By Wr. Winston Owino.
At around 1.00 p.m. I was in Ford Hall, our usual meeting venue. I busied myself with the sitting arrangement but then I noticed the blue, plastic chairs we always used were quite dusty. One of the Writers, Wr. Zakayo, agreed to help me out with wiping the dusty chairs.
At 1.30 p.m. Writers started trickling in. I asked Wr. Munira Hussein, who was the host of the day, how she felt about jihadism and why these jihadists operate under Islam. Before she finished explaining, a tall, dark guy I had greeted just after I had finished arranging the chairs asked me,
“What is it that you do not understand about the topic?”
Before I knew it, I was imbibing on the information this tall, dark guy had to offer. Never had I met a student who was sure of what he was saying. He had facts and figures at his fingertips from different times in history like he lived through them all. Listening to him was no different from listening to a history audio book. He poured out his facts to me, like he spent the whole night studying that particular question and predicted that I would bring the issue up.
At exactly 2.00 pm, we started off with reading an article with title ‘Managing your emotions is not my job’ by Hecate Demeter. How I look forward to meeting her or him one day. Whichever applies.
The article elicited all manner of reactions from the ladies and the gentlemen, sparking quite a heated debate. When Wr. Rumona approached me and asked if I could find a way of opening the windows, I knew that was my chance to escape the crossfire before words came hitting me like stray bullets.
I stayed outside for as long as I thought the debate would take. There came Wr. Cecilia Akinyi, with her effortlessly warm smile, stretching wide to reveal her teeth. I met her the day before for the first time at the Kenyatta University Career Week when we had gone to provide Career advise in the Writing field. Before then, we would only keep in touch via whatsapp texts.
When she was standing just in front of me, that was when I actually realized that she was in the company of two gentlemen.(I was caught up in her smile, I guess) One of the two men was Boniface Sagini, who launched his book Thrills and Chills, about a month ago. I did not know the other guy and I immediately forgot his name after being introduced to him. (I’m not usually this poor when it comes to retaining names.)
After the first guest who took us through ‘Digital money-making skills’, we had an amazing performance by Griffins the poet. His poems never age. Every time he takes to stage, it’s like we are listening to him for the first time. He always has us hooked especially to the ‘Call me Griffin, call this poetry’ line.
The second guest went on and on, pouring out knowledge on what it means to be a peace journalist, especially now that we are headed for the general election. I was struck by a statement she made, “You only know peace when you have found it.”
We had our very own cowboy; I call him the Kenyan Kenny Rodgers, winning our hearts with his country music. December 63 was the name of his latest song, which had us reflecting on Miss Elizabeth’s (our second guest) wise words on peace.
Silly me! How could I forget Timothy’s spoken word performance and the way it had us snapping our fingers hard in the air? I snapped so hard I almost thought my fingers would ignite.
How I thought Alejandro only exists in these Mexican films. We experienced the premiere of Kenya’s first soap opera when Zakayo and Mystic Venus, quiet a lovely lady decided to showcase a trailer which I believe was just a teaser of more to come. (Watch out for it. Coming soon!)
Our C.E.O. Mr. Dinda made the closing remarks after which Griffins the powerful poet, ended business of the day with a powerful prayer in his mother tongue.
Surprisingly, no one felt like going home. We stayed behind for at least another hour. Laughter, photos, lies, more laughter, more lies and more photos. We even started our own band. We did cover songs to almost every song that we could think of. From Nerea to kuliko Jana, to Kenny Rodgers’ gambler. (Watch out for our first album lol).
It is fun to be a Writer, it is even more fun to be a writer with a home: Writers Guild Kenya. All young people should be here because the experience is our of the world, the learning is real time and relevant…..Ooooh My, welcome home!
Some lessons from Writers Ekklessia; 3rd February
- We no longer go online, we live there. If we live there, then it’s time we figured out how we can make money from it, and grow our passion from it- Mr. Wanjala.
- When there is peace, there is no story to tell. Journalists thrive on conflicts and controversies, but does that mean that we should fuel such? No, we can tell our stories without causing further harm-Ms. Wanja Elizabeth
- Before you Write a story, can you stop and think if you can be responsible for all the things that you will write. If given a second chance, will you write the same? If not, then do not write the story-Ms. Wanja Elizabeth
- Peace is a strange thing. You might fail to define it, but when you find it, you will just know-Ms. Wanja Elizabeth
- Become your own gatekeeper in the articles you write. Do not use your noble gift to fuel animosity because we are meant to make better not destroy-Ms. Wanja Elizabeth
Further Links to Check out:
It’s always fun to learn with us. Welcome again on Friday, 10th February, 2017 at National Museum, Ford Hall from 2pm. Contact us through: +254707 97 16 66