A Love Rekindled Launches with Nollywood Cast Book Trailer!

So we begin the debut of A Love Rekindled with the book trailer which features a Nollywood Cast. Check it out below, and please share. The video was made in collaboration with E4PR, a management company for the stars, who agreed for me to use their pictures. They will also be promoting the video and book launch, and we're all looking forward to A Love Rekindled on the screen.

Book Blurb

Efe finds true love with Kevwe, and promises to marry him. Their dreams unravel when Efe wins an American Visa, and fresh violence erupts between their warring ethnic groups. Efe leaves for the States nursing a broken heart. Now, Efe is back in Nigeria, and sparks fly when they meet again. But renewed desire is no match for bitter memories of heartbreak. Can they overcome the traumatic past and rekindle their love?




The book can currently be bought at the following outlets. I'll be grateful if as many people as possible buy this weekend so as to give it some push, especially on Amazon. The eBook is $2.99 and the book is $11.99.

AMAZON PAPERBACK - A Love Rekindled

AMAZON KINDLE - A Love Rekindled


CREATESPACE - https://www.createspace.com/3499780 Book Launch Discount Code 5% off (5YPZ5L8Y)

SMASHWORDS - http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/48781

B&N NOOK - http://search.barnesandnoble.com/A-Love-Rekindled/Myne-Whitman/e/2940012394538

Thank you all so much!

Book Twitter Party.


To celebrate the release of my second novel, A Love Rekindled, there'll be a virtual party on Twitter on Saturday, April 2, 2011 at 10am Pacific Time, 1pm Eastern Time, and 6pm UK and Nigeria Time. Hostesses are Michelle @BombChellATL, Eva @ EvaAlordia, and @Verastic.

What is a Twitter Party, and how does one take part?

A Twitter Party is a great way to have fun, make new followers, and this time you can win prizes too.
During the A Love Rekindled Twitter Party we will be discussing ways to rekindled love, creative ways to apologise, and how to set your love on fire!
Join the party by searching for the hashtag #torekindlelove and #ALRbook and adding both to your tweets that fit the discussion.
You can also retweet other people's tweets if they are part of the party.

To win prizes, all you have to do is participate! It’s that simple. The party will last for two hours, and my winners will be selected every thirty minutes. I say my winners cos there are others taking part in the party, with their own prices to give away. From me, you could win…

1. An Amazon gift card of $10 from Amazon.com (must live in the US)
2. A discount coupon for 30% to buy ALR from the Createspace eStore.
3. A discount coupon for 20% to buy ALR from the Createspace eStore.
4. A discount coupon for 10% to buy ALR from the Createspace eStore.

Finally ...

The Party will be featuring guest appearances by Nollywood stars under the management of E4PR, so before the A Love Rekindled Twitter Party starts, make sure you are following at least two of the peeps below. They'll be selecting the winners and by following, you ensure you can get a DM notifying you if you win any of the prizes.

Myne @Myne_Whitman

Egor Efiok @E4PR

Chioma Chukwuka @omakpotha

Monalisa Chinda @monalisacode

Susan Peters @realsusanpeters

Desmond Elliot @deselliot

Igoni Archibong @IgoniArchibong



Extra Entries

Tweet about the A Love Rekindled Twitter Party using "Join @Myne_Whitman for the A Love Rekindled Twitter Party April 2 at 1pm EST  #ALRbook

Tweet about the prize you want to win at the A Love Rekindled Twitter Party using "I’m going to win free copies of A Love Rekindled at the Twitter party #ALRbook

Lost and Found BlogFest - Update



A reminder for those taking part in the BlogFest...


"From March 25 - 31, post a blog telling me about anything you've ever lost and found, an object, a person, an idea, anything! The same week, visit two other blogs in the list, read their entries, and leave comments. I will be visiting everybody."

The theme of Lost and Found for the blogfest ties in to the launch of my second book, A Love Rekindled. ALR is a love story of college sweethearts, who lost each other due to circumstances out of their control. When they found each other again after a decade, love is rekindled.

