In July 2016, a bunch of twenty-something-year-olds sat down in a cafe on Koinange Lane in Nairobi and decided to set up a literary magazine. They had no idea of the amount of time, energy and dedication it takes to run a literary magazine. All they knew is that they wanted to create a space that would allow both emerging and established writers to converge and have narratives that converse with one another.
Despite all these doubts, we set up shop on August 3, starting off with a review of the stories shortlisted for the 2016 Writivism Short Story Prize. We are proud to say that during the short period that we have been in existence, we have published work by writers who have influenced the shape of literature on the African continent and beyond.
This hasn’t been without several challenges but we have taken these as ways of learning to make Enkare Review even better.
Some of our hopes have been dashed but in it all we have gained more than we had ever dreamed of.
Eight months later, here we are with our first issue.
It is not perfect, of this we are aware.
But, it contains works from some of the most exciting voices in the literary landscape.
In this Issue, we have an informative and thrilling essay about the origins of Nairobi and how it came to be the city that we know today; a hilarious yet tragic story, beautifully woven, by Frances Ogamba; a futuristic tale that is bleak in every sense of the word, written by Stephen Embleton; poetry on sexuality and freedom by Romeo Oriogun; an engaging interview in which our non-fiction editor, Sanya Noel, talks to David Remnick who has been the editor of The New Yorker since 1998; and so much more.
We want to thank our readers who have been with us since the beginning of this journey. You believed in us.
And to the new readers, welcome to the fold.
The Enkare Review team.