A 21-year-old Malawi College of Accountancy (MCA) student Shailene Patmos has published a crime mystery novel called Hunting Rhino.
Speaking at the book launch on Friday at coffee culture in Blantyre, Shailene explained that Hunting Rhino is a crime mystery novel about an ambitious detective named Jerry Wota who teams up with a female murder convict to track down the untraceable serial killer, Rhino.
“It is a nice novel and worth reading. It is about an ambitious detective named Jerry Wota who teams up with a female murder convict to track down the untraceable serial killer, Rhino. But the closer they get to unveiling the truth, the more predicaments rise, the more deadly the case becomes”, she explained.
Patmos who studies Business Management and Entrepreneurship said she likes to stand out and challenges herself by doing something different.
“I used to be known for writing romance stories and I needed to do something out of my comfort zone, yet still in line with my passion. So, I have been a fan of mysteries for a very long time. I remember, I used to read the seven series by Enid Blyton when I was in Secondary School, and it has been always a dream of to write stories of that kind.
“I don’t want to settle on just one genre. I want to explore many genres, specifically, science and adventures. I want to challenge my fellow writers to have miscellaneous imaginations. We should think outside the box and bring out stories that would amaze people,” she said.
Shailene encouraged her fellow writers to fight for their gifts. She said a lot of people are reluctant towards pursuing their dreams because they feel like the industry is flooded so that there is no room for them to put out their ideas, whereas others just feel scared, things she said are not worth to be followed by writers.
” Well, I am encouraging my fellow writers to pick up the pen or turn on that computer and that draft, script or poem, no matter what a challenge as this is how we writers learn and grow. I know it is easy to come up with a story but it is hard to get it all done. Nonetheless, it is worth it and satisfying when you finally finish the project. So, let us not throw away good stories before they are even appreciated by the world,” said Shailene.
The young writer said to come up with her book, she has passed through a lot of heavy challenges, one of which is lack of financial support to host events for her book.
“We did not have any sponsors to pull off events like this book launch. It was not easy. At times it was getting emotionally and psychologically stressful. But I thank God for he has been there through it all and we are finally having a launch of the book,” she said.
Responding on how best the government is doing in the promotion of writing industry, the young writer said the government is performing well in the promotion of writing industry, citing the introduction of various platforms for writing promotions.
“I can say, we are getting there. Platforms are being introduced for promotions, writers are being recognized and we are getting a lot of support than before, so this is good progress,” she said.
She then called on government and other related stakeholders to continue investing much in writing industry and take the industry to the top level.
In his remarks, Founder and Chief Executive Officer at Innov8 MW Peter Banda congratulated Shailene for coming up with the book.
He said Shailene has proven to be a courageous young writer who, regardless of any challenge people fear to meet, still knows how capable she is in the art industry.
“This is a very nice book which I believe will change lives of Malawians and even those who are abroad. Let me tell those who say they cannot achieve things in their industries. Had it been Shailene was thinking like that, she could have never written this amazing book. Always work hard and do everything you are good at with your all heart. Nothing is impossible and tough as you put effort, ” said Banda.
Apart from being a writer, Shailene is also an artist, actress and she advocates for financial literacy. The ‘Hunting Rhino’ novel is currently being sold at an affordable price of K5,000.