So have you posted your story? Leave a comment here with the link and I'll get to it as soon as I can. I have read some lovely stories, and look forward to more

On April 3, I'll announce all the winners of the blogfest and giveaway!

You can read the stories, and find some great bloggers by checking out some links below. Thanks!

Binyerem Ukonu - The Water was Hot (Guest Author)

Binyerem Ukonu of Ink Upon my Paper is my guest author for today, and he'll be telling us about his debut short story collection, The Water was Hot, in the interview that follows. You have to pick up his book, I provided part of the blurb and it is truly an engaging read.

Tell us about yourself, a brief autobiography.

My name is Binyerem Ukonu. I first became a writer before I was called to learn how to design houses for both family living and office purposes. That is to say that I’m an architect. I am the only son of my parents, although my mum is late. I have five sisters, and all of them are older than I am. So, I have always had anything I’ve always wanted, and also people to fight for me out there, both in prayers and combat (laughs). Now, I am an author of two books – a collection of poems titled Ekwurekwu (a meal of verse), and The Water was Hot, which is a collection of short stories published in Delhi by Serene Woods. I was born in 1982.

When and why did you begin writing?

I’ve always loved poems and the art of writing poetry. I always felt poets drew strength from a deity somewhere. How else could they have written those beautiful lines? I became a poet in 2002, when I lost my mother – Lady Georgy Ukonu. It was when we went into her bedroom to gather her belongings together that I found her chapbook of poetry. This is where she wrote either her poems or poems of other poets. I read from one line to the other, and felt the words taking over my head. That was how I became a poet. Then, I wrote for myself, and never wanted anyone to read my works, for the fear of criticism. A friend of mine, one day, stumbled upon a poem of mine that was carelessly kept. He read it, stole a few lines, and went to win himself a girlfriend with it. I had confidence in my works when I heard that from him. I’ve written a lot of poems, and many of them are online presently. My short stories, too, are gaining audience.

What inspires you to write?

(Laughs). This is one question I’ve always prayed not to encounter, because I’ve always heard or read other authors answer this same question. It’s scary. But I must say this. I’m inspired by chaos. And someone I told this, recently, told me to relocate to Sudan, where chaos is like street lights. But sadness inspires me most times. I am also inspired by the environment and the happy people in it. Most of my friends are becoming careful with me these days. They do not want to play a role in my stories. This makes me laugh. So, you can say that I’m a bit complex.


Discuss one of the stories in your book.

The Water was Hot, the theme story, is about a woman who fights through life with cancer, and gains strength from the love and unity that envelopes her family. A few times, people rumored she was dead, because no one saw her for a long period of time. One thing I most enjoyed while writing this story was how fast I was with it. It felt like I was writing a story that someone had already written before. I felt I was doing the right thing. And I cried most of the time. I felt fulfilled, knowing I had gotten to the end. Today, I read those lines, and they are like reading a story written by someone else. The main character became a person. A voice.



Why short stories? Do you plan to write a novel too?

Yes. Short stories because I love telling stories. And most times, I would jump from one incidence to another while telling someone what happened at a certain time. I would have told you about five stories, trying to tell you just a story. So, you can say I’m a raconteur of a sort. I gossip too. (laughs). I don’t gossip a lot. I do it once in a while. Bonny Island became my muse, and I wrote a lot of stories set on the island. The Water was Hot was inspired by many things. There is no actual theme. Here is a prostitute who actually thinks she has no better option for survival. She is also smart, and makes use of her smartness. In Mayhem, young wealthy men run away from town, because the mob just lost trust in their source of wealth. And a young engineer wishes he gave a helping hand. The theme story, The Water was Hot, is almost a true tale, excerpt it has one or two additions to it. But it is the story of a family’s battle with their mother’s sickness, which was cancer. My mother died of cancer too. Will I write a novel? Yes I will. I’m already on it, and it’s about the military in Zaria. I’ve been researching for two years now. It’s a serious novel. I will not say much about it now.

Do you have a major theme that runs through all the stories?

Not exactly. Like I said, it’s random.

What was your publishing journey like, from thinking of the book idea to holding it in your hands.


