Out of Curiosity - Nwabundo Onyeabo (Guest Author)

Tell us about yourself, a brief autobiography.
My name is Nwabundo Nneka Onyeabo aka Oluwapamilerinayo. I hold a BSc in Public Relations and an MBA in Marketing & Finance from Morgan State University. Some of my poems have appeared in the Sable Quill Magazine and a number of websites.

When and why did you begin writing?
I've been writing since I could hold a pen; perhaps around five years old. I started writing at first just because it was an awesome avenue to express myself and relieve my active mind from all its imaginations - it was not intentional like "today i want to express myself therefore i will write" it was more "ooh here's a paper and a pen! scribble time!" I would write stories, and draw all over my notebooks and with time I realized that there's so much power in the ability to express yourself with written words...

What inspires you to write?
I like to say - everything. I can start a poem or story because of something someone said, something I read, something that resonates with the things I am passionate about. Some of those things are love, nigeria, education, chocolate, family, friendships and food.

What was your publishing journey like, from thinking of the book idea to holding it in your hands.
It was very interesting. I decided to publish a collection of poems three years ago as a 21st birthday / graduation present to myself... i didn't quite get to it that year. My manuscript was accepted by an American publishing company in Summer 2008, but i decided to self publish in 2010 to get a feel of the publishing processes in Nigeria. I'm blessed with the favor and open doors i experienced and also extremely grateful for the bottlenecks because these experiences teach you valuable lessons... lets just say i can now give very good publishing advice :)

Why poems? Do you plan to write prose too?
Poetry is almost like second nature... I write prose also but poems flow through me when i'm inspired. I literally have to find somewhere to put it down, its like being pressed to pee. Once those words are written, typed, or recorded immediately my mind produced them; i can commence tweaking... Prose comes with a hard pressed mind boggling issue with the same urgency but a reduced flow.

Do you have a major theme that runs through Out of Curiosity?
- There are a couple of themes that run through. There's love, issues of life, soujourns (that is places and journeys), and lessons i have learned.

What books have most influenced your life?
- Hmmmmm.... All Enid Blyton books i ever read (Famous Five, and etc), Alex Haley's "Roots", Ben Okri's "Famished Road", Chinua Achebe's "Things Fall Apart", Longer at Ease" and "Arrow of God", Ted Dekker's "Three", and "Obsessed", Frank Peretti's "This Present Darkness"... there's quite a lot o

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
- Prose: Dr. Chinua Achebe; Plays: Barr. Wole Oguntokun; Poetry: Prof. Wole Soyinka, Victor Okigbo

What books are you reading now?
C.S Lewis "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader"

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
- Right now its Chris Abani, Biyi Bandele, Chika Unigwe, Chimamanda Adichie and Sefi Atta

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
- Writing to convey in the most surreptitious yet descriptive way what i'm feeling. I only experience this with poems though.

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
- I would have to say Frank Peretti. His writing is totally awesome! Its deep yet understandable and very very spiritual, uplifting and educative. I love love love his work! I'm a huge fan of Ted Dekker as well.... I also love all things by Flora Nwapa, Elechi Amadi and Ngugi Wa thiongo.

What do you think of the Nigerian publishing industry?
- Its thriving! I'm really glad how much we're coming up; from the days of Flora Nwapa's Tana Press till now, I must say we're not doing too badly - we must keep it up!

What comments do you have about the reading culture in the country?
- Ah, it definitely needs to improve. I cannot stress enough how important reading is to human survival. If you think about it critically, its at the root of receiving information. If we don't read, we CANNOT know and that's a fact. I don't think Nigerian youth and children espeacially are reading enough, this needs to change.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
- Firstly, Happy Independence Day Nigeria! Stay Reading! Love your neighbour as yourself and if you haven't bought "Out of Curiosity" hmmmm, lets just say you're NOT my reader! **folds arms and turns nose up in the air** so go buy "Out of Curiosity" :)

Do you have an online presence, Facebook, Blog, Twitter or a website?
- I am on facebook as Nwabundo Onyeabo, there's also a twitter page for my book ~ outofcuriozity

Where can we buy the book, both in stores and online?
- "Out of Curiosity" is available at the Hub Media Stores, Palms Lekki in Lagos Nigeria; it is also available on amazon.com ~
http://www.amazon.com/Out-Curiosity-Collection-Poems/dp/9789083459/ref=sr_1_15?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1285085673&sr=8-15

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