Tusiimukye inspires fellow youth to write, publish

Born in the south western Uganda district of Rukingiri, Daniel Tusiimukye a mechanical engineering student at Makerere University prefers to identify himself as a writer,  publisher and a public speaker.

He says his love for writing started in his senior six vacation when he wrote a book that he later published.

“Having published by first book at 19, I had found it hard getting my manuscript accepted by publishing houses. After finally getting through the process and watching my book win awards and accolades not only in Uganda but Africa wide, I felt the ardent need to change the narratives. I felt belief in myself and belief in the impact that literature from young writers could bring to Uganda and Africa,” he narrates.

He says later, he got the idea to start a publishing house that he named:  The Iconic Publications.

“This birthed the idea to awaken the dreams of the writers as young as I was. I started The Iconic Publications as a platform for the youths to share their write-ups to the society.”

He says by the end of 2020, he  had published about six  books, which saw the number double the following  year in 2021 and he later got to do international publications with writers from South Sudan and Kenya.

Tusiimukye says that having been admitted to Makerere on government sponsorship, this was an opportunity to spread the gospel of writing to fellow students.

“Since then, I have been able to reach out to about 2000 students in schools in Western Uganda in talks on how to get government sponsorship on merit and how best they can engage in writing to impact the nation,” he says.

He says he uses social media to market his books as well as doing reviews in the media, tricks he says he teaches his fellow youths.

Tusiimukye says in 2020 he was nominated in the poetry books category at the Annual Mulher Forte African Literature Awards in Botswana for his first book, Golden Arrow.

“In the same year, I won an international poetry recognition award from Blind Cards Entertainment at the 2020 Antarag International Poetry Festival in Mumbai, India, for the poem, ‘Blessed By a Woman.’In July 2021, I was awarded African Honoree Author’s Award in Lonehill, South Africa with 260 other African authors for my poetry book Golden Arrow.”

He says he was won so many other accolades because of his writing works and says he seeks to inspire fellow youths to emulate him.


In his attempt to make fellow youths fall in love with writing, Tusiimukye says he is challenged by the fact that not many Ugandans love reading and writing.

“The reading culture in Uganda and Africa has gone down over the years save for the digitalization and the availability of the books online,” he says.

He says because the reading culture is low it is difficult to interest fellow youths in writing.

“Marketing the works of young writers to the readers’ community is a challenge as many people want to read works from established businessmen, influencers and politicians.”

He however says because of the presence of social media, he is able to market and promote the literature works for his fellow youths

“In future, I plan to expand the ability of The Iconic Publications in the digital age. We are now at a stage where soft copies and e-books are more preferred to hard copies. My expansion and enhancement plans are aimed at promoting e-books and audio books because that’s the future,” he says.

He asks government to support youths who have startups with seed funding as one of the ways to create employment.

“The youth startups could give birth to the next factories, employment spots and the next biggest tax paying entities in the country. They should be supported,” he says.

To fellow youth, he says this life is about believing in one’s self.

“Age is just a number. At whatever age one is, he can always impact and change the world. You can be 15 years old and be the solution to problems that have existed for 50 years; we should utilize the digitilised age to bring the changes that the generations before us couldn’t bring up,” he says.

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