This is the most frustrating part of writing. You want your book to go out there. You want it to do well, and win awards, but no one to help you put it out. So, everyone sees you as that writer that would eventually never get published. Most publishers returned my manuscripts, and either told me that I had good stories, but they were not in the state to publish me, or they would just tell me that my book was just not good enough. One funny thing with publishers is that at the end of those rejection letters, they will always advise you on trying another publisher. Is that not funny? But you can not really blame them. And the case with publishing in Nigeria became even worse. I met Onyeka Nwelue, and we became friends. We compared each others works, and believed in what we did. At that time, his book had already been published in Nigeria, and he needed to create the awareness in India. My manuscript was ready at that time. We had always dreamed to be in the same publishing company, and that was what happened. Coincidentally, Serene Woods received our manuscripts and loved them. They wanted to publish our books at the same time. This new book of mine took me two years to find a publisher.


What books have most influenced your life most?

Many of them, but mostly those written by Nigerian Authors. Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart still remains a classic. Chimamanda Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun is one big book that I read four times before I dropped it. Then, there are authors like Chika Unigwe, Sefi Atta, and Uche Umez. But what books have really influenced me? I think Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Year of Solitude.

If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?

Chika Unigwe

What books are you reading now?

Onyeka Nwelue’s finished manuscript. It is such a fantastic book. It would eventually be titled Orchard of Memories, I guess. He already has a publisher for that.

Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?

Ofor Aluka has. He is the poet that wrote Trickles of a Time. He lives in Gabon, but he’s Nigerian. His mastery over words is outstanding. He also has that unique style. He is also a story teller. I think he’s almost through with his collection.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

Of course! And that would be that connection with my characters. I do not allow a closer relationship with a certain character than others. I try to relate with them, evenly. And that is hardwork. Sometimes, I drop my pen or hibernate, go outside to a pub to have a bottle of beer. Then I come back to watch the screen again. I can not say that I have a problem with choice of words, because my words are usually simply. They are the words of everyday people.

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

Sincerely, I do not have any special author. Maybe, before I used to have, but now that I know and have many of the as friends, it’s difficult to say. But I think Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani is good.

What do you think of the Nigerian publishing industry?

Like our today’s Nollywood, we’ll one day grow.

What comments do you have about the reading culture in the country?

I think it’s poor, and needs to improve. Books nurture the human mind and set you in the right path. Do you know that it is possible to successfully live a very good life that you saw in a character from a book? There are signs that things will improve. I love what 19 year old Iyinolwa Aboyeji is doing with online education. People are getting to know more about books, and more author are emanating from all corners. This is a good sign.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

All I can say is that they should keep reading me. I need to always draw strength from their words. I need to be inspired by them. They have been there for me all the while. They need to take this beautiful journey with me.

Do you have an online presence, Facebook, Blog, Twitter or a website?

Yes, I do. I am presently the editor of http://www.africiwrite.blogspot.com, where I write, and also publish stories and articles from African writers. You can find me on twitter at http://twitter.com/twwh. Then, on Facebook, you can find me at http://www.facebook.com/Inkflows.


Where can we buy the book, both in stores and online?

Presently, it’s in bookstores in Delhi, and all India. In India, they can also order online from Flipkart (http://www.flipkart.com/water-hot-binyerem-ukonu-book-9380112343). Recently, Serene Woods has made it possible for readers to order online from anywhere they are. All you need to do is just to register with their web store, and order for the book, THE WATER WAS HOT (http://serenewoods.com/book_details.php?id=465). It’ll soon be on amazon. Although, we’re working hard to bring it to our Nigerian readers through local bookstores, we also encourage you to order online if you can.

Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Reviews

So these were the reviews I got from the Amazon experts. I was a little demoralized when I checked the Quaterfinals List and my name was missing, you know how your heart is beating so fast and then it sinks to the bottom of your tummy? Anyway, I logged in to the back end, and the reviews made me feel somewhat better. The reviewers read the first 5000 words, which in the MS was the first 2 chapters, and it's heartening to read that they liked it, and saw potential.

1. ABNA Expert Reviewer

What is the strongest aspect of this excerpt?

