The Lagos Review was launched, formally, one year ago, on September 1, 2019, even though we had been teasing and publishing pieces long before then.
Our very first edition featured Brian Chikwava’s review of Chika Unigwe’s short story collection – Better Late Than Never.
The reception was warm and enthusiastic and we received, in quick succession, a deluge of submissions.
Our clear intention was to open up the literary space for the ventilation of opinions and literary analysis. We have many people writing but very few people are casting a literary glance at what is being written. This was at the core of our decision to privilege reviews and essays and analysis over fiction and poetry. Our mission statement was simple – “A review is the first critical engagement with a work of art, books, movies, music, plays etc. It helps shape opinion, excite conversation, and push engagement. The Lagos Review intends to bring back that critical and analytical rigour evident in the glory days of The Guardian Literary Series, The Post Express Literary Supplement (PELS) and The Sunday Sun Revue.”
In the intervening yawn of time, we have been privileged to publish the works and words of Nnedi Okorafor, Bisi Adjapon, Molara Wood, Chika Unigwe, Helon Habila, Tanure Ojaide, Okey Ndibe, Tade Ipadeola, Black Wolf, Tam Fiofori, Victor Ehikhamenor, Chike Frank Edozien, Obemeta, Nduka Otiono, Abdulkareem Baba Aminu, Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, Sanya Osha, Nenghi Ilagha, Wale Okediran, Kola Tubosun, Nze Sylva Ifedigbo, Jerry Chiemeke, Ucheoma Onwutuebe, Emmanuel Esomnofu, Chidinma Okere, TJ Benson, Carl Tever, Adaora Nnadi, dsndsw, Thulani Angoma-Mzini, Uzor Maxim Uzoatu, Odili Ojubuno, Michael Kolawole, Wilfred Okiche, Femi Odugbemi, Ayodele Ibiyemi, and many more.
One year in, our submission is that criticism, critical discourse and non-fiction are alive and well in these climes and our resolve remains to privilege those.
As we step into our second year, we wish to express our profound appreciation to Theo Lawson, Chief Warden at Freedom Park; Toyin Akinosho, Jahman Anikulapo, and CORA; Gbemi Shasore and Quramo as well as Niran Adedokun, The Bagus, Benjy Okoh, Innocent Ekejiuba, James Murua, Sam Umukoro, Mayowa Owojaiye, Nkiru Olumide Ojo, Soji Oyawoye, Iyunola and many others for supporting the work we have set ourselves to do at TLR.
We wish to announce, however, that following the economic toll from Covid-19, we will no longer be paying for reviews as well as essays submitted and published on the site beginning October 1, 2020. We will, however, continue to provide the editorial scrutiny and critical rigour that have become our hallmark. This decision will be reviewed as things improve.
Finally, in response to requests by writers, we will publish a fiction edition once every quarter beginning December 2020. Submissions are now open and will close on November 15, 2020. We will pay N10,000 per published short story with a maximum word count of 6,000. Full details will be published shortly.
Thank you to everyone who has supported us by submitting a piece or pointing out a typo or sharing a story. We are especially indebted to members of our advisory board and our hardworking Editor, Henri Yire. We couldn’t have done this without you all.
Thank you from all of us at The Lagos Review….home to the best writing.