Monday, 19 October 2009
BY CHUKS NWANNE
The hall was full of dignitaries, including notable writers such Nathan Englander, Doreen Baingana, Jackie Kay, Binyavanga Wainaina, who took guests through some of their works. Also present were two of Nigeria’s notable literary figures, Prof. Mr. Karen King Aribisala and poet Odia Ofeimun.
On the spotlight too was Eghosa Imasuen, a medical doctor and writer. The literary evening was organised to round off the weeklong creative writers workshop organized by Farafina Trust and sponsored by Nigerian Breweries Plc. Initiated by the award-winning Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, the evening saw many Nigerians give account of how book reading has positively affected their lives. It was a fun-filled evening.
Television talk show host, Funmi Iyanda had the opportunity to tell the story of her beginnings, while Adesua Onyenokwe, another TV personality and publisher of TW magazine, urged parents to implant the reading culture in their children, especially at tender age. The event also featured book signings sessions, while the self-style Egberipapa 1 of Bayelsa, Timaya was on ground to thrill the gathering. As usual, the I don Blo singer, who is currently having difficult times with his one time lover, Empress Njama, had his Dem Mama Soldiers on stage, as he took the audience through his repertoire.
The objective of the initiative is to promote literary skills development of young writers who will become the future Wole Soyinkas and the Chinua Achebes. About 20 budding writers chosen from over 2000 entries, participated at the creative writing workshop that kicked off in Lagos on September 17.
International writers such as Caine Prize winner, Binyavanga Wainaina, Pushcart Prize winner Nathan Englander, Guardian Fiction Prize winner, Jackie Kay and Zoe Heller, a Booker Prize nominee, took them through the rudiments of writing.