Namibia: Popya - Shikulo Publishes 'The Bitterness of Life'

Novelist, scriptwriter and motivational speaker Johannes Shikulo released his second book, entitled 'The bitterness of life'.

Shikulo, who just graduated from the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) with a bachelor's degree in English, told Youth Corner that his dream has always been to spit the truth and reality through writing.

"I chose that field because I have always been interested in literature, and a couple of friends told me it leads to great career options too," said Shikulo, who is also a legal advisor of the Namibian Authors Association.

Shikulo said 'The Bitterness of Life' is a fiction book about a young charming man who, at birth, was rejected by his father and had to face the bitter aspect of life.

"I grew up in an extremely isolated town where I didn't have a sense of belonging. I felt voiceless as a kid and I felt alone. Eventually, as I grew older, I ended up finding my power and voice through writing," noted the 23-year-old Shikulo, adding that his dream of being an author was realised after he published his first novel, A successful clever thief, in 2017.

As an author, he believes literature creates a way for young Namibians to record their thoughts and experiences in a way that is accessible to others, through fictionalised accounts of the experience.

He said "Literature suggests a higher art form; merely putting words on a page doesn't necessarily equate to creating literature. However, it is very important to young Namibians because it connects them with larger truths and ideas in society.

Shikulo wishes to touch and transform hearts through the power of words.

According to him, the book presents the image of society from a different perspective that might not be very popular but important.

Like every creative field, writing is one of the jobs nowadays that has gained much popularity and with the advent of large availability of content over the internet, competition is always on the peak, which is sort of a challenge to Shikulo.

He also mentioned that loyalty and revenue remain another burden to many authors in the country. "To get the things going in terms of recognition and exposure, I have to compromise on the part of payments and loyalty even after getting a correct platform. Either recognition or loyalty - one of them suffers. This is the major challenge I faced in publishing my work," he said.

He advised the youth to focus on their goals and always try to encourage others who want to do something different.

Shikulo is working on his third book, which is expected to be out later this year, while his two books are available on Amazon. - ashikololo@nepc.com.na

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