Her appearance at the Abuja based radio station, Nigeria Info, helped to unveil the stuff the 12 year-old author, Miss Magdalene Attah, is made of. It was on the Children’s Day, May 27, sequel to an invitation to serve as a temporary presenter by the radio station as part of the Children’s Day celebrations. Magdalene left no one in doubt about her aspiration and quest for greatness. She said: “Although my father wants me to be a lawyer, I know I am already a writer, and I want to be like Wole Soyinka and Chimamanda Adichie.”
Recalling how she became a writer, she said: “ My motivation to write the book entitled Amari and the Princess came when some of my friends started writing short stories and brought to me to critique, knowing that I read voraciously, and after reading through, I frankly told them that they were below standard and childish stories. Some felt insulted and bluntly told me, ‘If you condemn our stories, why can’t you write your own story? If you know so much, let us see’. I saw their outburst as a fair challenge for me to write my own story. It was the challenge from my friends that eventually spurred me into writing; and while I was putting the words together, my father saw me writing one day and required to read the script.
“After going through some pages of the manuscript, he applauded my effort and promised to publish it when I finished, After a long period due to school work, I eventually completed the book, and the manuscript was promptly edited and the interview I had with The Sun Newspaper, which promoted my ingenuity, helped to expose the book project, which promptly attracted a London publisher, Author House, based in London. Thereafter, communication was opened and agreement was reached.”
The ten-chapter book is an undulating narrative of an imaginary poor girl called Amari. It is a simple fiction narrated from the bubbling mind of an innocent girl, who tries to recreate her moral home lessons into a novel. Magdalene’s careful selection of the local village name, Amari, gives her out as one who has strong ties with her Nasarawa State village. Her story setting brings to fore Magdalene’s imaginary ability in creating an intriguing storyline that is also adaptable. Considering her age, Magdalene has shown that good education helps in bringing out the true innate capabilities of a child, whether in arts, science or other areas. Her impressive articulation and imaginary knitting of the stories marks her out as budding writer. In the opening chapter, “A Feeling,” the little author straightaway establishes who Amari is, with her strong description.
Each of the ten chapters of the book is short, which helps in explaining the fact that a young girl is the one writing. However, her consistency in carrying the reader along in her narrative depicts her as a talented story teller, who, if well nurtured, would surely turn out to be a great novelist. For instance, the way she introduces her main characters, such as Farella, Ediga, Oneshi, Tamera, Adamu, Iyinoga, Prosperous, Obingye, Otuwosu, Ogbose, Aberiy Alexia and Amari, the protagonist, and interweaving every line into an interesting plot is a plus to her.
That a girl of the age of Magdalene could write a fiction and bring out a book must not only be commended but be applauded, and the publisher recognizes her ingenuity by saying thus: “The literary work by Magdalene reflects the purity of thought and the innocence by which a child sees through the environment, and, by this, she, at the young age of twelve, has translated her short life experiences into a book entitled Amari and the Princess, and that puts her in the enviable league of child prodigies with an eye for the future.”
Indeed, Magdalene has made her readers to know that she is voracious reader through her story’s setting. According to the publishers, it is “a story of folly in treachery, reward for humility, and how steadfast honesty eventually led to the triumph over poverty by the lowly.”
Culled from: http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=68523