Bada Murya, a Fellowship for Northern Nigerian Writers, Opens for Applications

The 6-month fellowship, which “invokes the power of narrative to shift perceptions,” is open to writers of poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and drama.
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Abubakar Adam Ibrahim is one of the recent literary successes from Northern Nigeria. Credit: Creative Africa.

Photo Credit: Abubakar Adam Ibrahim. Credit to Creative Africa.

Bada Murya, literally translated “Give Voice,” a six-month digital fellowship for writers from Northern Nigeria, is now open for applications.

The swelling population of young people across Northern Nigeria tends to be discussed in mainstream conversation in problematic terms: drug addled, unemployed and unemployable, canon fodder for extremist ideologies, etc. But there is a counter-narrative that situates the North’s youth bulge in the realm of its socio-economic potential, one that must be urgently centered.

Bada Murya invokes the power of narrative/storytelling to shift perceptions and facilitate accountability. It is designed to connect Northern conversations to a global audience in a way that economically empowers a new generation of storytellers committed to changing the narrative of the North, and also to explore storytelling as a tool for social change.

“There is a strong tradition of literary, cultural and artistic production from the North, and we are happy to contribute to it,” said Efe Paul Azino, creative director of Creative Africa, organizers of the fellowship. “For a region as beleaguered by stereotypes as it is by poor leadership or extremist ideologies, challenging the prevailing narrative is important.”

The Fellowship is open to writers of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction, as well as playwrights, and will be delivered over a period of six months, with three months of intense craft shaping and insight workshops, and three months of one-on-one mentorship, feedback culminating in a published chapbook and a special showcase at the 2021 edition of the Lagos International Poetry Festival.

Facilitators include Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, Ayisha Osori, Wana Udobang, Dike Chukwumerije, Titiilope Sonuga, and Efe Paul Azino. The fellowship is supported by the MacArthur Foundation.

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The Fellowship offers 10 selected Fellows:

– A six-month digital workshop including three months of craft shaping sessions and three months of one-on-one mentorship

– An opportunity to work on, and produce, an original work

– Publication in an anthology resulting from the fellowship

– Travel, accommodation and a stipend of N20,000 to visit Lagos in October 2021 for a special Fellows showcase at the 2021 edition of the Lagos International Poetry Festival


The Fellowship will begin in May 2021 and end in October 2021. The deadline for application is April 10th 2021.

Fellows will be required to:

– Attend six digital writing workshop sessions

– Attend one-on-one digital feedback sessions with mentors

– Produce two works of literature in their chosen genre (poetry, fiction, non-fiction, play writing)

– Be available to travel to Lagos in October 2021 for a three (3) day period


– The Fellowship is open to writers of poetry, fiction, non-fiction and play writing between the ages of 18 and 35

– Applicants must be of Northern Nigerian origin, but can be resident anywhere else

– The Fellowship has an 80% slot for women

Visit to apply.

Deadline: April 10.

Creative Africa
Creative Africa
Creative Africa is the organizer of the Bada Murya Fellowship and of the Lagos International Poetry Festival.

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