Nigerian writer urges preservation of literary heritage amid writer shortage

Ndifreke Ukpong, a distinguished Nigerian writer, has highlighted a critical issue in Nigeria’s literary scene—the potential shortage of writers.

Ukpong who began his writing career at a young age,  has already published over 26 books in various genre.

He is driven by a love for storytelling, not for financial rewards.

In a frank conversation, Ukpong voiced his concerns about the waning interest in writing among young people, noting their preference for current trends and financial gains over developing their writing abilities.

 “We’re at risk of facing a writer shortage in Nigeria’s future,” he cautioned, calling for collective efforts to reverse this trend.

Ukpong clarified that his motivation for writing is not monetary but to inspire societal change and connect with readers on a profound level.

He urged the media and educational institutions to support and promote Nigerian literature and encourage more young people to read and write.

He said that this would help to preserve the country’s history, culture, and identity and inspire more people who might have lost interest in literature.

“Writing is not just a hobby; it is a profession that requires passion, dedication, and creativity. It is also a way of preserving our history, culture, and identity. Unfortunately, many youths today do not see writing as a viable or respectable career option.

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“They prefer to follow the trends and the money rather than their dreams and talents. This is why I fear that we might lack writers in the near future,” he said.

Ukpong emphasizes that the aspiration to become a writer is not bound by gender but is ignited by a deep-seated passion for the art of writing. He calls upon parents to nurture and support their children’s literary interests and to cultivate a respect for their cultural heritage as part of their development. By doing so, we can ensure that the rich tapestry of Nigerian storytelling continues to thrive for generations to come.

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