by Alyssa Laube
For most writers, getting a book published is the end-all, be-all. It’s a milestone to work towards for years; not only does the author have to write and revise the story, but they also have to find a publisher and discuss all of the details that come with distributing a book. However, for Robert Mulolo, the aspirations didn’t stop there. His first novel to be released in 2012, Why Me?, told the tale of a young woman’s struggle to thrive in the face of adversity.
“The basis of the story, when I first decided to write it, was that I wanted to display a character who had an uphill battle from the get go,” said Robert, about the inspiration behind his novel. “I wrote about Renee and created that character. She never knew her father. Her mother, running from taking responsibility for her actions, would blame her for the bad misfortune she’s experienced in her life, and her half-sister would be absent from her life unless there was a need to have her around. The story covers the span of 10 years and shows Renee trying to better her life, and she encounters three men during that time. The story touches on family, betrayal, abuse and the idea of love.”
After the publication of Why Me?, Robert felt that he had to make “a big announcement” with the book, and do more than simply release it to his audience. It was then that he felt inclined to host book readings and signings, but because the narrator was a woman, he decided that they would not do the character justice. It was this complication that eventually led to his next monumental success.
“I wrote the book in the voice of a woman…so I decided to hire a performer to [read it] out. After seeing one part of my book being acted out, I had the idea for the play. It’s not yet ready as more funds are required, but by the end of the year, it will either be on stage or we will have a date for it.”
With luck, the play will add more depth and excitement to an already well-written novel. The dramatics and emotivity of theatre has enhanced story lines countless times before; Les Misérables, Crime and Punishment, and The Grapes of Wrath are just a few on the list, and act as great inspirations for the developing adaptation of Why Me?. The play may not have a set date yet, but stay tuned to Robert’s Facebook for updates (such as his next novel, Just Chance It) and purchase your own copy of Why Me? at these three locations to prepare for Robert’s big release.
“Storytelling is all about showing a new reality to others, and that’s what you must do as a writer. Give your reader an opportunity to get out of the crappy reality they know and allow them to be the witness to an amazing story,” said Robert, and Why Me? should be a great escape.