Daily Trust (Abuja)

17 February 2013

Nigeria: ALS Hosts Another Trio for February

The Abuja Literary Society (ALS) features the witty real life experiences of artist, writer, and photographer, Victor Ehikhamenor, alongside women empowerment writer, Dr. Hajo Sani, and short story specialist, Ify Asia Chiemeziem. The trio will feature in the BookJam@Silverbird Abuja on Friday 22nd February at 6pm.

February BookJam authors represent the excellent tradition of the ALS in showcasing diverse literary and artistic talents. Victor Ehikhamenor flies in from Lagos where he has a trendy fan base. His global brand developed both in Lagos and New York and he is a prime example of the near-complete artiste, excelling in visual and literary arts.

Hajo Sani is an example of productivity; proof that busy public or private sector work should not stop creative juices from flowing. Her focus on providing intellectual capital for women empowerment in a developing society is a welcome fillip to the diverse work by other activists in the field.

Ify Asia Chiemeziem's writing is an example of the salutary effect of ALS on budding writers. Attending ALS readings as a young, aspiring author, Ify Asia thrilled Abuja literati with her witty short stories which always ended with an unpredictable twist. She listened to the critiquing of her work and steadily improved her writing. Her becoming a published writer, and being celebrated in the famous ALS BookJam, is the culmination of several years of steady progress.

The trio will certainly provide a vibrant and stimulating evening in February's BookJam.

Victor Ehikhamenor:

An award winning visual artist, writer and photographer living in Nigeria and the USA, Victor Ehikhamenor is the author of the poetry volume, Sordid Rituals, and the short story collection, The Supreme Command. The latter won the Association of Commonwealth Broadcasters Award. His work also won the 2008 Lean Forest Scholar Fiction Award and a Bread Loaf Scholarship which he turned down in favour of being a Creative Director at NEXT Newspaper.

Ehikhamenor is a prolific writer and contributes to magazines, literary journals and newspapers such as NEXT Newspapers, 234NEXT.com, and Daily Times Newspaper. He currently heads his creative and strategic communications company, VEE Global Concepts.

His latest non-fiction literary work, Excuse Me! is inspired by love letters, which he confessed he had written a lot back in the days. Excuse Me! is an offshoot of his weekly column of the same title at NEXT Newspaper. It is a witty, funny and serious reality compendium depicting culture, practices and foibles of Nigerians and Nigeria. Hence, the subtitle, One Nigerian's funny Outsized Reality. An enjoyable read, this book broached ideas and issues in a memorable manner. Excuse Me! is presently a recommended text in Ambrose Ali University and University of Benin.

Born in Udomi-Uwessan, Edo State, Ehikhamenor holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and Literary Studies from Ambrose Ali University, Nigeria and a Masters Degree in Technology management as well as MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Maryland.

Hajo Sani:

The former Minister of Women Affairs is the author of Women and Leadership, her third book based on the empowerment of Nigerian women. Women and Leadership was publicly presented at the Women Leadership and Empowerment Summit, 13th Nov. 2012.

Hajo is the founder of Women and National Development, (WAND) an NGO with focus on women issues and girl-child education. WAND is the initiative of a group of women committed to aiding women's participation in development for greater productivity. It is devoted to recognizing the diverse and historic accomplishment of women leaders and advancing women's leadership potentials. Dr. Hajo Sani holds a Bachelors Degree in Education, a Masters in Guidance and Counseling and PhD in Public Administration and Policy Analysis. She was the Secretary-General of the West African Women Association, (WAWA).

She is the current Director, Special Duties and Project Director for the NGILCFM, a new Society for Family Health (SHF) project.

Her other works include, Women and National Development: The Way Forward (2001), and First Ladyship and Empowerment Programmes in Nigeria (2010).

Ify Asia Chiemeziem:

Our New Priest is a novel by Ify Chiemeziem. She is the mother of three children and grew up in Sokoto, where she started scribbling stories in notebooks at a very tender age, to the frustration of her mother. She views motherhood as an adventure from which she is inspired to write more and also draws inspiration from her husband whom she swears has the bloodlines of great storytellers.

Bookjam@Silverbird is a collaboration of the Abuja Literary Society and Silverbird Lifestyle,holds every last Friday of the month and is anchored by co-host of the Abuja Poetry Slam, Jide Atta. It features book readings, book signings, musical presentations, raffle draws and a discussion by the guest writers. In addition, there is usually a special Slam poetry performance by some of Abuja's finest Slam champions.

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