The setting in Nigeria is the strongest aspect of this setting. Though several of the characters have spent time or are connected somehow to other regions, they all seem to be drawn back to Nigeria. I have heard of few books that are set in this country, and I'm willing to bet not many of those are romances. I feel that if this story explores Nigerian culture and history, the setting will prove a great asset.

What aspect needs the most work?

I don't read many romances in general, so I found the main romantic relationship hard to follow, especially because it was in the past. I could tell that there was a strong relationship at some point, especially since the couple had been engaged, but not many details are provided otherwise. Though these may be revealed later on, I would have liked to know them somewhat earlier on to get a better grasp of where the story is going.

What is your overall opinion of this excerpt?

I think this excerpt is as a whole pretty well done, even if the only large aspect that stands out to me is merely the setting. So far the characters are interesting and unique, and although I found it difficult to follow the history of the main romantic relationship, I did find myself wanting to know more about it and where it could possibly go. This story seems to have a lot of potential to confront some important issues; of course, this early on, I am unable to judge how well this is done, if at all.


2. ABNA Expert Reviewer


What is the strongest aspect of this excerpt?

In this piece, I sense that many roadblocks to a relationship are going to be tackled...the strongest of which appears to be pride. According to each of the main characters, Efe and Kevwe, each was the victim of a breakup - which could prove to be interesting as the reader is given further detail on what actually happened. As the reader and the two characters sort that out, this could prove to create a high level of dramatic and romantic tension.

What aspect needs the most work?

As the story jumps around in time, and as conflicting information is given by each of the main characters as to what happened in the past, the reader spends much time trying to keep track of events, people, places and years.

The prose has an awkward flow. There are sentences that are too heavy with descriptive words, "Would definitely have taken a toll on her purse, and it would have been completely impossible to live there. The city was definitely not cheap and she frequently found..." - that's a LOT of adverbs. Or, "Efe flicked her nose (?) and cursed under her breath. First the stumbling, now she was mumbling." Why would she flick her nose and then there is the sound repetition. Or, "This last statement was made with the air of someone who’d just had his request handed over on a platter of gold." That just doesn't flow well - a professor had just announced he was leaving - he hadn't made any request.

As this story takes place in countries and cultures that may be unfamiliar to many readers, the prose needs to be clear and easy to understand so the reader has a foundation on which to grasp and understand new terms or customs.

What is your overall opinion of this excerpt?

I am curious about the character of Efe - she seems to be a young woman who has made different choices than her family might have expected. I would like to understand why she thinks Kevwe broke up with her and why he thinks the same of her - which is probably the basis for this rekindled romance.

These two characters seem interesting and the details the reader is gradually getting about them should make for a well paced romantic novel.

______________

PS, so it was great being part of ABNA, and taking on board their comments, I'll work on another MS towards next year's contest. Meanwhile the MS with the above reviews was further professionally edited, and has now been published as A Love Rekindled. You can buy it on Amazon.com. And you can sign on to help me publicize the book launch from March 31 - April 3 HERE




Paint it Purple - Obudu Cattle Ranch

The earth soared up on both sides of the narrow, winding road and the car slowed down so that we could take in the impressive view. The trees were tall and majestic, covering the mountains for as far as the eyes could see. We soon got to the sharpest bend in the track which was signposted as the Devil’s Elbow and slowed even further. As the summit approached, the terrain became more of rolling hills with swaying shrubs and grass waving in the wind. By the time we got almost to the top, we had sighted a couple of small animals and several different kinds of birds.

That evening as we dined on the balcony of the restaurant, I witnessed one of the most impressive spectacles of my outdoor experience. The sun went down and the horizon became obscured by a stately and continuous movement of the sky. The clouds descended in a swirling mass of vapor that heralded the beginning of a curious twilight. The valley became filled with this splendid mass and to us watching, it was as if the heavens touched the earth.


This blogfest is courtesy of Erin Kane Spock of Courtly Romance. The premise: For those who saw this earlier without the post, I apologize, blame it on bad timing, and the scheduler's imp. I wrote my entry sometime ago for a writing exercise on Nature. It is about a wonderful place we had been to, Obudu Cattle Ranch, where we went for our honeymoon. At the end, I decided this style of writing is not really me. What do you think?

