Call For Submission | Sketches of Urban Strife: An Anthology of New Age African Poetry

April 4, 2020 0 By The Writers Pen

The art of poetry has been said by many to be a dying art, in a rapidly changing world, shaped by love, crime, hate, beauty, sexism, war, corruption, hunger, individualism, and multiculturalism to say the least. It is only now that the poet is more relevant especially the African poet who has had their works marginalized, ridiculed, and reduced to mere lines on a paper. The art of poetry and the work of poets has never been more urgent, to quote the words of the great African American writer James Baldwin, “Poets are finally the only people who know the truth about us.”

We’re pleased to announce a call for submissions for Sketches of Urban Strife: An Anthology of New Age African Poetry. The title of the anthology is adopted from Zimbabwean Poet Philani Amadeas Nyoni’s poem ‘Airy-fairy Ale’, published in Hewn From Rock co-authored with John Eppel , a poem which depicts a   poet’s struggle against violence, corrupt government systems, poverty, drugs, religion, and ‘unburn strife’. Zimbabwean Poet, Editor, and Critic Nyashadzashe Chikumbu will edit the anthology. The anthology will be published by Mystery Books, an imprint of Mystery Publishers, and distributed by the African Books Collective, UK.


Please read the following guidelines closely. Submissions that do not follow any of the instructions will not be considered for inclusion in the anthology.

  • Eligibility.       The anthology is applicable ONLY to African poets. We define an African poet as someone born in Africa, or whose parents (at least one) are African, or someone who currently lives in Africa, and has done so for at least 10 years.
  • Length.           Poets who have a full-length book or a chapbook or pamphlet published in electronic or print formats can submit. Poets who have not been published in any form or on any literary forum, are encouraged to submit. Poets can submit up to three poems per poet.
  • Language.      Poems submitted should be in English. Works translated into English from any African language may be submitted, but they must be accompanied by their English version.
  • Theme.          There is no fixed theme or form but poems submitted should not exceed 40 lines in length.
  • Identifying information including names of poets, addresses, phone numbers, publication history, etc should NOT be included in the manuscript or in the body of the email. Poems to be submitted through your personal email address and include the same email address on the last page of the manuscript.
  • Submissions will be judged solely on merit.
  • Simultaneous submissions are allowed, but please notify us immediately if any of your poems is accepted elsewhere.
  • All entries to submitted in a SINGLE WORD DOCUMENT, typed in TIMES NEW ROMAN, font size 12pt, single spaced, and sent via email to the Mystery Publishers Team at
  • The email subject should read “Sketches of Urban Strife: An Anthology of New Age African Poetry.”
  • Each poem must have a tittle.
  • Poems must be the original work of the contributor.
  • Deadline for submission is midnight (GMT+02:00) of April 2020.
  • We hope to respond to every submission by the 31 July, 2020. However, there may be a delay in response time pending the editor’s final decision.
  • Accepted contributors must be available at all times, for correspondence and the editing of their works that may follow.
  • All enquiries should be sent to Enquiries sent to the submission email will not be read.
  • Enquiries concerning submission status after July will not be entertained.
Read Also  Five Opportunities for African writers and poets for April 2020.


The anthology will be published by Mystery Books, an imprint of Mystery Publishers Limited (, and distributed by African book Collective.