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Ethiopian authors to take part in the third annual Burt Award for African Literature- CODE- Ethiopia

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The Ethiopian Reporter Sunday October 14, 2012

Call for submissions for the 3rd

Burt Award for African Literature – Ethiopia


CODE- Ethiopia in partnership with CODE, and with the generous support of Canadian Philanthropist William Burt, is pleased to invite Ethiopian authors to take part in the third annual Burt Award for African Literature- Ethiopia.

CODE and CODE Ethiopia have been working together for 24 years to support literacy programs in Ethiopia. The Burt Award for African Literature is a literacy prize that recognizes excellence in young adult fiction from Africa. The Burt Award is currently offered in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Ghana and Kenya.

Basic Minimum Criteria

The basic minimum criteria that a manuscript to be considered eligible:-

1. Authors must be citizens of and resident in Ethiopia.

2. Eligible entries must be in manuscripts form. Authors are encouraged to only submit manuscripts that are of the highest quality.

3. Manuscripts must be written in English and demonstrate a mastery of the English language.

4. Manuscripts must be prose fiction and written in chapter form.

5. Manuscripts must contain content and language appropriate for young adults, 12-18 years old.

6. Manuscripts must be thought provoking and original.

7. Manuscripts should be between 80 -120 pages (30,000 to 40,000 words).

8. Winning authors from the previous round are not permitted to submit a manuscript for the current round; they must wait until the following year.

9. Manuscripts must be type written double spaced on A-4 sized paper, and set in Times New Roman font size 12. Authors are encouraged to suggest appropriate illustrations for the story.

Evaluation criteria

Winning Stories will:-

1. Have literary merit with a well-developed plot and young engaging characters with whom young readers can identify.

2. Demonstrate a solid command of the English language through clear, cohesive language use and proper sentence structure, vocabulary and punctuation.

3. Have a strong narrative style and make effective use of imagery, lively dialogue, vivid description and humor or suspense to captivate readers.

4. Engage and entertain young readers (12-18 years old), arouse their interest and curiosity and keep them turning pages.

5. Reflect current issues and challenges facing young people in Ethiopia

Manuscripts which have the potential to evolve into a series or sequel will be welcome; however, unfinished stories will not be accepted.

Jury Process and the Publication of Winning Books

Manuscripts will be assessed by a panel of qualified judges according to the criteria set out above.

The Jury will determine a shortlist of titles eligible to win prizes. Shortlisted titles will be further revised and edited by the editors and authors under the guidance of CODE- Ethiopia. The Three prize winning books approved by the Jury and CODE will be published into books. By submitting, authors agree that the decision of the Jury is final. Prizes will be awarded at an Award Ceremony once the manuscripts are published.

CODE –Ethiopia will distribute copies of the winning books to their network of schools and libraries and market copies of the books to the general public.  Winning titles could also be eligible for publication internationally in print or digital formats.

Prizes for Winning authors

Winning Authors will be awarded cash prizes and will work with CODE –Ethiopia to develop their book for publication.


Prize CAD $ 9,000.00 (paid in Birr) 2nd

Prize CAD $ 7,000.00 (paid in Birr) 3rd

Prize CAD $ 5,000.00 (paid in birr)

How to Submit

Training opportunities:

All manuscripts must be submitted in electronic and print form to CODE Ethiopia in person on April 30, 2013 before 4:30P.M. Four printed copies of the manuscript and one electronic version (writeable CD) with a signed covering letter that must include the author’s complete contact information, including name address, telephone number and email address. Writing either title of the manuscript or any indicating sign /symbol on any part of the manuscript except the letter is forbidden.

Writing workshop will be available. If you are interested in the competition and intend to submit manuscripts; please send your name, full address and CV to CODE-Ethiopia before December 1, 2012. CODE-Ethiopia will contact writers for the exact date of the training. Date of workshop will be announced through your e-mail address. There will also be of the training opportunities for editors and designers interested in working on winning Burt Award books. If you are interested in attending an editing or design workshop, please send your names, full address and CV before December 1, 2012. CODE Ethiopia will contact eligible participants for the exact date of training.

For more information, contact:-

CODE- Ethiopia

P.O.B. 9443

Addis Ababa

Tell. 011-515-31-66

Fax 011- 551-03 –81

E-mail:- –


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