Some Pictures of Obudu Cattle Ranch from the Web.





A couple of our pics.



Book Launch! March 31 - April 3!

Hello everyone, I need your help and support.

My new book, A Love Rekindled is launching from Thursday March 31st to Sunday April the 3rd. I'll be grateful if you can sign up below to take part in the month-long book premiere. There will be the official release of the book trailer video, a real-time online chat on my blog, where you can ask me anything, a Twitter Party, a Facebook discussion, casting call for the main characters, and many more. I can only do all these if you can offer me the use of your blogs, Facebook or Twitter. The blog tour continues afterwards too. Please help me spread the word.

Advance review from Lara Daniels, author of Love at Dawn - A recommended "Spring" Read

It was a novel that I enjoyed tremendously. As a sucker for poignant romances with premises of new beginnings, I found A Love Rekindled right up my alley. The theme of a love, once lost, then found again, touched a deep chord within me, such that I found myself emotionally revved up at the finale when the main characters declared their love to each other. Another reason why this book touched me is that it exposed the insidious prejudices that different cultures may have towards another – a bias that has unfortunately damaged relationships – often times permanently.

Book Review and Release: A Love Rekindled



So, A Love Rekindled will be launching in about a week from now, and the first book review has been published by a sweet friend. Folake gives A Love Rekindled 5 out of 5 stars and highly recommends it to anyblody, especially those that enjoyed A Heart to Mend. Head on over to read the full review...

Empowering You...: Book Review and Release: A Love Rekindled by Myne ...: "Pre-Publication Review of A Love Rekindled by Myne Whitman If you liked A Heart to Mend, you’ll love A Love Rekindled. Myne Whitman is on ..."

Folake Taylor is also an author, her book The Only Way is up is an inspiring read.

Sweet City of Mine


So, I'll be sharing a video I made about the city I currently live in - Seattle. We live in the suburbs and I don't often go into the city, but it's always fun when we do. Well, except for the parking, and the one-way streets that just jump out at you. However, I love walking and can safely say that most places in downtown are within walking distance of each other.

This is for the Sweet City of Mine Blogfest by Holly of Girl About Town"...post an entry on your blog about your favourite city. Whether it is the city you live in, the place you wished you lived in, somewhere you travel to often or have only been once. Or it could be a city that only you know of, a city that you have created in your own writing. You can post it as a descriptive piece of writing, a poem, a collection of photos, drawings, a video, a scrapbook page, greeting card...It's your city, you choose."

Enjoy the video. If you cannot view it, please check the Bellevue Botanical Garden post HERE.

The Lost/Found BlogFest and 500 Followers Giveaway!

Just a reminder to start getting your posts ready. To those who have not signed up, or left a comment to enter for the giveaway, you can also do so now. All the best everyone!


So, having hit the 500 mark, I want to use this opportunity to thank you all, my friends, fans, blog readers, feedbackers, contributors and I'll be showing my gratitude through a giveaway. You guys are really amazing! You all have been very supportive in the year and half this blog has been up, supporting me through the publication of A Heart to Mend, and now a second book is in the works!

To celebrate with all you great people, I've launched the Lost and Found Blogfest and 500 Followers Giveaway!

There is something for everyone, pick as many as you want!

1. Leave a comment below and you'll be eligible for an autographed paperback copy of my forthcoming novel, A Love Rekindled - Hot off the Press!

2. When you sign up for the blogfest using the Linky Tool below, there is another autographed copy up for grabs.


3. Those that share the BlogFest button on their blogs will be entered into a drawing for a $10 Amazon Gift Card. Button is on the top right.

4. If you like my fanpage Myne Whitman Writes, and leave a comment, you get into another drawing to win an eBook ARC of A Love Rekindled.

5. The person with the most tweets about this giveaway tagged #aloverekindled @Myne_Whitman, gets another eBook ARC of A Love Rekindled.

