In April, Mike Maphoto, a lawyer from Polokwane, started a blog, Diary of a Zulu Girl, as a joke to trick his name-dropping friend into pretending to know one of the people mentioned on the blog. The prank worked and the blog took off, getting over a million hits in the first three weeks. It has now received 33 million hits and gets 45 thousand readers per day on average, according to Maphoto.
The fictional blog is about the 19 year old Thandeka Mkhize who leaves her small town in Mooi River to study law at Wits University. The diary details her experiences in the big city, where she is introduced to older men who buy her drinks and expensive clothes. Jeanette Chabalala from City Press spoke to Maphoto about the success of his blog, which he is self-publishing as a book and is filming as a TV drama after turning down an offer from the SABC and receiving R9 million from an independent record company to create the show.
Mike Maphoto has been changing the game since April. Jeanette Chabalala catches up with him about his growing empire.
It all started out as a joke, but this year Mike Maphoto has moved from being a casual blogger to a published author, TV series creator and director.
The creative behind the popular Diary of a Zulu Girl blog has made giant leaps across the media with the blog morphing into a book and a TV drama.
Last month, Maphoto gave a talk on his project at TEDxSoweto, saying that his second highest readership is based in England and he thinks that this is because of the universal nature of the experiences his character has:
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Image courtesy City Press