Gothataone Moeng is a 2024 Whiting Award Winner

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Botswanan writer, Gothataone Moeng, has emerged as one of ten 2024 Whiting Award winners, with her short story collection Call and Response clinching a win in the Fiction Category. She will also receive a prize worth $50,000 in prize money.

Call and Response details the story of a young widow who adheres to the expectations of wearing mourning clothes for nearly a year, though she’s unsure what the traditions mean or whether she is ready to meet the world without their protection. Stories collected in Call and Response are strongly anchored in charting the emotional journeys of women seeking love and opportunity beyond the barriers of custom and circumstance.

The selection committee had the following to say about the book:

“These nine big-hearted, capacious stories, rooted in the villages and cities of Botswana, examine all that blooms and breaks in the bonds, desires, and ambitions of women: widows young and old, sparring sisters, and girls full of longing, who lean on and push against the dictates of their world. In this debut, Gothataone Moeng walks with the masters of the form; she is capable of enthralling leaps in time and point of view. Her work makes our day-to-day moments immense.”

The Whiting Award is an American award presented annually to ten emerging writers in fiction, non-fiction,poetry and drama. The award is sponsored by the Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation and has been presented since 1985. The awards, of $50,000 each, are based on early accomplishment and the promise of great work to come.

Gothataone Moeng is a former fiction fellow in the Wallace Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University. Her writing has also received fellowships and support from Tin House, where she was a 2019 Summer Workshop scholar, and from A Public Space, where she was a 2016 Emerging Writer Fellow. Her writing has appeared in or is forthcoming from Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly Review, American Short Fiction, One Story, A Public Space, and The Oxford American, amongst others. She holds an MFA Creative Writing (Fiction) from the University of Mississippi. She currently lives in Serowe, Botswana, where she was born.

Congratulations Gothataone Moeng!


Bakare Oluwatobiloba

I write to educate, motivate and define history with literature. Just being me!