Farafina Book Review

So what are your plans for next weekend?

The Farafina book review can be one of your choices. On the 6th of November, 2010 at TerraKulture, they would be hosting Eghosa Imasuen, the author of To Saint Patrick. Ace journalist, Toyin Akinosho will be reviewing the book while Wana of 92.3 Inspiration FM would be moderating.

To Saint Patrick is a work of alternate history. Set in Benin City after elections, Hadiza and Ayo, police officers are investigating a murder. They soon find themselves embroiled in a set of larger and more dangerous intrigues that could cost them all they have worked for.

What to expect?1 Expect to be entertained as well as enlightened! Expect to receive writing tips from accomplished writers! Expect to discuss pertinent issues about African writing with intellectuals! Expect to win free copies of To Saint Patrick and buy your favourite Farafina titles at reduced prices! I bet you wouldn’t miss this! See you there!

*Event starts at 3pm at TerraKulture, Tiamiyu Savage, V/I on Saturday, November 6 and is free to attend.

Picture Weekend - Day of the Superhero

Hello people, how is everyone?

It's funny coming down the high of my birthday week, lol. Also, I did a lot of work this week and I was able to meet a major deadline for my next book. The manuscript is now almost ready for last line editing, yay! I want to do the Nanowrimo for my next project, for 2012. Hammer out 50,000 words first draft this November for a story with the working title of Meant for Each other. Cupid's Risk will be coming back soon, before the end of next month, once Ghost of the Past goes for final scrubbing. So right now, I am feeling like a Superhero.

Pictures taken at a volunteer event for the YMCA

Not a very cheerful Batman

Mrs. Incredible

Wonderwoman: who ever watched those series back in Nigeria?

A Police, I do consider them heroes too.

Mr. Incredible and Batman

The Fire Service; yeah they save lives too.

And Finally...

Wait for it...


No I'm not in the Police, just messing about at the Police Museum, lol...

Have a great one lovelies, and feel like a superhero.. MWAH

What have we done? - WIP

I decided to follow them into the bedroom. :)

Kevwe lost all his clothes on the way to the bedroom but Efe still had on her bra and panties when he pushed her down onto the cool sheets and covered her with his lean frame. His lips caught hers again in a kiss so deep, it swept away whatever remained of her senses. He stroked his tongue slow and deep into her mouth till she reciprocated. Before long she was aroused to fever pitch again. They broke apart, their breath ragged. His glittering eyes pierced her to the bed as his large hands moved to her hips.

Kevwe slowly and gently removed the scrap of lace that was her underwear, his eyes still holding hers. She lay still, though her long legs shifted restlessly against his as the red thong slid along them. He sat up and admired how she had matured. She was beautiful. Her dark long hair framed her heart-shaped face to perfection. Her half-open lips were like a cupid’s bow and her eyes were almost closed, lashes lying against her high cheekbones. He looked lower to the pouting globes of her breasts. The cups of her front clasp bra pushed their swell out to him. His hands moved to them and he flung the bra aside.

It became frenzied after that. They became a wild passionate tangle of naked arms and legs. Their hands and mouths searched for the nearest body part to touch and kiss and caress. Efe gave in the pleasure of it all – the feel of his fingers on her face, her breasts, her stomach, her thighs, between her legs. He touched her in places no one else had and in ways she could never had imagined. Her breathing turned choppy till she gasped for air and release. “Kevwe please…” she pleaded.

She clung to him, twisting and turning against the now rumpled sheets. He felt the wet of tears against her cheek but didn’t know if they were his or hers or if they were both crying. He’d never felt like this before, had thought this day would never come. Now it was here, he almost didn’t want it to end. He slid into her and had a short moment where he thought he would faint or come immediately. He paused to get his breath back and then began to move. She caught up with the rhythm and they were hurtling without stop.

Her release came first. He hung on to her with a moan and then let go. She came again with his orgasm and as her inner muscles worked on him, he collapsed against her. It had been a long time coming and his heart pumped in tune with his protracted release. When he came back to himself, she clung to him sobbing and kissing the hairs on his damp chest. He gathered her into his arms, stroking her hair behind her ears and whispering soft words. She stopped crying but remained by him as her breath gentled and evened out. Kevwe kept staring at the sleeping features till the arms of Morpheus enveloped him too.


When Efe woke, she fell into reality with a thud. The familiar nightmare had woken her and she wiped off the tears that stained her cheeks. Dawn was breaking outside her curtains but her heart was trapped in the darkness of the past. Kevwe lay beside her; they were both naked and on top of the duvet. He was going to leave her again, she knew it. She also knew who to blame for getting carried away. It wasn’t his fault for seducing her. He’d asked plainly and she’d walked into her destruction with open eyes.

He turned in his sleep and placed a heavy hand across her stomach. Efe flinched and jerked away. She felt clammy and quickly crawled under the cover of the duvet.

Kevwe woke up with the cool air from the air conditioner blowing against his skin. He shifted against the pillows with a groan but when he tried to join Efe under the duvet she moved away hugging it close to her breasts. He cracked open one eye and looked at her unwelcoming back. He stretched out a hand but she shrugged it off her shoulder.

“Don’t touch me.”

