PALF Headed to Mali in 2010.

Mali (courtesy National Geographic)

Mali (courtesy National Geographic)

We want to start by saying thank you for the many well-wishes sent to PALF director Jeffery Allen. Jeff is recovering well and is deeply appreciate of all your kind support.

We are writing today, however, to inform you that because of the difficulty securing sponsors during these very difficult financial times, PALF will be canceling its 2009 Writer’s Conference and concentrating all energies on returning to Africa in 2010 at Timbuktu, Mali.

Moving the conference to Mali in 2010 had always been a goal of PALF’s and one we are excited to fulfill. Though more details will be revealed in the coming months, we can share with you that the 2010 conference will focus one Francophone literature in Africa and the African Diaspora. Special courses, lectures, and events will honor Nigerian writers during what will be the 50th Anniversary of Nigerian independence. There will also be homages to outstanding Francophone writers, including: Camara Laye, Aime Cesaire, Ous Mane Sembene, and Leopold Senghor.

Please be sure to check out website for updates and information on our upcoming full-length manuscript contest (The PALF Book Prize) which opens March of 2009.

Also be sure to check out writers Binyavanga Wainaina, Colin Channer, and Thomas Sayers Ellis as they read in support of PALF on Feburary 17th, at 6:30pm at the New School. Moderated by Jeffery Renard Allen. Further information can be found here:

Thank you for your continued support,

The Pan African Literary Forum


PALF 2008 participant Jennifer Baker-Henry writes of her experiences in Ghana at

PALF 2008 participant Jennifer Baker-Henry writes of her experiences in Ghana at

Click here to check it out!

PALF article in November BLACK ENTERPRISE Magazine

Check the newsstands for the November edition of Black Enterprise magazine featuring an article on the 2008 Pan African Literary Forum. (pg. 69)

CLICK ON ARTICLE to see larger image.

PALF in Black Enterprise

PALF in Black Enterprise

PALF Director Jeffery Renard Allen releases short story collection: “Holding Pattern”

PALF director Jeffery Renard Allen released a short story collection, Holding Pattern, in September via Graywolf Press.

“The prodigiously talented Jeffrey Renard Allen is without question one of our most important writers. His novel, Rails Under My Back, kicked ass, and these tough beautiful stories are a gift. You cannot finish this collection without being dazzled by Allen’s manifold talents.”
—Junot Diaz

“Jeffery Renard Allen’s poetic vision is stunning, tragic, wildly funny and most of all alive. He is the rare writer who, by creating a wholly unique and surreal dreamscape, illuminates, illuminates human reality on the deepest level. He is also the rare writer who borrows from no one and doesn’t pander to anyone.” —Mary Gaitskill

The world of Jeffery Renard Allen’s stunning short-story collection is a place like no other. A recognizable city, certainly, but one in which a man might sprout wings or copper pennies might fall from the skies on to your head. Yet these are no fairy tales. The hostility, the hurt, is all too human.

The protagonists circle each other with steely determination: a grandson taunts his grandmother, determined to expose her secret past; for years, a sister tries to keep a menacing neighbor away from her brother; and in the local police station, an officer and prisoner try to break each other’s reserve. In all the stories, Allen calibrates the mounting tension with exquisite timing, in his mesmerizing prose that has won him comparisons with Joyce and Faulkner. Holding Pattern is a captivating collection by a prodigiously talented writer.

Patricia Jabbeh Wesley on her experiences at PALF

Dr. Patricia Jabbeh Wesley has written about her experiences at PALF 2008 in Accra, Ghana. Shortly thereafter, she visited her home nation of Liberia.

Read Dr. Wesley’s Experience At PALF 2008.

Patricia Jabbeh Wesley reads at PALF opening ceremony.

Aldon Nielsen chronicles his PALF ’08 experiences

Aldon Nielsen
Aldon Nielsen

Over on his blog,, poet Aldon Nielsen has posted several intriguing reports on his experiences with PALF this past July. In order they are:


PALF in Accra, part 1

PALF in Accra, part 2

PALF in Accra, part 3

PALF in Kokrobitey, part 1

PALF in Kokrobitey, part 2

PALF in Kokrobitey, part3