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Harriet Anena

Harriet Anena Ugandan writer

Ugandan writer
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro Ugandan writer
Countries Uganda
Occupations Writer
Gender female
Birth Gulu District
Education Makerere University
The details

Harriet Anena is a Ugandan author, poet, and journalist. She is the author of a collection of poems, "A Nation In Labour". Anena worked with the Daily Monitor newspaper as a reporter, sub-editor, and deputy chief sub-editor from 2009 to September 2014. Her journalistic articles have been published in the Daily Monitor, New Vision, and The Observer. She has also taught specialised writing at Islamic University In Uganda.

Early life and education

Anena was born to Acholi parents and raised in Gulu District in Uganda. She attended Gulu Public Primary School, Sacred Heart Secondary School, and Gulu Central High School. She graduated with a Bachelor of Mass Communication degree at Makerere University in 2010 and completed a Master of Arts in human rights from the same institution in 2015.


Anena wrote her first poem, "The plight of the Acholi child", in 2003. It won a writing competition organised by the Acholi Religious Leaders Peace Initiative and helped secure her a bursary for A-Level education. She attended the Caine Prize workshop 2013, and her story "Watchdog Games" was published in the Caine Prize anthology "A memory this size and other stories: The Caine Prize for African Writing 2013". In 2013, she was shortlisted for the "Ghana Poetry prize" for her poem "We arise". "A Nation In Labour" is her debut collection of poems.

Published works

Poetry collection

  • A Nation In Labour. Millennium Press Limited. 2015. 


  • "Forgiveness" and "We Arise", in Beverley Nambozo Nsengiyunva, ed. (2014). A thousand voices rising: An anthology of contemporary African poetry. BN Poetry Foundation. ISBN 978-9970-9234-0-3. 
  • "Violent Love" in "Lawino", 2014
  • "I Died Alive" in The Suubi Collection (2013)

Short stories

  • "Watchdog Games" in A memory this size and other stories: The Caine Prize for African Writing 2013. Jakana media. 2013. ISBN 9781431408382. 
  • "The Dogs Are Hungry " in "Sooo Many Stories", 2014
  • "The Axe" in "Bookslive", 2014

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