Freedom Artist.
In the “Best Short Story” category, Zimbabwean writer Shanice Ndlovu has been nominated for her work “A Water Heart”. Past winner Tochi Onyebuchi’s Rebel Hearts has been listed once more for “Best Novel”, alongside another one of Beukes’ works titled Afterland.
The Nommo Awards long list also has a number of queer voices as nominees in the “Best Graphic Novel”category. The African Speculative Fiction Society is known for its continuous upliftment and acknowledgement of queer authors and artists in the graphic novel industry.
The Nommo Long List has duly recognised queer voices for the visually encapsulating comic book Meanwhile…, which grabbed a comfortable spot in the “Best Graphic Novel” category. The shortlist will be announced at the end of May, and voting will commence shortly afterwards.