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Media platform gives five months grants to writers

Junior Curator, African Artists’ Foundation AAF, Ugochukwu Emebiriodo (left); Development Manager, African Artists’ Foundation, Nguveren Ahua; CEO/Managing Director, Loose Media, Valentine Ohu, and Creative Director, Loose Media, Uzoamaka Umeh at the event… in Lagos


The need to break the culture of silence, especially those with long-term negative implications, not just on individuals but the entire society, Loose Media has announced a five-month grant initiative of USD$1,000 per month. The aim is to support Loose Conversation (LC), a platform that utilises a number of collaborative storytelling-based strategies to give a voice to stereotyped issues that people generally shy-away from in order to challenge the status quo and allow new standards of thinking.

The grant, which is a literary commission by Loose Media to provide funding support to aspiring writers, was announced recently at a press briefing in Lagos. It also aims at ideological overhaul through the literary platform. It has as theme ‘Everyone Has A story,’ and would showcase meaningful reflection of unique relationships and experiences through the art of storytelling. Development Manager, African Artists’ Foundation (AAF), Nguveren Ahua, said the grant is basically to empower and encourage writers who emerge winners through telling core stories that depict the challenges of society.

Creative Director, Loose Media, Uzoamaka Umeh, stated that it is to encourage people to tell their stories in their peculiarity and context, so that the society would know how to proffer solutions to certain barbaric and unattainable culture of restriction. More importantly, it is to explode silence that has overtime halted not only the growth of victims but also the development of society.

According to her, “There are certain wrongs that are seen as norms just because it they are supposed to be the way things are done and anything outside that stereotype might lead to stigmatisation. We want people to share their true-life experiences of these stereotypes through their write-ups and together we’d have the issues treated and positive changes inculcated in people and the society. So starting from this month, Loose Media will grant one lucky winner $1,000 for five exceptional stories. We will grant $1,000 to one writer every month until July 2019. This commission is dedicated to empowering writers from all backgrounds to express themselves in unorthodox ways.”

She added that the literary commission initiative is in partnership with AAF to expand the reach of the initiative and help bring the winning stories to life via offline exhibitions.CEO/Managing Director, Loose Media, Valentine Ohu, said: “We want to use the initiative to make a difference and change the narrative of certain bizarre culture and conceptions in Africa. People suffer in silence and have to go through the same old and odd traditions without basis in the same chain and phase of life just because someone or tradition says it is a norm and any attempt to do otherwise leads to condemnation. Loose Media is using Loose Conversation’s ‘Every One Has A Story’ literary competition to correct these stereotypes.”

Ohu further said the first submission window for this month would end on March 18. To advance this grant, Loose Media will employ various offline and online promotional tools to support the work and enhance outreach. To win the grant, writers must email 400-600 words stories with unorthodox thematic preoccupation of ‘abortion,’ ‘money,’ ‘infidelity,’ ‘feminism’ and ‘body image’ and send to submit@loosemedia.com

The rules for the competition include a writer being 18 years old and above, stories to be sent in PDF format, and on separate PDF files. Stories must be discussed in unique and orthodox ways, with full name, age, phone number, location (city, state and country), and Instagram handle. All stories and information must be sent in one email submission as different threads or repetition will be automatically disqualified. All decisions made by the judges regarding winning are final. Clicking submit, implies agreeing to terms and conditions. Grant rules are subject to change.

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