Kevwe sat up in confusion. After last night, a withdrawal was the last thing he expected. He turned her towards him peered into her face. “Is something wrong?”

“What have we done?” Efe whispered.

“What do you mean by that?” Kevwe frowned. He was beginning to feel cold and it wasn’t just physical. He knew he was not going to like what was about to happen and began to shore up his heart in preparation. He would not be caught unawares again.

“What have I done” Efe repeated this time to herself.

She felt ashamed. What had she been thinking? The problem was that she hadn’t been thinking at all last night. She had gone ahead to tumble straight into bed with him on the first day, even though they had so many things they had yet to clear up. There had certainly been an accident, his scars were enough proof. But when had it occurred? Before or after Ovie had seen him with another woman? What had really happened then?

“Excuse me,” Kevwe muttered. He needed to use the toilet and could see a door that looked as if it led to an en-suite. He got boldly out of the bed, but when he turned to look at her, his heart sank at what he saw. He felt he was being measured and found wanting. He became self-conscious and tried to camouflage his limp. In the toilet, he leaned against the wall and damned the fates who had chosen to curse him. When he got back to the room, Efe had dressed in jeans and a long sleeved sweater.

He picked his jeans which were on the floor near the door and stepped into them. He walked into the living room, picking up his clothes along the way. She followed with arms wrapped around her like a shield. There was no doubt about it, she regretted last night. So be it. He wished they had not made love first before thrashing out the thorny issues of their past. He sat on the settee where it had all started last night and put on his shirt silently. She took the chair opposite looking anywhere but at him.

“So let’s talk,” he said.


Have a nice weekend people. For those that celebrate Halloween, Enjoy! If you can get here, we've got the candy and some scares up our sleeves, lol...

Epilogue - Birthday Post

So it was brought to my knowledge that I have another birthday mate on Blogsville. And it is the amazing QMoney of DiscoverForWomen. I enjoy reading her blog and she has been supportive here too, reading and leaving very insightful comments and feedback. Thanks dearie and yeah I got your text.

To all those too that called or texted over the past couple of days, QMoney, Shorty, Azuka, Gretel, JustJoxy, MsNatural, Malika and Chris, thank you all so much. If you've not read AHTM, I'm happy to send you PDF copies, if I receive an email requesting for it.

To those who left Emails and Tweets, Facebook, etc. You made my day.

The first 10 people to comment on this post get free eBooks of Love Happens, the first part of AHTM. if you are, just send a request email to myne @mynewhitmandotcom

LadyGuide, let's see if you can get this, lol...BTW, we await the register...

I spent most of today at the salon, getting this hair done. Now I have a massive headache. But it's worth it and for a good cause. My birthday gift is a professional photo-shoot this weekend among other things.

My Birthday, Shoutout to my peeps...

No rushing now, the cake will get to everyone OK? :) *clearing throat*  Allow me first to do this special shout out to the following people;

Shorty - if you look at my left sidebar, you'll see that she's my #1 Feedback Star! For the year plus of this blog, she has been consistent, as shown in the top feedbackers list too. Also she's been going through some tough times lately, so you all can go to her blog and show some love.

2cute4u - What can I say? This lady is a human dynamo. She almost single-handedly launched Naija Stories through our first contest. I think I'm still owing her sef. You have a beautiful heart dear and it shows. Look forward to meeting you.

OmoteedLaw - When we say it's a small world, we usually don't know how true it is. This is one blogger I know I've seen, back in Abuja when I was a hustling bank marketer. I tried to sell her some financial products. She was one of the nice potentials, lol. Hi dearie, *waves*

Neefemi - My one and only blogsville birthday mate. Head over and share some of the good wishes. She is a soulmate too. From her blog, I think we're alike personality wise, she's also a talented writer, and with an ear for my type of music too.

Harry Itie - A hardworking used-to-be student, Harry is now a graduate and heading off to Zamfara for his youth service. He needs all the prayers and help he can get, and I wish him more blessings.

SugarKing - If it's not too strange that I should have a namesake on blogsville, then what about the fact that his twin is my dad's namesake? Interesting isn't it? Well I'm proud to call him sake m, the guy's lines are hilarious and he makes music too...

Nitty-Gritty - The unapologetic housewife, just like me, lol. This is one honest lady, and even when we have different views of stuff, I see the realness in her opinions. Keep it up sis.

Lahrah - There is nothing as an author, well for me anyway, that beats knowing that people are reading my book(s). So it was an early birthday present yesterday to read her last post. Go check it out and follow her blog. She also has another for supporting African talent. Kudos

If I continue listing everyone, this will be a very long post but I have to mention some people who have been uber supportive of me and my work; All the people who took part in the Cupid's Risk Series (a new one is coming soon BTW), all the people who still have my badges and links on their sidebars, especially Muyiwa Celebregion, Verastic, and LindaIkeji.

If I haven't called your name, despair not. I'm sure I'm following you and so your name will come up on my blogroll which I have put up again. If you're not on that list, simply follow me and leave a comment to let me know. For those that want to call, the number is _ The missing last number comes before 10, same number of digits as is currently there, and that will bring them up to 10. Confused yet? LOL...If you do get through, I'll know you're not a bot and you really really mean to call. And yeah, remember the US country code.


