MASERU – Rethabile Ntereke aspires to write more children stories and mentor young writers to enable them to find their own voices. Ntereke, 31, who comes from Qacha’s Nek but currently stays in Maseru East is a writer, a poet and a photographer although she has a full time job. She has been writing since she was 12, mainly poetry and short stories but in 2019 she decided to focus more on writing.
She went through Iketsetseng and Hermitage primary schools and St Catherine’s high school before enrolling with the National University of Lesotho. She then went to the University of the Free State where she obtained qualifications in Social Work and Business administration. “I developed more love for writing during my Standard 7 English Language class while reading the book Poetry for Pleasure, which fuelled the flame. I had an incredibly passionate language teacher, ’Me ’Malesenyeho, who helped me discover the magic in written words,” she recalls.
She says she got recognition mostly by poems performed through a poetry collective three-member group called Women of the Well that she is part of. Members started writing and performing poetry in high school.
“To be honest one of my dreams is to write a few more children’s stories and doing more to mentor young writers to find their own voices. I would also love to do some collaboration with some local graphic designers and photographers, which is currently where my mind is. Beyond that, I admire the work of Crystal Swain-Bates, Button Poetry and P4CM.”
“I think storytelling and publishing in Lesotho is still growing and needs people who are committed and prepared to work hard to see their projects through. We still have a long way to go but I am so proud and excited by the young minds making waves in that regard.
“I have had the pleasure of working with Lipstick and Scars Publishing and realising just how many talented youths are realising their dreams. It is beautiful and encouraging,” she says.
She has written a poem Stories Untold which was published on her you tube channel in addition to short stories; If Willow Trees Could Talk and Song in November, which are not yet published. “One of my favourite writings is Keratiloe which became the children’s book I am currently working on I; am able to relate to the story entirely,” she adds.
“I especially love poetry that is my first love, so certainly the poems, especially those that speak to identity, the strength and beauty in femininity, and fighting for one’s dreams. I am currently working on a Sesotho children’s book that is coming this year and I’m super excited about it and hope it has the same effect on young children and their parents alike.”