6. Five followers of my blog also get a chance to win eBook versions of A Love Rekindled.

7. The person I like their Lost and Found blog the most gets...wait for it...$25 cash! To be made by Paypal.

For those taking part in the BlogFest

So, why Lost and Found? Well, some of you know that my second book is forthcoming in late March. A Love Rekindled is a love story of college sweethearts, they lost each other along the way and when they found each other again after a decade, love is rekindled.

So what do you do? From March 25 - 31, post a blog telling me about anything you've ever lost and found, an object, a person, an idea, anything! The same week, visit two other blogs in the list, read their entries, and leave comments. I will be visiting everybody.

On April 3, I'll announce all the winners of the blogfest and giveaway!

ps. When you sign up below, you have to refresh after registering to see your name. I look forward to your stories. Thanks!

Picture Weekend - Bellevue Botanical Garden

I've missed having this feature on my blog for a while now. Blame the weather that made it not so appealing to be outdoors as much as one would like, and also means that pictures taken would not look good, due to poor lighting. When there's rain, I don't even want to bring out my camera! Anyway, these are taken with my Blackberry camera, so bear with the quality.


A lovely, welcoming garden in my city. We decided to go after seeing an article in the local paper about it. The weather still isn't that great, but hey, that's what jackets and hats are meant for, right?


It definitely does grow! Lots of different plants and flowers, thriving even in the cold weather. Kudos to the gardeners.




I'm practicing my professional photography skills here...


I was scared the rocks were precariously balanced, but he proved they were glued? together somehow.


I don't think I got this beautiful miniature waterfall as I wanted, but it passes.


OK, me. You know who's behind the camera.


I think this is almost perfect! I just caught that beam of light coming through the trees. I just need someone on that rock to complete the iconic picture.


Don't ask me what he said, and then his shadow almost spoiled the shot. LOL...


Ehen, I'm more composed here.


The sculpture just gave me ideas, I'm going to fly too!


Location shot...as we make our way back...


 Like this rock, we'll always be here.Thanks for coming, and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Myne Whitman Presents: Tears of my Heart


Today, I present to you another upcoming talent. I first read this entry on NaijaStories.com and was struck the theme of the piece. Many of us rail against injustice, but we often do not understand how this must hurt those who are directly involved. The narrator of this real life piece experienced it first hand and tries to show us a view of his heart.

Martin Chisom Ojukwu is 20 years of age and a Fourth-year student of Chemical Engineering at the Federal University of Technology, Owerri in Nigeria. He's your average young guy on the street but for the shock of premature grey hair and a pen always stuck in the right pocket of his pants! Martin loves to write, creating his own worlds, and hoping his works serve as respite for any wandering soul.

He has written a lot of articles mostly for CAMPUSLIFE pages in The Nation newspaper, and he's also done some poems, but his strength is with creative non-fiction. I'm sharing the piece with you today with permission from the author.

Enjoy...


TEARS OF MY HEART


Wednesday, December 15, 2010, I sat at home in a pair of boxer shorts watching a movie. The time was about 11am but I was on holiday and considered an occasional lazy morning my right. Then the bell buzzed. Since the time my father installed a commercial water bore-hole system at home, we have had two bells – one for the gate and another for the customers looking to buy water. The latter was the culprit on this occasion and unwilling to interrupt my lazy morning, I ignored it. The noise got too irritating however, and to make matters worse, whoever it was decided to press the second bell too. So in the cacophony of both buzzing bells, I pulled on jean shorts and a sleeveless top and walked out barefoot to go see who it was.


There were two of them, both men and in plain clothes. That was all my brain registered before one of them snaked out his arm and made a fist of my waist band. I tried to shake him off but he held on fast while the other yelled for a bus, which I hadn’t noticed earlier, to ‘come and pick this one!’. My first thought was ‘Kidnappers!’ since I lived in the notorious Aba but when the bus came closer, I saw two uniformed and armed policemen in it. I’m not so na├»ve as to think that uniform guarantees legitimacy but these men acted with a confident air, like people who had legal backing. One of them then said to me, “You are under arrest!” When I enquired about what crime I had committed, I was advised to shut up or get beaten up. Realizing that my younger sister whom I’d been home alone with had no inkling of what was happening, I started yelling for her to call my father.