If you can't call, but you want to give me a gift. The best thing you can do is buy my book, I am running a promo from now till the end of the month. You can order directly from me through the Paypal on my sidebar. The price is now $11.99 or $14.99 for the autographed. The eBook is $3.99 as is the Amazon Kindle version too. You can also ask at your local bookstore or library, thanks in advance.

Finally, what do you think of my new template? Poll is on the left sidebar.

Happy Birthday to me...Let's cut the cake!

Picture Weekend - Alabama and Tennessee

I was going through my album recently and came across a set of pictures I had almost forgotten. These were taken in the summer of last year soon after I arrived in the States. We were visiting my brother-in-law and his family and I was meeting them for the first time. I had a great time, they were all so nice and I loved my new nephews and niece. You won't see pictures of me cos most photos that had me, also had someone else in it. So manage these ones OK?

Have a lovely week and remember my birthday is in just two days...

At a new shopping mall in Huntsville Alabama. It had some nice brand shops with a feel of Venice, I think it was modeled after the Vegas Hotel. I haven't been to Vegas though so I'm not sure. The children also had some fun

Going into Tennessee, with the Nashville skyline in the distance. It is known as the country music capital and is also the capital of Tennessee. The water there is the Cumberland River.

At the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center where we stayed, they had this amazing atrium with the cascades arranged in between greenery. This gave it a kind of rainforest look, and there was a rotating restaurant too, I loved it. 

My lovely sister-in-law took me for a girls night out on the General Jackson Showboat cruise. It was her birthday and we enjoyed fine dining and inspiring country music. Right, a view of the Cumberland River from the boat. This matched the view of the south US I'd gotten from books I've read in the past. Slow and peaceful. 

On the boat, before the show starts. We take in the view and the air.... Then, one of the shows, the band that entertained were really fantastic. And they played some familiar tunes too, including some of Shania Twain's greatest hits.

I can't remember the name of this mall, it was close to the Opry Mills though. There was an indoor aquarium, and play stations, my nephews were captivated. On our way back to Tennessee. There was traffic and it took us several hours more. I kept busy taking pictures...... and more pictures......and more... lol

Back in Alabama... funnily enough, this is the Tennessee River.

ps: I read that a blogger died. I didn't know him, but he was also a writer and it made me sad that he passed on so young. May his soul rest in peace and his family be comforted.

Is this what you want? - WIP

Now, don't go thinking this is the end. Some of you probably know that sex only complicates things, right? That's exactly what happens here. Read on...

“Efe, we need to forget the past.” Kevwe gripped her hand tighter. “You’re right about one thing, we were both hurt but we can overcome it.”

“Do you think that is possible?” Efe gazed at him as the walls around her heart crumbled. He was really serious? In counterpoint to her nightmares of their break-up was the dream that one day he would beg her to take him back. But not like this. She didn’t want to sweep the events of the past under the carpet. She would have jumped to her feet if the feel of his fingers kneading hers on her laps were not so distracting.

“I think I need to convince you,” he said suddenly, his eyes glowing. “Let me show you how much I’ve missed you,” he murmured.

Suggestively, his fingers stroked over her slender knuckles and along the length of her thigh. A rush of pleasure suffused her brain as he leaned towards her. His manly scent flooded her senses and her head swam. God, she wanted to melt into him. Her heart jumped within her as she remembered how it used to be between them.

They had been young, so much in love with each other. It had been special. They’d shared so much together, she had done everything he’d wanted. What was he was asking for now? Should she allow it? She’d missed him so much and maybe this would release her from the prison of the past.

She whispered his name like a plea and shifted toward him. He fit between her thighs like they were made for him. The loneliness that lay against her broken heart like a piece of hard ice thawed in that moment. Their lips met and clung. It started gently but in an instant the kiss became hot, and then turned hungry and desperate. The hurts of the past disappeared; the only thing that mattered in that moment was the heat of togetherness.

He pressed her back against the settee and lowered his body next to hers. She lifted her face again to his and her eyes looked back at him with a mixture of desire and passion. She caught the back of his head in her hands and pulled his mouth to hers. He was breathing heavily and came to her lips like a magnet. When he kissed her, they both shook as their tongues dueled. Efe had never experienced anything as exciting as Kevwe’s kiss; forgotten sensations swept over her as his lips continued to move on hers. Soon they parted for breath and he smiled at her.

“You’re so beautiful,” the soft whisper caressed her.

The lights in the apartment were dim and the hum of the air conditioner covered them like a blanket. She pushed his jacket aside and fumbled with the buttons of his shirt. Once she had the top three open she ran her open palm against the wiry hair on his chest, over his shoulder and down his muscular back. She loved the feel and taste of him. She loved the texture of his tongue playing with hers and the warmth of his skin against her hands. She loved him, period.

Kevwe groaned and lifted himself enough to fling off the jacket and pull his shirt out of the jeans. Her slim fingers skimmed the top of the trousers around the front tab and she felt his breath hitch in his chest. Her body quivered to his touch as he lowered himself. Her nipples were erect before he pulled the stretchy bodice of her dress down. She closed her eyes and savored the pressure of his lips on her and the way his tongue flicked sharp nicks of pleasure deep within her as they moved. Before long, his hands began to wander. They travelled over the curve of her belly to her hips. Efe moaned deeply and sat up, pressing him down onto his back. She pulled her hair loose from the bun it was still in and the weaves swirled around and down to her shoulders.

