Campuserian meets the first girl at her age to publish a book in Kwale County. Zealous and ambitious, she is the ball of fire destined for greater heights not even the sky is her limit.
Here is her story.
My name is Asha Ali Boya, an aspiring young poet and author twenty years of age. Currently, I am a second year undergrad in Moi University pursuing Bachelors of Arts in Education specifically in French and Islamic religion.
My writing journey began way back in high school, however, I went on a ‘sabbatical’ to fully concentrate on my academics until recently in October when I ‘pushed the pencil’ and published my first book entitled Niende Wapi Yatima na Mashairi Mengine. The book which is expected to be launched on 22nd of December at Ukunda Polytechnic in Diani Kwale County, constitutes of Swahili poems that touch on various aspects in life. The poems focus on contemporary issues in the society as it sheds light on them. As an upcoming teacher, I hope this book gets a chance to be taught and examined in secondary schools.
Why did I write this book? Well, as lady I couldn’t stand the day to day afflicting news of young girls’ genitals being mutilated, oppression of the orphans and the rampant runaway corruption; vices that are deeply rooted in Kenya and Africa at large. As a lady, I want to champion for gender equality, it is unbelievable that there are some communities especially in my home county where girls are made to believe that their place in the society is in the kitchen not in class. That is why I made the decision of countering the points in question in through poetry.
So far, am very happy with the start thus I thank everyone who supported in jump starting my writing career. I couldn’t have done it all alone but biggest shout out goes to the Kwale Pen People group KPP which I joined in November last year when I was almost finalizing my book. Kwale Pen People is an association for young, talented writers in Kwale County, the association is one of the pillars that contributed greatly in the publication of this book. Through it, I got a platform to improve my writing skills and interact with other writers who cannot express themselves better in any other way except through pen and paper.
Poetry is not my nerve center, I also write stories. I recall writing a short love story in high school that my friends really liked. At the moment I have plans to write an English novel which will be in the royal French setting under the theme of love. Hopefully, my audience should expect it in the month of June 2019.
As a writer I have experienced many challenges but I have never had a cure for writer’s block. It affects the flow of ideas and sometimes I lack rhyming words when I need them instantly hence forcing me to take a break for a while until the moment I can think straight. Support has been another major challenge not only for me, as I believe other upcoming writers lack the basic identification support. No one recognizes us nor the talent we express in writings. Most readers have already made up their minds that they can only read a piece of writing from a particular author notably the big names which have been in the industry for long thus it is difficult to change this kind of attitude.
Contemplating the trying moment full of difficulties as I was publishing my first book. At one point I was contemplating on throwing in the towel as I had to shoulder the high cost of publication, its not an easy venture. I felt for my parents since they have an obligation at hand to pay my school fees yet they had to bear the publishing expenses. However, I am grateful to them as they supported me tooth and nail through hook and crook until I sew up my writing career.
My role model is Danielle Steel, I hope that one day I will be a famous writer like her. Locally, there is Suleiman Ndaro, my good friend who has compelled me to publish my first book.
I believe humility is the key to success therefore I hope to establish myself as a prolific writer locally and regionally, with the grace of God I hope to reach the epitome of my career in the near future.