By Nyana Kakoma | June 20th, 2016

Princess Arabella, and her mother, complete with natural hair styles. Illustration: Mylo Freeman via
Princess Arabella, and her mother. Illustration: Mylo Freeman via


1.The Gathering’s Short story Writing Competition

The Gathering, a group of readers and writers on Facebook, is organising it’s third short story writing competition. This year’s Judge is author of Tropical Fish, Doreen Baingana. You have up to 7pm, July 13 to apply. Here is what you need to know:

-Submissions must be original, and unpublished anywhere. Your submission must not be longer than 2,500 words.

-You must be in this group to submit a story – follow the link if you need to be added.

-#SSWC is an online writing competition, and is open ONLY to Ugandans. You must identify yourself using your current Facebook ID. Judges will have no idea who the submissions are from. However, Jade Incorporated, the firm that runs the logistical process of this competition, will only accept submissions from contestants whose identity can be traced back to their Facebook ID.

-Prizes will include cash, with a top prize of Shs. 1,000,000, an interesting bunch of stuff from their sponsors, and an invitation to a Writing Workshop run by Doreen Baingana.

Submissions should be made by email to

2. Writivism June LitFair: This month’s Writivism LitFair will be held this Sunday June 26 at the Uganda Museum from 3pm till 6pm. Peter Kagayi will be discussing some of his poetry in his debut collection, The Headline That Morning and Other Poems. There will be other speakers as well. If you have a copy of this book, this is a great opportunity to dig deeper into what the book is really about.

3. Have you read the reviews of The Headline That Morning yet? Here they are:

-Nevender: Just Read : The Headline That Morning and other Poems by Peter Kagayi

-Lule Raymond for Turn The Page: The Headline That Morning-Peter Kagayi 

-The East African: Uganda’s rich poetry culture comes of age

On the Launch

-Daily Monitor:  The poetry book launch that was a rain of emotions

-The New Vision: Kagayi unpacks poetry collection

4. If you haven’t done so already, do check out the conversations on this year’s shortlisted Caine Prize stories (interviews and reviews) on Brittle Paper: #CainePrize2016

5. On whether reading can make you happy and bibliotherapy

Bibliotherapy is a very broad term for the ancient practice of encouraging reading for therapeutic effect. The first use of the term is usually dated to a jaunty 1916 article in The Atlantic Monthly, “A Literary Clinic.” In it, the author describes stumbling upon a “bibliopathic institute” run by an acquaintance, Bagster, in the basement of his church, from where he dispenses reading recommendations with healing value.

and the one you may identify with:

With books there is no forced sociability. If we pass the evening with those friends—books—it’s because we really want to. When we leave them, we do so with regret and, when we have left them, there are none of those thoughts that spoil friendship: ‘What did they think of us?’—‘Did we make a mistake and say something tactless?’—‘Did they like us?’—nor is there the anxiety of being forgotten because of displacement by someone else.

Read the entire article here: Can reading make you happier?

6. In Black Girls can be princesses too, Mylo Freeman explains her character choices and why the battle for diversity in children’s books is far from over.

Children are not colour-blind. Through diverse picture books children will have an opportunity to learn on an unconscious level to feel empathy and identify with others from a different ethnic background to their own. Children need both mirrors and windows. Many children of colour see the world only through windows but they also need mirrors. Other children only see mirrors and they need to see the world through windows.

More here: Black Girls Can Be Princesses Too.

7. And just for laughs, here are famous books retitled like episodes of Friends.


Have a great week and see you on Sunday?

7/7 is Sooo Many Stories’ way of helping you beat the Monday blues. 7 things that are making me happy in the literary world.

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