She leaned forward and let her hair cascade forward, slowly moving her head back and forth so the soft, silky strands slid over his chest. She moved onto him, kissed him passionately. Her tongue was soft and it made its way around his lips and inside his mouth, playing hide and seek with his. She bit him, small nips of pleasure, on his neck, ears and shoulders. He groaned deeply and she gave him a moment to recover. His hands were now moving everywhere over her, and wherever they touched, her body welcomed.

He held her ribs and eased her up over his head. His mouth found her nipples again and he circled his tongue around them. She arched her back and couldn’t stop murmuring his name over and over. He slid down her body, kissing his way down her torso. The cool air from the air-conditioner felt cold on her skin and she began to feel vulnerable. She pulled him back up and their lips meshed again. She pulled away after a while but only to run her fingers over the scars on his face. She caressed them like a prayer, and then rested her head on his shoulder. When she kissed the pulse throbbing near his ear, he whispered, “Is this what you want?”

Efe paused at his question. Was this what she really wanted? A part of her mind again warned caution but all parts of her body screamed in the affirmative. Want continued to unfurl in her belly and heat raced over her skin in waves.

She got to her feet, “Let’s go into the bedroom.”


Hope this was not too hot?

Have a nice weekend people and remember to have fun. MWAH!

Nigeria @ 50: The Golden Age - Day 20

Nigeria @ 50 Day 19 - Stuck in my Throat www.negesti4life.blogspot.com

So what are my thoughts and dreams as Nigeria clocks the golden age of 50?

I think of Nigeria as home. A home that has stuff scattered all over the place but still home. To understand the way Nigeria gets on my nerves, you have to know that I am something of a neat freak, I want things to be in their rightful place around me. I want things to work, and most times I don't mind pitching in to ensure that they do. In the case of Nigeria, it is sometimes so bad that one would be forgiven for thinking that all hope was lost. I don't buy that, never have and most probably never will.

Let me start from the beginning. I was born in Nigeria and grew up there. I did primary, secondary and first degree in Nigeria. I did not travel out of the country, even for visits, till I was over 25 years old. Some may say that this makes me blinded in a way to the faults of Nigeria. I agree but I do acknowledge that Nigeria has a long way to go. If I compare it to some of the more developed countries, I could even say we'll never get there. This is not true of course and one only has to look around to see that.

We were never rich, at best I'll class my family as lower middle class. We interacted widely and with all manner of people on a daily basis. As I grew up, I straddled that divide between the Ajebos and the Ajekpakos. I did not get to see just the good and at the same time, I did not see just the bad. I have noticed that in that middle, it is easier to come to terms with Nigeria. "ABroad" loses that appellation of escape it is to people at the different ends of the spectrum. The poor want to escape the squalor, and the elites want to escape the insecurity. Those that remain find crooked means to achieve a semblance of normalcy for themselves either by stealing (for the poor) or by corruption and patronage (for the elites)

I often blame the Nigerian people and not the political leaders for the way things are, and it is for this very reason. However, I also know that if there will be any changes, it will be from us, the people. I think at this time of the golden jubilee, it is time to ask ourselves questions individually. Is there something we're doing that we're not supposed to. And is there something we could do that we're not? In this way, we can begin to identify the problems and determine how we can be part of the solution.

I am not very political but I do believe in policy; building systems and structures that will outlast the politicians. And it is in this sphere that I have the biggest hope for Nigeria. One only has to look at the telecoms sector. It was started in the mid-nineties in the time of Abacha but continues to balloon. Several administrations have come and gone but the communications development marches on, creating more and more of that very important middle class. And as this group continues to increase, I believe we'll get to that critical mass required for an economic revolution.

I look forward to that time, and God willing, it is not too far now. Nigeria is in a state of flux and it is our actions that will decide the balance of probabilities. I may be out of the country but I want to be part of it. I also don't think anyone should be left behind, in fact, the more the merrier. So as we mark Nigeria @ 50, I do not think of what Nigeria can do for me but what I can do for Nigeria. I'm not doing it for GEJ or the NAS but for the people on the street, in the markets, churches, mosques, villages, and settlements. History will not forget me if I make a mark now, and I know opportunities like times such as these don't come around often.

So I dream of leaving footprints in the sands of time. The next 50 years will surely be better than the ones gone by.


Nigeria @ 50 Day 21 - NoLimit www.life-nolimit.blogspot.com

Debate Tuesday - Who makes these rules anyway?

What rules am I talking about you ask? Dating Rules of course. I was reading one of my favorite blog magazines, The Ladies Room, and they had asked some ladies how they fared on sticking to these rules. The question came to me immediately. Who makes these rules anyway? I am glad the ladies from the ladies room gave varied and interesting answers and did not always stick to how it was 'supposed' to be done.

