About This Event:
Celebrating one year of publishing diverse stories with ten leading writers from around the world.
In July 2020, Isele Magazine published its inaugural issue of stories and poems by writers who hold a mirror to our society and who challenge conventional expectations about ways of being, how to be, and who decides who should be. One year after the genre-defining issue, the magazine has since published over 100 writers from more than 15 countries worldwide, who continue to uplift and shape our thinking.
Hosted by Ukamaka Olisakwe.
Date and Time:
Friday, 3 December 2021
11:00 am – 12:30 pm CST
Zoom (Link: https://usd.zoom.us/j/8484408637)
Meet Our Readers:
E.C. Osondu is the author of the story collections Voice of America and Alien Stories, and the novel This House Is Not for Sale. He is a winner of the Caine Prize, a Pushcart Prize, BOA Fiction Prize, among other prizes. A professor of English at Providence College, his fiction has appeared in Guernica, The Atlantic, AGNI, n+1, The Kenyon Review, McSweeney’s, Zyzzyva, The Threepenny Review, The New Statesman and many other places. His work has been translated into half a dozen languages.
Rita Banerjee is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing and Co-Director of the MFA in Creative Writing and Publishing program at the George Polk School of Communications at LIU Brooklyn. She is the author of CREDO: An Anthology of Manifestos and Sourcebook for Creative Writing, Echo in Four Beats, the novella “A Night with Kali” in Approaching Footsteps, and Cracklers at Night. She received her doctorate in Comparative Literature from Harvard University, her MFA from the University of Washington, and her BA in English Honors from Rutgers University. Her work appears in Hunger Mountain, Isele, Nat. Brut., Poets & Writers, Academy of American Poets, Los Angeles Review of Books, Vermont Public Radio, and elsewhere. She is a co-writer of Burning Down the Louvre (2022), a documentary film about race, intimacy, and tribalism in the United States and in France. She received a 2021-2022 Creation Grant from the Vermont Arts Council for her new memoir and manifesto on female cool, and one of the opening chapters of this new memoir, “Birth of Cool” was a Notable Essay in the 2020 Best American Essays. Her writing is represented by Folio Literary Management, and you can follow her work at ritabanerjee.com.
Erin Stalcup is Editor-in-Chief of Defunct. Born and raised and educated in Flagstaff, on occupied Diné and Hopi land, she first left to live in Brooklyn, and has never since changed her (917) cellphone number. Erin has taught in community colleges, universities, liberal arts schools, prisons, state schools, and MFA programs in Manhattan, Asheville, Denton, her alma mater in her hometown, Montpelier, and now she’s back in Brooklyn. She is a co-founder of Waxwing, and served as Editor of Hunger Mountain. Her books include the story collection And Yet It Moves, and the novels Every Living Species and the forthcoming Keen--a chapter of which was published in Isele. You can read and hear some of her work at erinstalcup.xyz.
Dennis Mugaa is a writer from Meru, Kenya. He was longlisted for the Afritondo Short Story Prize and was a finalist for the Black Warrior Review Fiction Contest. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Jalada, Lolwe, Isele and Washington Square Review. He is currently studying for an MA in Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia where he is a Miles Morland Foundation Scholarship recipient.
Roseline Mgbodichinma is a Nigerian writer, poet and blogger who is passionate about documenting women’s stories. She is currently pursuing a law degree and actively freelancing. She is a Contributing fiction editor for Barren Magazine, a Nairobi fiction writing workshop (NF2W) scholarship recipient, and a SprinNG alumna. She won the audience favourite award for the Okada books and Union Bank campus writing challenge, she is the third prize winner for the PIN Food Poetry Contest. Her work has been published on Isele, Native Skin, Down River Road, Amplify, JFA Human Rights Mag, Blue Marble Review, Kalahari Review, Indianapolis Review, the Hellebore, and elsewhere. You can reach her on her blog at www.mgbodichi.com where she writes about art, issues, and lifestyle.
Dr. Nora Ekeanya (Nora Nneka) is a psychiatrist and poet. Raised by Nigerian immigrant parents, she obtained her bachelor’s degree in pre-medical biology from the University of Florida and went on to attend the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine. It was during her psychiatry residency training at the University of Missouri- Kansas City that Dr. Ekeanya started writing articles detailing her experiences as a Black physician and was soon after featured in the popular physician blog, KevinMD. Her essay, “The Sense of Touch,” was included in the live storytelling event, Shelf Life, hosted by Kansas City actor and producer David Wayne Reed and was revised for the December 2020 issue of the African literature magazine, Isele. In September 2021, she was nominated for Isele Magazine’s Best of the Net Anthology. Her first visual poem, “Identity,” won 2nd place at the Queens Underground International Black and Brown Film Festival in October 2021.
Sylvia K. Ilahuka is a Tanzanian writer currently living in Uganda. In addition to Isele, her work has been published in Lolwe, Doek!, the Aké Review, Iskanchi Press, and Bandcamp Daily. An alumna of Wellesley College, she is currently working on a Goethe-Institut art project about everyday African feminisms.
Hauwa Shaffii Nuhu is a poet and essayist from Nigeria, whose work has appeared on Isele Magazine, Popula, Ake Review, Lolwe, Jalada Africa, and elsewhere. She’s a 2018 Fellow of Ebedi Writers Residency, and is the nonfiction editor at Agbowo. Her chapbook of poetry “Sister” was published this year by Akashic Books in collaboration with the African Poetry Book Fund. She’s also a lawyer, and currently works as a specialized reporter at HumAngle.
Uchechukwu Peter Umezurike holds a PhD in English from the University of Alberta, Canada. An alumnus of the International Writing Program (USA), Umezurike is a co-editor of Wreaths for Wayfarers, an anthology of poems and the author of Wish Maker (Masobe Books, 2021) and Double Wahala, Double Trouble (Griots Lounge Publishing, 2021). He is the winner of the 2021 Nigeria Prize for Literary Criticism.
Sarah Rebecca Kersley is a poet, translator and editor, originally from the UK and based in Brazil for nearly two decades. She is the author of two books published in Brazil: Tipografia oceânica [‘Ocean typography’] (poetry, 2017) and Sábado [‘Saturday’] (memoir/biography/creative non-fiction, 2018). In English, her work has appeared in places such as The Critical Flame, Washington Square Review, Isele Magazine, and elsewhere. She co-runs Livraria Boto-cor-de-rosa/ Paralelo13S, an independent bookshop and small press focused on contemporary literature, in the city of Salvador, Bahia, where she is based.