The Advisory Board for The Nigeria Prize for Literature released the shortlist of 11 drawn from 287 books in the running for the 2022 edition of the prize, focused on poetry.
The literature prize is sponsored by Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) with a cash award of $100,000.
The 11 books on the longlist, in alphabetical order by the title of the books, are: Augusta’s Poodle by Ogaga Ifowodo; Coming Undone As Stitches Tighten, by Iquo DianaAbasi; Dispossessed, by James Eze; Ife Testament, by Olusegun Adekoya; Memory and the Call of Waters, by S. Su’eddie Agema; Nomad, by Romeo Oriogun; The Lilt of The Rebel, by Obari Gomba; The Love Canticles, by Chijioke Amu Nnadi; Wanderer Cantos, by Remi Raji;Yawns and Belches, by Joe Ushie; and Your Crib, My Qibla, by Saddiq Dzukogi.
The list was presented to the Advisory Board by the Chairman, Panel of Judges for this year’s prize, Sule Emmanuel Egya, a professor of African Literature and Cultural Studies at Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida University, Lapai, Niger State. Other judges are Toyin Adewale-Gabriel and Dike Chukwumerije. Adewale-Gabriel is a poet and fiction writer.Dike Chukwumerije is a Spoken Word and Performance Poet and an award-winning author.
The Judges described the longlist of 11 as the best of contemporary Nigerian Poetry, rich in experimentation with language, style and theme.
Accepting the recommended longlist, the Advisory Board commended the thorough work done by the judges. Reacting on behalf of the Board, Professor Akachi Adimora- Ezeigbo, the chairman, said the quality of work in the list shows that a lot of scrutiny and work went into selecting deserving poets who have distinguished themselves by the quality of their submissions.
The judges will also continue adjudication on the 87 entries for The Nigeria Prize for Literary Criticism, which runs concurrently with The Nigeria Prize for Literature. The literary criticism prize carries a monetary value of N1 million.
The Nigeria Prize for Literature rotates yearly amongst four literary categories – prose fiction, poetry, drama, and children’s literature.
A shortlist of three is expected in September. A winner, if any, will be announced by the Advisory Board in October.