The vexing thing is that these rules range from one end of the spectrum to the other so that if one is not careful, they end up running your life for you. There are guides on when and where to meet for the first date, what to talk about, what NOT to talk about, who should call the other first after the date, HOW - call, email, text - When to have the first kiss, When, IF, how, and where to have sex, When talk about each other, HOW to discuss any exes, when to meet friends or family, WHO pays for the first date, and so on and so on till infinity! OMG...I'm glad I bypassed all these rules and I'm very happy with how my relationship is turning out.

Anyway, I have collected some of the ones I found in various places, from Cosmo - that quintessential women's magazine, to Vogue, to Harper's, Sydney Herald, you name it. They are below. As you can see, many of them are contradictory to each other. It seems one columnist or editor wakes up one fine morning and cranks out the first ideas in his or her head and viola, Rules are born! For me, only the last one stands. However it stands, Whenever it ends, whatever happens in the middle, just have fun.

Feel free to tear into as many as you can.

Rule 1: The first date must always be lunch.
Rule 2: Always arrive with friends and always have somewhere to go
Rule 3: Don't sleep with him
Rule 4: Quit the texting
Rule 5: Make him prove that he'll take care of you
Rule 6: Rise above the guilt trip
Rule 7: Have multiple love interests
Rule 8: Have as much sex as you want
Rule 9: Ask men out
Rule 10: Don't tell your girlfriends
Rule 11: Don't assume you're the only one
Rule 12: Stick to texting
Rule 13: Stay clear of Facebook
Rule 14: Don't forget men have feelings too!
Rule 15: Diss men who make you mad
Rule 16: Never pay for the first date
Rule 17: Don't talk about the ex
Rule 18: Always pay your way
Rule 19: Have a code with girlfriend to end a bad date
Rule 20: Have fun


images courtesy of Google

Dolapo Babalola - My God even in the last minute

I got this book last week in the mail and I have finished reading it, it is that good. This is a Christian inspirational book and it one that will definitely encourage anyone who reads it. Dolapo presents a God who does not abandon us, a God who is always there even in the darkest time of night, and a God that will make our joy full in the morning. My God, even in the last minute is told from the prism of Dolapo's experience on the path of obtaining a US permanent residency. She dispenses encouraging bible verses and some information on the process of H1B documentation and eventual green card. It was also a fun read, tells an engaging story and is well written. Highly recommended. Read Dolapo's interview below.

1. Tell us about yourself?

I would like to introduce myself as Dolapo Babalola (Maiden name: Adeoshun) a debut author of a Christian Inspirational Book titled "My God: Even in the Last Minute" (MyGelm) released September 2010. I am also a family physician; and I practice clinical and academic medicine at Morehouse in the Department of Family Medicine, Atlanta. I am the oldest of four children, born in the mid-1970s to Dr. and Mrs. Adeoshun, who are both based in Nigeria. I obtained my medical degree from the University of Guyana, South America. After that, I completed an Internship at the University College Teaching Hospital in Ibadan, Nigeria. I migrated to the United States in the pursuit of higher learning. I subsequently graduated from Morehouse Family Medicine Residency Program and subsequently stayed on as a faculty member.

2. What made you write My God, even in the last minute?
I originally wrote my book to keep my mind focused on other activities, other than my challenges. I gradually matured through the process and had a keen appreciation of the omnipotence of God. Life is a journey; my experiences have shown me that it is a continuous learning curve. How we react to the situation is what makes the difference; I decided at this point to share my experience with the world by writing my book.

3. Talk to us about the writing process for My God, even in the last minute.
My writing process for MyGelm started out as a journal and gradually turned into an inspirational book for which I am grateful to God. I drifted out the outline of my book into four chapters with tentative titles at the latter part of last year but as I wrote the text, I realized there was more to tell on how God showed up in the most unexpected places. I ended adding two more chapters and finally finished writing my book in June, 2010. I spent a good amount of time researching the different reasons why God delays our responses to prayers. As a debut author, new in the publishing arena, I spent a lot of time making inquiries on the publishing industry; self-publishing, traditional publishing, editing, etc. To say the least, the process has been exhilarating.

4. What themes are explored in the book?
Several themes are explored in MyGelm. First and foremost, it narrates my journey as a young aspiring physician who, in the pursuit of a permanent residency in the United States, faced multiple obstacles and challenges. Each day through this ongoing ordeal, I experienced God in a way that I never would have imagined. Secondly, I mention the various circumstances that God showed up in the most unexpected place, in the last minute, and always with a life-changing lesson. Thirdly, I speak on how; the greatest lesson in my darkest hours of uncertainty is that God is close by, quietly working behind the scenes, bolstering my faith for a miracle. Last but not the least; in chapter 6, I discuss the pearls of life that I discovered during my startling journey that I believe will be educational for people to apply in their lives.

5. What's one thing you want readers to come away with having read My God, even in the last minute?
Great question! Peace of mind in any situation or life challenges. God’s plans, purposes, and pursuits can be expressed through our lives if we lay down our plans, purposes, and pursuits to him.

6. What was the publishing journey like; from idea to holding the book in your hands?
The joy and freedom to write and express myself, is what I enjoy the most about writing. What a phenomenal feeling it is to be able to put my thoughts down. Yes, there are downsides such as finding the time to complete my book, not to mention, the guilt trip, when I steal time from other activities. In addition, learning to write using the Chicago Manual literary Style was not easy, since up to date, I wrote mostly medical articles.
My goodness, holding my book in my hand was incredible but I must say it was with mixed feelings as well. I had doubts about acceptance. But I reminded myself that I am just the messenger, I will leave the rest to God.

