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Shamini Flint

Author, Inspirational Speaker, Storyteller/Performer

Shamini Flint is an engaging, witty and inspirational speaker. She holds audiences of any age spellbound with tales of growing up in Malaysia and travelling the world in search of an identity (or at least a good curry). Her ability to discuss important issues in an accessible way is unparalleled.

Where were you born?

Penang, formerly Jewel of the Orient and now, as a result of rampant construction and destruction, a tarnished stone but with some charm still.

What other jobs have you had?

Easier to ask what jobs I haven’t had! I’ve been a lawyer, a stay-at-home mum, a teacher, a university lecturer, a seller of coffee (that no-one wanted to drink) and an author.

What themes are recurring in your work?

I write about things that worry me which is pretty much everything so recurring themes include the environment, law, politics, society and to calm myself down once in a while, a lot of sport.

What have been the highlights of your career?

As a lawyer, I helped trigger the Asian financial crisis. That wasn’t a highlight exactly but certainly a noteworthy moment.

As a writer of crime fiction for adults, I have tried to shine a bright light on the seedy side of Asian society while nervously looking over my shoulder for the authorities.

As a children’s writer, I’m hoping that there are kids out there who read my books and feel the way I did, as a kid, when a book spoke to me personally.

Where have your works been published?

I’ve been published all over the world including the US, UK and Australia as well as translated into numerous languages (my favourite being Serbian as my name on the cover is Shamini Flintova). Next up is Korean and Hebrew apparently.

What are you passionate about?

Football and the future although not necessarily the future of football.

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

I am incredibly passionate about helping children feel comfortable in their own skin having struggled to feel so myself.

As for adults, I am keen to share the curiosities and conundrums within Asian society and facilitate a better understanding of the region.

 

Testimonials

I invited Shamini Flint to attend our Festival in 2014 because of the quality and popularity of her books; however, I was immediately impressed by her ability to engage her student audience, both primary and secondary students, during her author sessions. With only a whiteboard and a microphone Shamini easily related to students, involving them in using their imaginations while also answering their questions about writing.In addition to her engaging presentation style, Shamini’s sessions were particularly notable because, as reflected in her books, she is able to provide students with a unique cross-cultural perspective.

The feedback we received regarding Shamini’s sessions was fabulous. As Programme Director for the Celebration of Literature I wouldn’t hesitate to invite her back to the Festival because we are guaranteed to receive significant booking numbers for her sessions. She is certainly a unique addition to any Festival author line-up. Importantly, we have complete confidence in Shamini’s ability to engage her student audience, regardless of the actual number of students or the diversity of age groups or backgrounds in front of her at any given time.

—K. Mackie, Somerset Celebration of Literature

Shamini Flint has been a frequent guest speaker at our College for the last seven years. We are a private international school, with 3000 students of over 40 nationalities.

In our Middle and High Schools, Grades 8 – 12, we have a robust creative writing programme and often during Writers Week we invite distinguished writers in our community to inspire and engage our students in the writing process.

Shamini Flint is our go to writer who we have discovered is not merely entertaining but evocative in her regaling of tales and experiences from her past as well as in the sharing of her unglamorous life as a writer. Shamini’s emphasis is always on originality, complexity and sophistication – the hallmarks of creativity. Often she will motivate students to find their own voice and use their own multi-cultural experiences to colour their work. That Shamini can reach such a wide range of nationalities and age groups in our College and raise our students’ cultural awareness speaks volumes for her and her craft. No matter what age group she speaks to, Shamini always endeavours to make what she says relevant to the students’ experiences.

We have used Shamini to inspire and engage our students in the creative writing process across the College. She has also been a frequent invited speaker to our annual launching of our High School Creative Writing magazine, where she has read her wide range of fiction that sparks wonder, intrigue and possibility.

—S. Binny, HS English Teacher, United World College of South East Asia

Shamini Flint has been a popular speaker at the Shanghai International Literary Festival children’s sessions, first in 2010 and again in 2014. She is a wonderful speaker, with a fine ear for what will engage and interest her audiences, but what really resonated with our very international audience (composed mostly of third-culture kids from around the world) was the cross-cultural content of her talks. Whether the audience is as international as ours or not, however Shamini brings a unique, and fresh perspective to any audience – and she’s just plain fun. The kids had a wonderful time – many who had seen her at school appearances in Shanghai insisted on seeing her again at the Literary Festival!

—T. Kanagaratnam Co-Director, Shanghai International Literary Festival & Capital Literary Festival Beijing

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