Love and More Love as Tom Mwiraria Launches “Land of Bones”
By Kimathi Makini.
On a pleasant Friday afternoon, Tom Mwiraria launched his book second book titled ‘The Land of Bones’ at the Main Library of the National Museums of Kenya(under the Banner of Writers Guild Kenya) to an audience of about 60 people drawn from different disciplines. The event co-hosted by MC Douglas Logedi and actor and creative writer George ‘Generali’ Mbuto drew an audience of academicians, writers, bloggers, poets, musicians and other lovers of art who had come to witness and celebrate another writer’s feat.
Among the attendees was Ms Lydia Gaitirira, Co-founder and Executive Director of AMKA Space for Women’s Creativity, who celebrated Tom Mwiraria on his launch and encouraged other writers in attendance to keep writing, saying “you may be talented, but until you start, until you try, you wouldn’t know you are talented”, words that are in line with The Writers Guild Kenya CEO, Gabriel Dinda’s “Let’s keep trying” slogan. She also encouraged the young people in attendance to read so they can talk and discuss issues from a point of knowledge. Mr Sammy Chepkwony, the CEO of People Centric, an artificial intelligencecompany, and a friend of the author also congratulated Tom on his book launch. In his speech, he remembers Tom Mwiraria and as a ‘gentleman’ with whom they worked together at TATA Chemicals(Magadi Soda Foundation). He said that, Tom had achieved something(write a book), which he has longed to achieve all his life.
The event was also spiced up by performances from poets and spoken word artists such as Griffins Ndhine, Mc Mike bila Mic(from Mavoko) and Hassan while N’jo put his guitar to good use as he made some good sound out of it. The spectacular performances touched on different themes relevant to the society, with the last performance before the author’s moment by Samantha Navuri, a seven year old poet, touching on Female Genital Mutilation. She recited the words with the audience in awe, with the persona asking her mother to “clean my heart, and you will not worry about my genitalia”. Nelson Mtale of Nifty Arts presented a ball-pen painting of the author to him as well.
The man of the day, Mr Tom Mwiraria, was one of the first people to arrive at the venue as I found him there. He was in a turtleneck and a black coat with a white lapel flower. He was calm all through as he told of the short stories in his book and the inspiration behind them. He explained the setting of the “Ngaa Hills” where the different stories unfold in the “Land of Bones”. His was soft-spoken as he told of the bold and loud articulation of the issues surrounding social justice, human rights and environmental justice in his book. He made such statements as “I believe peace is the daughter of justice, and it is not bigger than justice. It is not borne from the ‘accept and move on’ rhetoric” that show him to be passionate about what he writes about. He explained the inspiration from the life and work of Ken SaroWiwa, a Nigerian writer, television producer and environmental activist who was executed by his government following his protests against environmental degradation by an oil exploration company in his home area. He finished by saying he was sending his book, his ‘baby’ delivered by The Writers Guild Kenya, to go and ‘haunt’ the world, a book dedicated not to “the modern day Pharisees, brutes, queens of insanity, wolves and bandits, swindlers, priests without faith, auctioneers of the nation, assassins of hope and butchers of freedom, robots and the soulless.”
A cake was cut to celebrate the occasion and Ethiopian Coffee was served at the end of the launch that had seen The Writers Guild Kenya add another published book to its portfolio, with the event having been attended by other authors basking in the shadow of Writers Guild Kenya such as Munira Hussein of “Unfit of Society”, poet Patrick Lavince of ‘Lust of my Ink” and Brian Kasaine of “Around the Campfire”, among others in attendance, books published by them. It affirmed its place as a space for writers who seek to be the best they can be in their quest to serve humanity and God through reading and writing. They also have a number of other published books in line and one can only be as hopeful and determined as a writer to keep writing and contribute meaningfully to the literary scene as Tom Mwiraria has.
Congratulations Tom Mwiraria for encouraging other writers that it is possible to fight for what we believe in through the power of the pen. Indeed, may ;The land of Bones’ go and haunt the world.
To get the book, contact Tom Mwiraria through-0710792469 or Writers Guild Kenya through-0751562750
Kimathi Makini is a student of Medicine and Surgery at University of Nairobi and a passionate Writer with Writers Guild Kenya. He hopes to create a brand of his own ‘Surgeon Diaries’. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org