7. What three writers have inspired you as a writer, and why?
So many but to mention three; Rev Tai Ikomi has influenced my life especially in her book titled “The Art of Inspirational writing. It is an amazing book! It teaches us to release ourselves to deliver the message indoctrinated. My life never remained the same after I read Mike Murdock’s book “The Uncommon Leader” I could read it over and over again; I just love the part that says we should focus on possibilities instead of problems. And lastly; Gifted Hands by Dr. Ben Carson. I remember reading this book in college with tears in my eyes, knowing that I can overcome any obstacle if I can only believe in myself. The message is clearly that “Champions keep playing until they get it right” words from Billie Jean King.

8. If you were on a stranded island and could only have three things, what would those things be, and why?

Interesting question…well, definitely my Everyday Life Bible which features notes and commentary by Joyce Meyer. I cannot do without my compact make-up bag, which by the way has all my necessities, including pictures of my hubby and children. A boom box to listen and dance to good music and if I may add a fourth thing, it would be my laptop! I joke with husband; saying I have palpitations without my laptop and internet access.

9. What is the most important part of a book for you--why?
There is a lesson learnt in every part of my mind but most importantly I would say my journey made me understand that God delays the response to our prayer requests for many reasons. I will mention one, which is to increase our vision. There were countless ways I could recite God’s magnificent powers revealed through the Word of God. I saw God come through for me during this journey in many unimaginable ways. When you go through thick and thin, you go from saying as the disciples did: “Who is this man?” to “You are the Son of God.” It is a place of having a vision of God’s power, his providence, and his parenting philosophy. You only know this in the midst of battle.

10. Are you currently working on another book?
No, no thought of any book, neither fiction nor non-fiction. But I have learnt “never to say never.” I will continue to enjoy writing medical literature.

11. What do you enjoy doing, like hobbies and other interests?
You can always find me being adventurous and challenging myself at new things. I enjoy spending time in church and with my family. It always relaxing for me to dance, write, listen to great music, and watch a cool movie.

12. Are you on Facebook, Twitter or have a website?
Yes, I am on facebook; www.facebook.com/584879119
My Website is www.mygelm.com
My blog is www.mygelm.wordpress.com

13. Where is My God, even in the last minute available?
In addition to my website; www.mygelm.com for purchase links, others are;
http://www.signedbytheauthor.com/1605.html (autographed)

14. Any last word to the readers?
Our disappointments and trials are no surprise to God. He knew every setback that would occur and had already arranged a comeback. You have someone fighting for you—the Creator of the universe is breathing in your direction. His hand of favor is upon your life. He is crossing ahead of you, making your crooked places straight. You can trust God for victory in your future and watch him show up in the most unexpected places.

Thank you for this marvelous opportunity to interview with you.

Picture Weekend - Love is in the air

Yeah, there's love in paradise except for these two gorillas at the top - you can see that they infected me with their dour demeanor in this first picture. But especially for the humans at the bottom - I think you'll recognize them. So apart from the first, all these pictures show there's love in the air and that's how I feel this lately. Have you told someone lately that you love them? I love you. Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

BTW, did you know that my birthday is in ten days? Countdown soon.

Steps to a successful relationship - full article

So this has been published on AfrikanGoddess and you can follow the conversation HERE

Be honest, be open, and be truthful: This is fairly straight forward but it can be a bit scary too. Some of us are not even totally truthful to ourselves so it can be difficult to expose ourselves to others. We’re also afraid that the other person may like us less when we put everything out there. This is a valid point; some people cannot take everything that is thrown at them. But for your own sake, you need to call their attention to it and maybe ask if they would like to know. Something that will help is not just talking about your perceived wrongs but how you feel about them and how you feel speaking about them.

Be reliable and show appreciation: This usually manifests as security which is imperative in a relationship, particularly for women but also for men in a different way. We all want to feel secure; we want to know we can come home to this person and have peace. When times are not too good and you’re about to hit rock bottom in your life it is important to know that somebody will be there for you. In as much as we expect this, we should also be willing, ready and able to give it. Do you keep to time, do you keep your promises, do you show you care, do you appreciate the other person in the many ways that it is possible to do so?

Trust each other: Believe me, it can be a very stressful relationship if you cannot trust your partner. This feeling of distrust usually stems from not knowing if he/she is open and honest with you. The worst thing you can do to yourself is try to bottle it up. It will eat you up from the inside. You have to let it out, ask questions, share your own feelings and then decide to trust them. There was a lot of furor earlier this year when it came out that Tiger Woods was cheating on his wife. I know a lot of people wondered if she had suspected anything. But seriously, when you’re in a serious relationship with someone, it is best to remove all suspicion from your mind. That is, unless you have incontrovertible proof.

Communicate, and communicate some more: It is impossible to over emphasize how important this is in a relationship. It is almost impossible to have a solid relationship if the two people involved are not able to open up and talk about the things that affect them. I was discussing a plot point in my manuscript with my SO and he said, “Remember sometimes in an argument, it stops being about how it started and turns to hidden hurts and buried misunderstandings.” That is so true, and the longer these things have been simmering in the minds of those involved, the more vitriolic the current quarrel will turn out to be.

