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CommunityThe Dreamwork Collective’s call out to the UAE’s budding writers

For many of us, one of the best things about living in the UAE is getting to mix with a diverse community of knowledgeable professionals and talented creatives from across the globe. Indeed, Dubai-resident Kira Jean founded the publishing company, The Dreamwork Collective, out of a desire to give a platform to our region’s most fascinating voices, and shine a light on the huge range of writers who live here. With a strong social conscience and an...
Harriet ShephardAugust 12, 20219 min
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Dreamwork CollectiveShutterstock

For many of us, one of the best things about living in the UAE is getting to mix with a diverse community of knowledgeable professionals and talented creatives from across the globe.

Indeed, Dubai-resident Kira Jean founded the publishing company, The Dreamwork Collective, out of a desire to give a platform to our region’s most fascinating voices, and shine a light on the huge range of writers who live here.

With a strong social conscience and an inclusive attitude, the homegrown business now delivers inspiring works from Middle East authors to bookshelves throughout the world. 

Empowering the UAE’s best writers

Fatima Daoui Author
Fatima Daoui, author

A former therapist and life coach, Kira wants to encourage creative individuals to bring their ideas to life. As well as publishing books, the company also aims to nurture fresh talents by offering coaching and training sessions for up-and-coming writers.

“Unfortunately, it was losing a childhood friend that really gave me the push I needed to start The Dreamwork Collective,” she says. 

“She was a brilliant writer, but she was always so busy writing for others that she never got round to publishing her own books and sharing what she was really passionate about. Just before she died, she told me that it was one of her biggest regrets. 

“That really struck a chord with me and made me think about how many books we must be losing, simply because people don’t know how to get themselves published, or because they think they’re too old, too young or that it’s just never the right time to do it.”

Undiscovered talents 

Since launching in 2017, Kira has made it her mission to help people figure out what their “dream work” or passion project really is. 

“We want to make sure that nobody else dies with a book still inside them,” she says. “Unlike the UK and the US, there aren’t many international publishing houses in the UAE. We want to elevate the region and share its best voices, stories and experts with the rest of the world.”

Publishing around six manuscripts a year, she describes her collective as “small, but mighty,” with a particular passion for helping new authors and under-represented voices.

“We’ve published work from all kinds of people, whether it’s teenage writers, single moms or those trying to transition out of a nine-to-five job and have a more meaningful, fulfilling career.

“We’re open to any kind of book too: fiction, non-fiction, self-help, cookery, it doesn’t matter. If there’s a need for it and there’s an audience out there who could benefit from it, we’re interested,” she adds.

A gathering of creative minds

Alexander Thomas
Alexander Thomas

Kira is now hoping to use the innovative company’s second Digital Summit, on Saturday, August 14, to inspire more people to explore the world of writing and publishing.

Featuring a full 12 hours of virtual talks, discussions and workshops, participants will get the opportunity to learn from renowned authors, experts in fields such as health, business and parenting, and staff from The Dreamwork Collective.

“We’ll be lifting the curtain on how publishing works, what being an author is like and how you get there,” she says.

“We have a really interesting program lined up. Whether you enjoy reading, writing or you’re just looking for some fresh inspiration, we have something for everyone. We’re pulling together literature lovers from across the region, giving them the opportunity to ask any questions they might have, and celebrating all the wonderful authors we work with.”

Highlights include a talk by Al Arabiya News anchor and author Fatima Daoui, who will be sharing her thoughts on young women at the start of their career, and a session on the challenges and realities of writing a book by author and entrepreneur Alexander Thomas.

The cost of attendance is Dh172, but as part of the brand’s mission to support underrepresented voices, 10 free tickets will be given away to those who might need a little extra support, including single moms, the unemployed or those who are going through a particularly difficult time. 

“We would hate it if the price was a barrier for people realizing their potential,” explains Kira.

“So, we’re asking our followers to nominate either themselves, a friend or a colleague who is deserving of a free ticket. We want as many people to join as possible.” 

To find out more, visit The Dreamwork Collective Instagramemail or go to the website.

Harriet Shephard

Harriet Shephard is an Abu Dhabi-based copywriter and freelance journalist with a particular focus on fitness, travel and lifestyle, which, along with good food, also happen to be her main passions when she's not typing away at her laptop.

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