By Momodou Jarju
Young aspiring writers have disclosed their desire to inspire their colleagues into writing after undergoing a four-day training themed: “Pen Your Own Book.”
The summer training which was aimed at amplifying the writing skills of young Gambian writers and to motivate them in publishing books, was sponsored by the US Embassy and organized by the American Corner from the 22nd to the 23rd July and from 4th to 5th August 2019. Eighteen emerging writers were trained and each is expected to submit a write-up on ‘NEVER AGAIN’. The anthology resonates with the families of victims who have suffered injustice during the reign of former president Yahya Jammeh, and now clamour for justice to prevail.
Saidou A. A. Bah, one of the participants said the training will help improve their writing skills and knowledge especially in writing short stories and poetry.
“We have so many talented young writers in The Gambia but they are not helped or given assistance,” Bah said.
Mr. bah, said his submission for the anthology ‘‘NEVER AGAIN’’, will be a poem on tribalism. “I have some of my manuscript that I wrote ten years back at Junior School Level. But because of financial constraints, I could not publish a book,” he said.
Safiatou Bojang, another participant said the training was a stepping stone for them. She said she would not have had the rudimentary skills of writing if she did not receive any training. She promised to submit a poem for the anthology. “I know the basic terms and skills needed for writing, which I did not know before,” she said.
Jariatou Jallow another participant from Bundung, said as a beginner, she would write poems and short stories to inspire and motivate his fellow youth. She however disclosed that the challenges she is grappling with is the unavailability of public libraries; that young writers need such places to go to and read and write. She implored the relevant authorities to address this issue.
Modou Lamin Age-Almusaf Sowe, the facilitator of the training and editor of the anthology, said the book “is the destiny of young men and women who are at crossroads and looking for directions in a world which has lost its bearings.”