I have noticed that a lot of time when a man disregards his home, or a woman nags the man, it is because they are harboring a grudge from an earlier incident and not necessarily because of the little things that will be their first answer if you ask them. A man might say, she doesn’t know how to cook, the woman will retort, he drops his stuff every which way, but when you probe deeper, there is usually something else.

The fact is that if they sat together and really talked about these issues, they can be resolved. Sometimes it may require an outside party if the grudge has eaten too deep but most times, good communication between just the couple will do. The things to bear in mind when communicating with your partner are; place, time and tone. Remember that communication is a two way thing; you have to listen and not just yak away or try to lay down the law. For instance, if money is tight and you do not appreciate your partner’s attitude to your choice of a designer bag, you do not start that particular conversation at the mall. Also, you cannot just say what's on your mind in a disrespectful manner and call it communication.

Respect each other: It all boils down to this. Respect is usually the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about. Any healthy relationship has to have mutual respect between the partners. This starts from the self first. We have to respect ourselves and in turn, attract respect from those around us. At the same time, we also have to learn to give respect. There’s the saying, familiarity breeds contempt. If not checked, this may become true. It is vital to watch our tones as we joke, tease and disagree with our partners, and especially in the presence of other people. It is fine to disagree but you have to respect each other’s opinions. Agree to disagree.

You will notice that I dwelt a bit more on communication than others. That is because, I personally think it is the key that holds all the others together. I believe that if we can put most of these approaches into practice, we’ll have less stressful and more successful relationships. They will also help in other interpersonal relationships with friends, family and even colleagues at work. 

ps how do you like the picture? :) Courtesy: AfrikanGoddess.com

We were the perfect soulmates - WIP

Efe returned to the office quivering all over. It was just after five and though it was too early for her to leave, she knew she couldn’t do any more sensible work that day. Her shift for tonight was to have run till ten but she took permission from the manager, packed up her bag and left the office immediately. Thank God for all the times she’d worked late, he usually frowned seriously on staff leaving before time.

At home, she sat on one of the dining-room chairs staring with unseeing eyes at the plate of rice she’d just heated up in the microwave. Her mind was far away and when the phone rang, she was brought back with a jolt. She was disoriented at first and didn’t know whether it had been the doorbell or the phone. When it rang again, she picked up the handset, her hand shaking uncontrollably.

“Who is it?” she asked, her voice hoarse.

“It’s me, we have to talk,” his was the same deep baritone.

Efe closed her eyes and took a deep breath; it wasn’t as if she had not been expecting it. She had actually been hoping he would call. She exhaled as her lids blinked several times to stop the threatening tears.

“Where are you?” Kevwe continued. “Are you still at work?”

“I’m at home now.” Efe knew she could choose to act unaffected but decided to be more open and vulnerable. “I couldn’t remain in the office after our earlier meeting.”

Kevwe apologized immediately. “I’m sorry I spoilt your day,”he said, “I knew we would be meeting today but I didn’t stop to think how it would affect you.”

“It hasn’t been easy. I thought I was only going to see your brother.” Efe recalled the past hours, “It didn’t help too how you tried to jump down my throat in the car park. I was only telling you the truth.”

“I am very sorry, believe me, and I want to hear more of your version of the events of seven years ago.”

Efe didn’t argue but gave him her address. He said to expect him within the hour and dropped the phone. She saved his number to her contact list and then changed out of her work clothes into a long colorful sundress with small cap sleeves. Finally she washed her face, put on some fresh make-up and tidied up the apartment. That kept her hands busy as thoughts swirled in her mind.

The doorbell rang soon after and she went to open it. As Kevwe walked over the threshold and into the living-room, she was struck again how much it seemed like time had not passed and yet so many things were very different. She felt his eyes on her, and turned away.

“You look beautiful Efe. I didn’t say that back at the hospital, an oversight.” He said from behind her, “The years have been kind to you.”

She merely smiled and gestured towards the armchair, as she rested gingerly against the back of her teal settee. He ignored the armchair and joined her on the settee. He continued studying her but she looked away. She wasn’t being coy but sitting beside him, being alone with him in the small confines of the air-conditioned flat, was a situation she had never imagined when she’d woken up that morning. As if reading her mind about getting used to each other again, he too leaned back against his chair in silence.

“Can I get you something?” She broke the quiet with the neutral question and shifted forward as if ready to stand.

The question struck him with a strong sense of déjà vu. Kevwe shook his head. How many times had she asked him that while they were back in university? Especially on those days he would come to visit her in the hostel in the early days.

Efe told herself not to notice how fantastic he looked but it was too late. He was still dressed in the lightweight suit and jeans he’s been wearing earlier and they fit him to a tee. Rather than detract from his looks, the scars on his handsome face made him more dashing especially when added to the moustache that dusted his upper lip. Those same good looks had made her the envy of a lot of girls in UNIBEN. But he didn’t belong to her anymore, had not for the past seven years. She should fight this attraction to him, after all he’d cast her away.