These men who neither showed me any identification nor offered any explanations for arresting me threw me in a battered white Mitsubishi bus; they were gracious enough though to scribble ‘Railway Police Station’ on an bit of paper which was handed to a good Samaritan neighbor. The bus moved off with me shoved deep into its belly and after sometime, they made a stop in front of a motel on a side street still within my area. The men in plainclothes as well as the armed policemen went in leaving me with three men, the driver of the bus inclusive. They soon came out dragging along a young boy whose face and stature spoke volumes of his status as a minor. He was shoved in beside me and the bus zoomed off. At this point, I remembered stories I’d read about the manner in which military officers of nascent Nigeria were led out of their homes by soldiers only to be shot and dumped by the wayside. I never would have thought it possible but at that point, I prayed for our destination to be the police station. On the way, I talked with my fellow captive and found that he also knew nothing about why he’d been arrested AND was a mere 16 years old.

Arriving at the police station (thank God), we were both led out of the bus and up to the counter where I was shown a list of names and addresses and asked to include mine. I refused, insisting that I had to first, be told why I’d been arrested. The reply to that from one of the policemen was, “Don’t worry, we will soon put you where people like you are”. They had taken the younger boy’s name with whom I’d been arrested and were leading him towards the back when I informed the policeman that the boy was just 16; that earned me a ‘shut up!’ with a resounding slap over the head. I eventually gave my first name and address after which I was led to ‘where people like me were’ which turned out to be a cell. Square and roughly 6ft by 6ft in dimensions by my own estimation, the cell already contained ten other men. When the inhabitants of the cell saw me being led towards them, they all started yelling “No space oh!…no bring dat guy here oh!”; the policeman paid them no heed. Expecting the beating of my life as I had heard and read about, I was bundled in and the door shut.

Stepping into that cell, the first thing that struck me as abnormal was that all but one of the men was fully clothed. Like me though, most were barefooted. The second abnormal thing I noticed was that about two or three of the cell inmates had their phones with them. I figured that it’s either we were considered first class prisoners or someone knew that we shouldn’t even have been there in the first place. My fellow ‘jailbirds’ welcomed me with handshakes and mocking laughter to my utmost relief. I then learnt from them that they hadn’t been arrested as criminals, but as defaulters in the payment of either stipulated water or sanitation dues. I thought mine must have been based on water by virtue of our owning a bore-hole tap so, borrowing a fellow inmate’s phone, I called my father. He confirmed, as I had suspected that he did not owe any water dues; he said all the right things about getting me out as soon as possible but by then I had tuned out.

All I heard at that point was this loud sound in my head akin to a rushing tide. Bad as things are, I love my country and ever the optimist, I believe that our ‘one day’ is not far into the future. But I had been dragged out of my house in the full glare of every spectator like a thief, I’d been physically, verbally as well as emotionally abused, I’d been thrown in a cell like a criminal awaiting the hangman’s noose, and in all of these, I had done nothing…absolutely nothing wrong. It was a heartbreaking moment.

In a bid to lessen the burden of sorrow I bore, I conversed with my cell-mates and discovered that I was not the only martyr in Rome. One of them had been arrested at a shop where he had gone to purchase eggs. The owners of the shop supposedly owed sanitation dues and without asking questions, the policemen had arrested him. His only crime had been developing a craving for eggs at the same time the cops decided to storm the place. Another cell-mate, like me, had paid all his dues. Unlike me though, he had recognized the policemen for who they were and had asked to be allowed to produce his receipts of payment. Needless saying that he might as well have been whispering into the wind. Through the bars of the cell, I could see that the seats behind the counter and in fact, the whole station was filled to bursting with detainees ranging from the teary-eyed young ones to the weary-faced elderly and even one nursing mother shushing her wailing infant. The policewomen seated at the counter excitedly watched a movie while bantering about a former detainee who had spent days in the cell we occupied at the time because he had been an immigrant with no one to bail him out.

