A much-awaited meeting of Port Moresby writers was held last Friday in the Kuri Dom Building at the Waigani campus of the University of PNG.
And, apart from the good roll up of 21 people who attended the meeting, many others sent emails to register their interest to be involved in future events.
Many people thanked me for the concept and said they looked forward to getting involved in what we will be doing in Port Moresby.
When the meeting began, I welcomed participants and outlined the rationale for floating the idea, including the need to formally organise writers in Port Moresby through an association.
I mentioned that this association will facilitate and promote the work of writers, nurture their development, give them publicity and market their work.
I added that there is further need to encourage a reading and writing culture, a literary culture, among the general population, and especially within schools and learning institutions in the national capital.
Sakarepe Kamene, who is an established and widely read author and Linguistics academic at UPNG, highlighted the respect that writers command from other people when they write well.
He said writers should go back to their villages and communities and ask what the people think are important matters to write about and record. In particular, he mentioned the power of writing.
Mr Kamene supported the concept of organising writers, providing a voice for them in PNG and getting their work to a wider audience. He gave his undivided support to the concept.
Michael Uglo, who taught Science at UPNG but is now a freelance writer and has already, written a science text book, gave a unique insight into the journey of a writer and how writing leaves a legacy.
All participants in the meeting appreciated his presentation and gave him thunderous applause at the end of his talk.
Corney Korokan Alone gave a powerful talk to motivate those present on the importance of writing. He highlighted what the Crocodile Prize is doing to create interest among writers and the incentive of its annual prizes.
Helen Kuli of the Department of Education, who is a very talented writer in her own right, supported the concept and recounted her own struggles in getting work published as well as getting people interested in what others are writing.
She said she has written many articles and can now consider them for publication.
The next step is to start the process of formalising an entity for writers in Port Moresby. We are already issuing invitations for interested writers in Port Moresby to join us and be part of this development.