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Promise Thembisihle Chandilanga is a Malawian writer. She writes, according to her, more for the young. ‘I think my writing targets the youths more. To be more emphatic the female gender. I mostly talk about women, power and safety…from men. I tend to talk about day to day typical life setup of being a woman, what women face…on issues to do with sex and relationship. By the end of the day I want to have made sure that I am one of the female writers who write touching stories that move and teach people.
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I want to change the perspective of some issues that women face in communities all over the globe; talk about work, gender and fashion. I envision my writing to reach the masses all over the world, not only Malawi in the coming years.
Coming from a generation inspired by living giants like Nigeria’s Chimamanda Adichie we have no other option than to listen to Chandilanga.
‘Here is an excerpt from Strangers, one of her numerous stories.
BY PROMISE THEMBISIHLE CHANDILANGA
Look I am pissed right now, I can’t even focus straight am soooo pissed. I mean am just coming from being dumped by my Uncle Blesser and mom is getting on my nerves. This is the hundredth time mother and I had a fight. I mean come on whose mother always blabs about my weaknesses? It’s like my positive side is coated in an invisible gel and all she can see in me are red flags. I could have said I slammed the door going in my room but it’s a curtain so, yea….you can imagine lol. So that evening after falling my tantrums I went out of my room, spoke to nobody and went at a nearest Soshanguve. You see, there’s a certain soothing atmosphere in a club, the music, the jolly faces, drinks flowing, it’s like the outside world is shut out. So I sat on my table and drink to my miserable life. Some bellied-65-looking guy came and offered to buy me a drink, I looked at him and went, “When was the last time you bought your wife nsalu ya Java? Now instead of spending your money on independent girls like me, who have their own pockets at their disposal, buy your wife a cloth or something and she will appreciate.” Haahahaha you could have seen his face, anyway he left, someone had to remind these Mr.-open-your-legs-for-my-wallet guys to stay put. So I sat there and contemplated about my life. I am my parents’ only child, my mother fell pregnant when she was in secondary school, and together with my father they managed to raise me and finish their education. Now my father owns carpentry joinery and my mom is a nurse. To say the truth I have always had everything I want as an only child at my parents’ level but not their full attention. It’s either they are too busy or they just give me money to solve whatever I want even my school homework’s. Picture that lol. I have always lead that life up till now am 19 years old and applying for college. The only person I find solace in is my grandmother, my mom’s mother, she stays at Chiradzulu in Mwandama village. Well she is this nice mischievous little cozy woman with wide knowing eyes you just can’t resist to talk to. She owns a farm there which makes staying with her fun and well she makes me feel wanted and….. “Bad breakup?” I look across my table to see….. Well don’t get me wrong here, there’s a certain degree of handsomeness you just can’t ignore. Though he had sat down it showed that he was tall, and talk about looks. He was like those type of guys you only see in Nivea for men or Vaseline for men adverts. I closed my hanging mouth, fidgeted a bit and forced myself to speak. “That would be an understating way to describe it,” I responded, “The world exploded, and everything went red but no one noticed. I was left alone picking up the shatters, while everyone went about their business.” He nodded, “I get it. …..Yeah I understand what it’s like.” Looking at him, I doubted it. He looked the heartbreaking sorta guy. I might have showed it on my face because he laughed. “What? You doubting?” he asked, “Look, I was left at the altar” I gasped unbelieving, “Ooooooh, for real?? I thought stuff like those only happened in movies.” “Well my life has been a movie,” he answered and sipped his beer. “By the way my name is Trouble Mashasha …..” The evening passed on like that, I get to know Trouble and he did likewise. He was someone one could easily talk to, he had an easy way of loosening my tongue and by the time we left and exchanged numbers I felt like I had stripped naked straight in his face. In the following week Trouble and I met a great deal and get to know each other more. He said he worked at a certain business firm and he was single. Well, that’s all he said about himself, it didn’t matter anyway, or did it?