Six months have flown by since we acquired our office space in Kisasi and we are amazed at the progress that we have seen here at QG. The books that we have been waiting for are in their final stages and we trust they will be launched this month. The three titles were put together by the members of Uganda Faith Writers Association (UFWA) and are a testimony not only to the talent of the writers but also to the ability of our Father God to complete what He starts in us. This is the fruit of all the labour that has been put into the organisation these past few years and it is indeed a beautiful harvest. Watch this space for more details about the launch and our journey to get the books out there into the hands of the public.
Over these past months we have come face to face with our strengths and weaknesses. Personally, as a Writer in Residence here at QG, I have realised the importance of being fully committed to whatever God puts in our hearts. I arrived from the UK with no idea what was ahead and when I joined QG and UFWA, I was of the mentality that I needed something to do and this would be a good way to fill my time until I knew exactly what it was that I wanted to do. Since then God has opened my eyes to the great things that can and will be done by this organisation. This ‘vision’ has fuelled a passion to see this organisation reach the greatest heights that it can reach. We will be updating you in future posts about our vision and goals.
The writing classes which we started over two months ago are an example of the impact we can have as an organisation. The main vision of Quiet Garden Publishing is to raise a generation of readers and writers and the writing classes are step number one to fulfilling this dream. Because we are a small organisation, we have had to take baby steps to promote the writing classes and to find the people out there who have been nurturing the desire to write but have not been able to pursue it mainly because they did not know how. Our ‘baby steps’ have been: creating flyers which we posted on social media and other outlets, and mainly word of mouth through our members contacting their inner circles, their churches etc. We have learnt the hard way that marketing is an ongoing thing, not something that starts only when we have a class running. We made the mistake of only promoting classes when they were starting and not continuing our promotions as the classes were running so as to create a pool of interested contacts whom we could get in touch with once the new season started. These are lessons that we are taking to heart and we are making sure that we better our strategy from now on.
We have also learned that we need to be more focused on the members of UFWA and we need to create more activities and content for them to participate in/contribute to. That is why this blog is going to be used as a platform to showcase the work of all our members as well as the work of the students in the writing class. We hope that the joy of seeing their work published online, as well as having a link to their work which can be accessed by family members/friends/future employers, will motivate our members and students to write more. We are also focusing on creating anthologies of the selected work of our students and this will be published on an annual basis.
This is where we are now. We are going to endeavour to post weekly updates of both the QG writing classes and UFWA’s activities. We know that this is just the beginning of a great journey for us particularly on social media. Please find our Facebook page here and our twitter here. We are learning to reach out to the public more so please bear with us as we grow as an organisation. We are so grateful for your support and encouragement, particularly to our members and to our partners, including Lawrence Darmani and Media Associates International. We trust that these partnerships will continue to bear eternal fruit.