Three female writers, two from Ghana and one from Nigeria have arrived Iseyin, Oyo State, Nigeria for the July-August 2017 session of the Ebedi International Writers Residency.
Th ey are;Vanessa Shika Nanevie (Ghana) MojalaoluwaJejelolaOlaifa (Nigeria) and Gertrude SerwaaBoadu (Ghana) Vanessa is a graduate of Information Studies and Th eatre Arts from the University Of Ghana at Legon. As a Co-Founder of Tan Maroon Limited, she currently manages the Website and Corporate Social Responsibility activities for the Accra based outfi t that specializes in the production of African Beverages.
A member of the Ghana Writers Association, some of her writings include a fi lm script, ‘’Epic Wedding Table’’ as well as a digital story entitled; ‘’Miss to Mrs Purple’’. During her stay in Ebedi, Vanessa will complete work on her Foreshortening Sfumato project where she plans to present the tales of four artistes, two Nigerian, a Ghanaian and a European artist in a docudrama via a digital platform. According to Vanessa, Foreshortening Sfumato is inspired by Mark Twain’s ‘Is he dead’ which was written in 1898 and published in 2003. She also hopes to teach Iseyin students Ghanaian storytelling approaches and folks music.
With this, Nigerian students will be able to juxtapose the ‘Ghanaian way’ and the ‘Nigerian means’ of storytelling. Th e second writer, Jejelola is a Law graduate from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria where she was very active in students unionism and was the General Secretary of the International Law Students Association (ILSA), for the University’s chapter among other positions. In the past one year, Jeje has attended National Conferences with such themes as Habitat, Forensic Science, Gender and Confl ict Resolution. She currently works as the Associate Editor for Jacob and Lydia Publishers, Abeokuta, Ogun State. Her experience in her job where she edits manuscripts and publishes literary works inspired her own writing career. She will be using her time in Ebedi to complete work on her Short Story collection; ‘’Tabitha and other Stories’’.
She will also mentor Iseyin students in the art of story- telling through drama presentation. Th e third writer, Gertrude a graduate of Th eatre Arts from the University of Ghana at Legon loves to read, write and sing.
She has among other things been an Intern Reporter at the Accra based Graphic Communications Group Ltd and now works as an Investment Sales Executive in Accra, Ghana. A member of the Ghana Writers Association, Gertrude works have been published in publications such as Pan African Poetry Blueprint and Graphic Show Biz publication among others. Gertrude wishes to use her time at the Residency to complete work on a pan-African project aimed at writing poems mostly derived from African proverbs. Th e project started a year ago with the collection of Akan proverbs in Ghana.
Her stay in Nigeria will enable her to collect proverbs in the Yoruba language for the poetry project.She also hopes to teach Iseyin students the four traditional dances of Ghana among other creative endeavors. Th e Ebedi International Literary Writers Residency is a private Initiative for writers to complete ongoing works in a conducive environment at no cost to the writers. Since its inception about eight years ago, the Residency has hosted over 80 writers from 8 African countries. Many of the past Residents (Fellows) have used the Residency to produce international award winning books. Th e latest is Ayobami Adebayo a 2016 Ebedi Fellow whose novel; Stay With Me was recently shortlisted for the 2017 Bailey Women’s Prize for Fiction