Editors’ Note (Fourth Issue)

Our 4th edition takes you across Africa: to Lagos, Harare, Enugu, Maputo, Abuja and at least one airport. We have prizewinning writers, mid-career talents, and incoming marvels.

A writer takes a wild ride through Lagos in danfos, the city’s storied vehicles of chaos. Another traces the history of a troubled African people over decades. A poet considers the tangible and intangible baggage of travel. One story is set partly at work. There’s more—these are 12 notes on Africa penned by a dozen of its own writers.

Please enjoy and write to us, if you have any thoughts on Efiko. We accept praise; we can handle criticism. We fix typos. 

Contributors (Fourth Issue)

Tolu Ogunlesi: Nothing To Declare
Chimezie Chika: Suffering Is Literature’s Big Game
Zenas Ubere: To J.P. Clark, On Ibadan
Mubanga Kalimamukwento: Will This Time Be Different For You?
Bolanle Alashe: Pai Nosso
Chizitere Madeleine Nwaemesi: Blac’ Tax
Zulaikhah Oyíndàmọ́lá Àgòrò: No Peace In A Lagos Bus
Niran Okewole: Angola

Nzube Ifechukwu: A Different Kind Of Bliss 
Valerie Tendai Chatindo: The Flowers Don’t Bloom In Winter
Munachimso Ochiabutor: Cracks Tend To Widen 
Zama Madinana: maputo  

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Editors’ Note To Third Issue

In our third issue, you’ll find our first stab at publishing criticism that engages with African writing today via one of its most recognisable awarding platforms. Published before that platform announced its current honoree, the piece accurately predicted the outcome. But there are no literary prizes for prophecy, so the piece’s real value is its seriousness, its commitment to critical thought, an almost lost art in contemporary literary discourse.

As with our first two editions, Efiko 3 also presents great poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, all of which are concerned with Africa as place and perspective.  

Contributors (Third Issue)

Ernest Ògúnyẹmí – Small Bills: Notes On The 2023 Caine Prize Shortlist
Amanda Nechesa – Instant Coffee
Fatihah Quadri – In Leave
Khanya Mtshali – The Journeyman
Yandisa Krobani – A Glimpse of the Kasi Life
Jimoh Abdullah – Joy is Coming
Nurain Ọládèjì – My Father Renamed Himself
Musa Abduljalal Aliyu – Portraiture of Belief Eating at the Flesh of a Man’s Reasoning
Ezioma Kalu – Music Is The Balm That Soothes The Soul
Ewa Gerald Onyebuchi – A First Son Responds To An Ebonyi Man’s Violence


Editors’ Note To Second Issue

After deciding on the pieces for the second issue of Efiko Magazine, we realised the sheer breadth of themes covered. You’ll find one corper’s experience of Nigeria’s National Youth Service Corps, you’ll find a woman advising her former lover’s new lover. You’ll find a knowing dissection of sex as enjoyed (and endured) by African women, you’ll read about a stepmother’s travails. Two poets take us on excursions around their physical and metaphysical milieu; a nonfiction writer gives a complex, ultra-intimate account of Igbo cosmology by way of a spirit wife.

We wondered: Is there a grand unifier to these stories and poems?

If there is, it is fealty: each writer’s fealty to words, to setting down a story, an idea, an experience that requires telling and, of course, reading.

We founded Efiko to tell Africa’s stories via the best of African writing. Our contributors to this edition responded accordingly. We thank them. And we hope you enjoy reading the finest writing from and about our continent. 

Contributors (Second Issue)

Akìgbógun Olúwatúnmiṣe Michael – Which Way Is Forward?
Amina Akinola – Mourning
Chiemeziem Everest Udochukwu – But NYSC Is Just A Year
Chimezie Chika – Spirit Wife, Spirit Life
Chinua Ezenwa-Ohaeto – My Therapist Kept Smiling At My Tricks
Fadairo Tesleem – What Is The Weight Of An Unspoken Farewell?
Ifeanyichukwu Eze – Like A Pawn
Mujahid Ameen Lilo – The Trials Of A Witch
Othuke Umukoro – Collocation, Saudade
Rumbi Munochiveyi – Two Cups Of Sex For The African Woman, Please?
Shitta Faruq – To A Poetry Editor About Weightless Gravity
Ucheoma Onwutuebe – Masterclass For My Ex’s New Girl

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Editors’ Welcome Note 

For nearly two decades now, we have shared with each other countless novels, short stories, and essays that we not only imagined but knew for sure that the other will be grateful for, either for the content or style, often both. Our confidence in recommending is not based on certainty about each other’s literary aesthetics or taste, which isn’t static anyway, but in the knowledge that good writing, like good food, is instantly recognizable upon consumption before any analysis of its composition.

While serving as connoisseurs for this issue, our first, we were feeling for just that, writing in any form or style that is so pleasurable it inspires immediate sharing among efikos. In our quest, we were lucky to have received the best from writers that have been on the scene for a while and those with talent we found incompatible with their relatively recent time of arrival.

The all-female fiction line up, a delightful coincidence, explore the disposition of women in various parts of the continent in often hilarious, fundamentally sad narratives. If there is anything approaching a conclusion from these stories, it is that victims are sometimes abusers themselves.

The poems do what poetry does best, giving us language in its, according to Rita Dove, “most distilled, most powerful.”  The nonfiction offering range from a political piece about waiting to be confirmed for a government position—almost as stressful as waiting for a decision on your submission to your favourite literary magazine—to a personal narrative about an encounter with a tortoise bought for a reason other than peppersoup (a very un-Nigerian move). These pieces will make you see the need for Efiko.

Launching a literary magazine is an exciting, often arduous task. We carried on because we believe we are doing the Lord’s work, bringing you excellent writing. 

Contributors (First Issue)

A. Igoni Barrett – What Hope Is
Beatrice Lamwaka – Cardamon Coffee
Ernest Ogunyemi – Little Inhabitants
Frances Ogamba – The Baptism
Hussain Ahmed – Bouquet
Lola Opatayo – The Mountain of Goodness
Oris Aigbokhaevbolo – The Death of Nigerian Literature
Rumbi Munochiveyi – The Girl
Samuel A. Adeyemi – War
TJ Benson on Speculative Fiction
Warsan Shire – Bless The Real Housewife
Waziri Adio – Waiting For Abuja

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