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10 stories shortlisted for Intwasa

by Entertainment Reporter
29 Aug 2012 at 04:29hrs | Views
A TOTAL of 10 short stories have been shortlisted for the Intwasa Short Story Competition (Yvonne Vera Award) with eight from Bulawayo and the remaining from Harare. This year there were 81 short stories submitted for the competition, a 26 percent drop from last year's number of 110. There were 60 males and 21 females who entered the competition.

The competition was inaugurated in the first year of the festival and is an annual literary event seeking to promote original creative writing talent in English.

In 2011 the award was named the Yvonne Vera Award and carries a $500 cash prize.

In a statement Intwasa director Raisedon Baya said 44 percent of the entries were from Bulawayo and the rest were from other cities in the country.

He said as organisers they were impressed by the quality of stories submitted.

"Forty-four per cent of the entries were from Bulawayo, seventeen per cent from Harare with the rest coming from across Zimbabwe, with one entry from South Africa and one from Algeria. Sixty submissions were from males and twenty-one from females," said Baya.

He said there were a variety of short stories that were submitted, from love stories to stories about rural life.

It was encouraging to see a wide variety of subject areas in the stories, from teenage love stories to stories of traditional rural life. The judges were also pleased to see the use of humour, which enlivened many of the submissions, and, generally, the good command of language," said Baya.
However, he said some plots were too complex and the characters were poorly developed.

"There was an overuse of descriptive passages at the expense of moving the story forward. In good fiction a writer will 'show and not tell'. In several of the stories there were too long descriptions of the main character's state of mind and emotions," said Baya. "Several of the plots were overly complex and the characters poorly developed. The endings of many of the stories were unconvincing."

He advised writers to thoroughly check their stories for punctuation and grammar before submitting them to the publisher.

"Writers do need to check the spelling, punctuation and general grammar before submitting their work, whether to a competition or to a publisher," said Baya.

The shortlist will be trimmed to five nominees on 7 September. Intwasa Arts Festival KoBulawayo will run from 18 to 22 September under the theme Bulawayo Blooming.

Below is the list of the 10 writers whose short stories have been shortlisted.
Blessing Hungwe    Coming Out
Violette Kee-Tui    Tattered Cloth   
Mandla Khumalo-    Fading Memories   
Sipho Mpofu    A Congenial Man   
Mahluli Ndlovu    It's Not a Man's World   
Nixon Nembaware    The Rain God of  Nyatanga Hill   
Babusi Nyoni    Foolishness
Mgcini Nyoni    Crying Still       
Khotso Sibanda    Not Guilty as Charged   
Chaltone Tshabangu     Scheherazade of a Sort

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