In a sudden move, he was kneeling before her. Kevwe gripped her wrist and stared into her eyes. “I really loved you back in Benin; at least you can’t deny that. I was heartbroken the way things turned out. I missed you every day we were apart. I thought I’d overcome it all, but then I saw you again. One glimpse of you and you had me on my knees again. Blame that for the incident in the car park…”

She withdrew her fingers from his grip. “So what do you suggest, I just jump back into your arms again, no questions asked, not minding how we’d broken up?”

“I’m willing to woo you all over again,” he told her in a deep whisper. “We were the perfect soul mates, Efe. University sweethearts, the best couple…we had it all. You were the first and only woman I ever loved or saw as the mother of my children. I just know that it will come naturally if you just let it…”

“Kevwe, you don’t know how much you hurt me,” she said it before her mind finished processing her thoughts. Damn, she’d warned herself not to expose that to him. In the few hours since seeing him again, she’d sworn not to say anything to get his pity. That was not what she wanted.

“We’ll get over this,” he told her firmly. “Many years may have passed, but they don’t change how I feel about you.”

He covered her hand with his again and this time he inter-twined their fingers right there on her thighs. There was no pity in his gaze or in the feel of his hand on hers. But Efe would not be so easily swayed.

“What are you saying?” she asked. “That we should just overlook what happened like it never did?”

Tuesday Talk - To be a Changemaker or not

Where, precisely, do you go in order to get permission to make a dent in the universe?
The accepted state is to be a cog. The preferred career is to follow the well-worn path, to read the instructions, to do what we're told. It's safer that way. Less responsibility. More people to blame.
When someone comes along and says, "not me, I'm going down a different path," we flinch. We're not organized to encourage and celebrate the unproven striver. It's safer to tear them down (with their best interests at heart, of course). Better, we think, to let them down easy, to encourage them to take a safer path, to be realistic, to hear it from us rather than the marketplace.

In the post titled "Do you need a permit?" acclaimed blogger Seth Godin asked why most of us are more comfortable doing follow-follow or words to that effect. More worrying is the other side. Where people feel comfortable destroying a persons ideas or rubbishing their actions just because they think it's for the person's good. This person just wants to be the change they would like to see in this world and others, not just too scared to step out of their comfort zone, are also scared of change.

To be honest, it takes a lot of guts to stand in the face of such attitude not to talk of continue on that unbeaten path you've chosen for yourself. In some Nigerian circles, it is called the Pull-Him-Down Syndrome or PHD usually going hand in hand with Herd Mentality. So what Seth Godin is saying is not new but I think it is worth repeating. People who want to blaze a trail need to be encouraged because sometimes, it is impossible to be a changemaker unless you have a few good people around you. People who will cheer you on and not try to hold you back. People who will jump in and offer help and support.

So question to you. Have you been a changemaker before, seen someone try? How much support did you receive, and what opposition. Are you still on course with that vision?

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 ~

Picture Weekend - Vancouver on my mind

Will I ever forget vancouver? We had such a great time there last month that I don't think so. It's a lovely city, not too big and not too small, perfect for a small-town girl like me. In a way, it actually reminded me a Seattle, both on the West Coast, similar weather and they love their coffee too. Except Vancouver had a marvelous vista of mountains surrounding it almost on all sides, and is more diverse too. The native Indian population is more visible and there are also loads of Asians, I hear Richmond is almost 75% Chinese.

There was also a vibrant social life, with a thriving fashion high street that reminded me of the UK. I don't think we have that in Seattle. We visited several landmarks in Vancouver including Chinatown, Stanley Park, MetroTown, Granville Island, and the Top of Vancouver revolving restaurant. The last felt a lot like the restaurant at the top of the Space Needle in Seattle where we went for my birthday dinner last year. We had a great experience this time as well. I'll stop running my mouth now and allow you to enjoy the pics.

Welcome to Vancouver BC, Canada. It was raining cats and dogs as you can see. 

Passing through the border control, it was quick and easy.

A random bull on the street near our hotel. Vancouver's answer to the Wall Street Bull? You decide.

Walking around downtown, the top of Vancouver restaurant building in the distance.

Holy Rosary cathedral

A mid-lake fountain in the lost lagoon at Stanley Park, had the ducks as the captive audience

The aboriginal tour guide, people who're originally from the area.

Lord Stanley himself, once governor-general of Canada. The park is named after him.

A view of the bay and the opposite shore from the tour bus

One of the hundred of years old trees in the park.

Lions Gate Bridge

Beautiful view eh? Can you see the sea-wall? One of the major attractions

One of the local Indian exhibitions, they have very intriguing artwork, I was tempted to get some

After the raven dance, our story teller and his young accomplice agreed to take pics

At the aquarium on the grounds. They have a massive collection, but nothing as scary, :)

A friend took us to see this arty side of Vancouver. 

There was this Chef school and these lovely cakes tempted me through the windows

The quay from Granville Island, Downtown in the distance. Those high risers must have a lovely view.

In a sporting goods store, maybe we're going camping next? Only Atala knows.

Of course we gravitated to the bookstore. Chapters at Metrotown

In the center atrium of the mall. I just replenished my MAC collection and was happy

The steam grandfather clock in Gastown

Vancouver on my mind and before me. At the international center off Chinatown. Thanks for joining me.