Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani is the author of a novel, I Do Not Come To You By Chance, chosen as one of the best fiction of 2009 by the Washington Post at the end of last year. But now Nwaubani has gone one better and started the new year on a roll, with the shortlisting of her novel for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize in the Best First Book category for the Africa Region. Nigeria has 4 writers in the shortlist, but Ms Nwaubani has the distinction of being the only one fully based at home.
The the full list of the shortlists here (7 South Africans are also in contention).
With the release of the shortlist 2 days ago, a writer friend expressed surprise at the non-appearance on the shortlist of An Elegy For Easterly by Petina Gappah, who surely must be the undisputed breakout writer of the last year. Then it occured to me today: Zimbabwe (Gappah's country) is not in the Commonwealth. Yes, that must be it.
- Author's image: publicity photo