Friday, October 23, 2015


The Abuja Writing Workshop, run by Nigerian writer Elnathan John has been running since 2013 as a one-day short prose workshop for twenty participants mostly resident in Abuja. In 2014, 60 persons applied to be part of this workshop in Abuja. The workshop is also proud to have participants who have gone on to publish books of their own. Co-facilitators have included award winning Nigerian author and journalist Abubakar Adam Ibrahim.  

In 2015 the Abuja Writing Workshop is expanding to accept participants from all across the country. This year the focus is on SATIRE as a form of writing and political and social commentary that has seen renewed interest especially online. Globally, satire has come into public debate especially with the killing of staff at the French satirical publication Charlie Hebdo. Perhaps more than ever before, people are beginning to have a global conversation about the role of satire in public affairs. More and more satirists are pushing the boundaries and taking on entities like corporations, governments and even the so-called Islamic State. In Nigeria, there certainly is an appetite for deep sarcasm online in discussing politics. Many who do this are not even aware that what they do can be called satire and be sharpened and channeled to achieve thoughtful, hard-hitting critique of politics in Nigeria. It is this inadvertent interest in satire that this workshop seeks to exploit and possibly hone. 

If you are interested in writing SATIRE, there will be a two-day workshop from Friday November 27, 2015 to Saturday November 28, 2015 for ten selected participants. The focus of this workshop will include:
1.     Understanding the news and the issues that become material for satire
2.     Understanding the building blocks of effective satire
3.     Learning the different possible forms of satire
4.     Becoming acquainted with other satire traditions around the world
5.     Understanding the power of satire and channeling that power for effect
6.     Identifying and connecting with other satirists in Nigeria and Africa

The workshop will be held in Abuja, Nigeria. The workshop is free. All selected participants will have their travel and accommodation costs covered for the duration of the workshop. Participants will be expected to commit to staying for the entire program. Arrival will be on Friday, November 27. THIS WORKSHOP IS NOT OPEN TO PERSONS BELOW THE AGE OF 18 AT THE TIME OF APPLICATION. 

To apply, send an original sample of satire and an application letter, each not exceeding ONE-PAGE to with the subject, "Workshop Application" no later than 10th November, 2015. The shorter, the better. As there are only 10 slots and selection will be based on the writing sample, send in what you think best represents your work. Only selected participants will be contacted. 

The workshop will feature a guest facilitator and award winning journalist, writer and satirist Tolu Ogunlesi as well as award winning writer and US based creative writing teacher Chinelo Okparanta.

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