Once Again, the Bessie Head Heritage Trust Offers a Workshop for Short Story Writers!

The Bessie Head Heritage Trust, with sponsorship from Diamond Educational Publishers, is once again pleased to announce a short-story workshop and competition. The goal of the workshop is to help aspiring writers to hone their skills and prepare them for the Bessie Head Independence Short Story Competition. Facilitators for this year include two past Bessie Head winners, Cheryl Ntumy and Wazha Lopang. The workshop will be held 21 May 2016 in Gaborone.

Trustee Mary Lederer commented that "The judges were impressed with the quality of last year's stories, and we believe that this results from having first held the workshop to help writers understand what they need to do to compete." Diamond Publishers has once again donated funding for the workshop and competition.

The workshop will cover the basics of short story writing, including understanding what "show, don't tell" really means, writing credible dialogue, techniques for building dramatic tension, the importance of reading in any writer's life, understanding and using point of view, and the guidelines for the Bessie Head Short Story Competition.

To apply for the workshop, each applicant must submit a 500-word flash-fiction story in English (the word limit will be strictly enforced, so if a story is 501 words, it will not be considered; less than 500 words is fine). Stories and contact information for all applicants must be submitted by email to by 1 May 2016. The story should be attached to the email as a Word document, double-spaced, 12 pt Times New Roman font. All successful applicants will be contacted before 7 May 2016. Complete details are available on the website

The short story competition is scheduled for later in the year, with the awards ceremony to be held as part of Botswana's 50th anniversary Independence celebrations. Deadline for submissions will be 8 July 2016. Detailed submission guidelines will be announced after the workshop at the end of May and will be posted on the Bessie Head website at For further details regarding the workshop or the competition, please contact the Trust at

PRESS RELEASE: Bessie Head Heritage Trust Has Exciting Plans for Writers This Year! Applying for the Bessie Head Heritage Trust One-Day Writing Workshop [Information on competition coming end of May] Back to Awards Page