Celebrating East African Writing!

The Person of the Writer

Women do not always have to write about women, or gay men about gay men. Indeed, something good and new might happen if they did not. ˜ Kathryn Hughes

Now if you are the kind of person whose eyes read ahead and got stuck at the word ‘gay’, I … I have no words for you. But if you are the kind that I trust you are, then I have no doubt that you agree with Hughes.

Someone, not sure who, but I have a feeling it was Ms. Lavingia, my high school Principal because I hear her voice, once read a passage aloud at a school assembly.

It went something to this effect; ‘The contention that William Shakespeare had to be a King to understand the royal

True Representation?

persona as well as he must have to write the royal plays (King John, Richard II, Henry IV part 1, Henry IV part 2, Henry V, Henry VI part 1, Henry VI part 2, Henry VI part 3, Richard III, Henry VIII) is as flawed the assumption that Shakespeare had to be a misogynist to write The Taming of the Shrew, or a deeply depressed soul to write the tragedies (Romeo and Juliet, Coriolanus, Titus Andronicus, Timon of Athens, Julius Caesar, Macbeth, Hamlet, Troilus and Cressida, King Lear, Othello, Antony and Cleopatra, Cymbeline).  If those contentions were true, I wonder then, which of the magical creatures he was to write A Mid-summer Night’s Dream.’

It took me a while to read up on all of Shakespeare’s works, as well as look up the meaning of the word misogynist, but by the time I was done, Ms. Lavingia’s work was done. It is my belief that this reading, as well as the others she made on many a Friday morning were meant to cultivate an interest in creative thinking and solution finding processes, not just in Literature and the Arts but as well as in all the other subjects.

But there was one more thing that was accomplished.

Whether or not Shakespeare was royal or peasant, whether or not the author of Shakespeare works was his self, or Edward de Vere, I know one thing. With some observation and a little research (or a lot of research as in the case of Chimamanda Adichie’s Purple Hibiscus and Lalita Tademy’s Cane River), the creative mind has the ability to create worlds that so strongly mirror the real world that the reader is left breathless and completely entertained in fictional stories.

Before you go off into that critical debate, allow me to introduce you to this week’s readings.

We begin with Jaimin Vyas’ The Pens: What terrible secret could be so hideous about pens that everyone who knew about them regretted knowing about them?

Then we shall venture into a discovery of the 11th Commandment by Martin Bosire: Rumor still has it that grandpa looked older than he actually was on that day. So old did he look that it is said that an older lady surrendered her seat to him in the already full Matatu.

We close the readings with Butterfly People by George Kinyua: “Then what seems to be the matter? I can see it in your eyes.” She did not know how to tell him. She tried to search for the words but there were none for what she was about to tell him.

Would you like your story to feature here, please send in your work to Go here to see submission guidelines.

I would like to repeat and clarify last week’s Call out for Poetry. After very many requests from you, we are happy to announce that we will have a Poetry exhibition here every First Thursday of the Month. To have your poems on the gallery show, please send them in to us ( – Make sure that you mark clearly on the subject line Poetry for the Blog) every week by the last Thursday of every month. The first poetry deadline will be this Thursday 29th of April, 2010. And the first gallery show will be on Thursday 6th of May 2010. We will be looking for themed poetry that could likely be added to our performance portfolio. For details see this page.

Thank you very much for your continued support of the Storymoja Blog!



This entry was posted on April 26, 2010 by in Writing.
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