For Gloria Kiconco, writing is more than simply documenting, or magnifying, or taking responsibility for fixing the problems that diffuse through her society. Apparently, she does not earn enough satisfaction from doing what most writers can ably do. By detailing her thoughts in a language she has mastered, and conflated into the poems that make her collection of aesthetically pleasing zines, which make a project titled SOLD OUT, she eclipses that.
Gloria Kiconco is a young, budding Ugandan born writer who started writing when she was younger, before leaving for the United States, where she spent most of her formative years, and returning to Uganda to be, amongst others, the writer, art critic, and spoken word performer that we know her to be today.
Her work is, she said when we hosted her, as the author of the month, for the Turn The Page book club meeting on August 5, 2016, a body of work about things happening in Uganda, but people do not talk about. Her themes of interest vary, from personal to public explorations of experiences which could best be described as a study of mythology, a topic which helps her relate her story by enabling both a moral take and a supplementation to the same.
Gloria’s work is so engrossing. It does things to you. When she performs it, it makes you want to dance. Some may find it hard to relate to (as she, for example, references seasons beyond our locality, uses words so “big”, and speaks in a foreign accent), but what is there to expect of someone who is a genius? The glory of Gloria is that she is aware of her innate talent, and has harnessed well enough to illustrate her thoughts with an ease not so many can ably appreciate. To that, she comments that she cannot judge for them, and does not care how they appreciate it. All she desires is to see words arranged in a certain, nice way.
Gloria’s work addresses several social and/or topical issues, from patriarchy (in Bloodletting), to feminism (in The —– Unicorn OR A History of Mythical Beasts Long Gone) to love (in Two RE: Dress) to elected migration (in Aspens in Autumn) even though she attempts to abstain from being consumed by them herself. She is an African writer who is worth note.
Gloria’s process of writing starts on a notebook, which she keeps on herself, and results into well packaged pocket size zines that go for the average price of a beer each. Her work is available on the online book store and can be purchased by following this link. She, also, regularly performs at Poetry In Session events which happen in Kampala every after two months.