African Writers Trust, a non-profit organisation, recently held a one-day workshop hoping to mentor 20 young writers from three universities.

The writers are students of Uganda Christian University Mukono, Makerere University and Kyambogo University.

The workshop was a follow-up of last year’s writing competition and four-day workshop, which saw 18 students from the three universities gaining creative writing skills. The winner from last year’s competition, Daniel Omara, walked away with Shs 300,000.

African Writers Trust, founded by Gorretti Kyomuhendo in 2009, aims at bringing together and supporting African writers on the continent and in the diaspora.

Kyomuhendo, a novelist, told the students that writers have the potential of being successful in Uganda but they have to have passion to realize their dreams.

“Successful writers are failures who never accept to fail,” said Kyomuhendo, encouraging the students to be patient.

During the session, the young writers were taught the basics of writing and informed of writing opportunities in Uganda and abroad.

Prominent writers such as Dr Susan Kiguli and Jackee Batanda of the Refugee Law Project at Makerere University attended the workshop.

“Many African parents don’t appreciate writing as a career that could make one wealthy or respectable,” lamented Batanda.

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0 #1 Betty L. Cap 2011-02-01 16:22
Remember the days of old, consider the years of many generations: ask thy father, and he will shew thee; thy elders, and they will tell thee. Deuteronomy 32:7

What Africa needs is contemporary writers who will capture the spirit of this era of quasi independence, dictators, and potholes.

Weeks ago Tunisia experienced the beginning of the Jasmine Revolution. As I comment hundreds of thousands of Egyptian protestors are demanding their thirty-year dictator step down and term limitations be written in a new constitution.

A country needs her statesmen, scientists, high technologists, physicians, teachers, tradesmen, and farmers but she also needs historians, journalists, and literary writers if future generations are to understand these tumultuous times.

Record oral history on hard copy so future historians can process events in their context.

Encourage young people to read historical memoirs and biographies, listen to their elders' experiences, and then write personal journals. Their literary efforts may never make The New York Times Best Seller list but everyone at the keyboard learns the value of self-expression.

Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children another generation. Joel 1:3

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