I spent approximately two hours locked up in that cell but within that short time, ‘my eyes were opened’. In my case, my father produced all receipts of payment which in effect, meant that he had not been issued any court summons. Seeing that I was one of the ‘innocents’, the man responsible for my dilemma switched to plan B which entailed demanding a little ‘something’ from my father. It beats me but the greedy man did indeed think that he deserved compensation for the trouble he took in dragging me from my ‘prison’ of a home to the ‘comforts’ of the police cell. My father paid him nothing and eventually I was released but no one offered me as little as an apologetic glance…I was supposed to smile and tuck the experience away in the spirit of the Christmas season. Even after I had left, there was still a crowd of people left in that station many of whom were innocent victims of the Christmas hunt by fellow men.

I have just let my pen do the bidding of a broken heart. I have heard, on countless occasions, about people who have suffered for crimes they are innocent of and I thought of it as a terrible phalange of our society. But with my experience which I am savvy enough to know is just a tinny tiny bit of the iceberg, I now know I was wrong. The wrong in condemning an innocent man cannot be put into words, the pain of it within that man cannot be quantified…it could kill him.

I lack words to express the feeling of trepidation that crowded my being as I was led away from my home without any explanations; I suffer a dearth of expressions with which to relate the shame and humiliation I felt when I wrapped my fingers around the bars of a police cell from the inside. Even if I found the words or the expressions, I couldn’t possibly communicate the heart-wrenching pain and betrayal I felt deep within my soul as I padded out in the afternoon sun into supposed freedom. Infact, I hope you never understand…trust me, you’re better off that way.

_________________

ps, The writer reserves copyright of this work.

Honing my Short Story skills - Twin Bonds

picture from Google search

Papa had hosted his age grade to a feast to celebrate his promotion at work and the new car he had purchased. It was almost over, but people still milled around. The house was all a bustle and Mama had warned us not to get underfoot. We were in the field playing when Odion, my twin collapsed on the ground crying in pain. A sharp stab almost stopped me in my tracks as I moved to him. He was lying like a baby clutching his middle. Another jab had me falling beside him with moan. Odion groaned and rolled on the wet earth not minding the mud, or the thorns hidden between the long blades of grass. I dragged myself up and limped inside to find our parents. This was worse than the pain I had experienced some months earlier, when my appendix was removed.

“Mama, Mama!” I screamed once I burst through the door.

The party scattered soon after as Papa ran out into the field and scooped Odion into his arms. My brother was unconscious by then, and Mama began to wail. Two of Papa’s friends and another woman were squeezed into the back of the car with me as Papa sped off for the clinic. Mama sat in front with Odion on her laps. She fanned him continuously, muttering a prayer intermittently. Odion recovered after some minutes and whispered my name. I whimpered and leaned over the seat. The woman with me dragged me back and pushed a small drink at me. She handed the other to Mama with the instruction to give some to Odion if possible.


We finally got to the same health center where I had my surgery done. It was the same doctor and he again diagnosed appendicitis for Odion. An operation was scheduled for that evening and we were both put on antibiotics and some panadol to stop the pain. Odion woke up after surgery, groggy from all the medication but still groaning in pain. The doctor had gone off by then and the nurses assured my mother his pain must be from the wound of the surgery. My mother and I had remained to sleep over at the center with Odion, and I told her I also still had the sharp pain of earlier in my tummy. The next day, my father came back and demanded to see the doctor. The doctor said he would wait a couple of days till the operation site healed before making any further recommendations.



Odion remained in the health center for another week. Finally the doctor recommended that my parents take him to the teaching hospital in Benin. It was the biggest group of buildings I have ever seen, but I didn't even think to explore it. By the time we got there, Odion was critical. I continued to take panadol on a regular basis for my own pain. Odion's condition worsened, and finally the doctors decided that their tests pointed to a kidney problem. They started what they said would be a long treatment, and I was forced to return home with my father two days later.

When the other children crowded around me, I didn’t play with them, but went into the empty room I used to share with Odion. I refused to eat that night, and fell asleep crying. Something was different when I woke up. There was no pain in my side, but my head was light as if it wanted to float and leave my body. I went to wake our father, and told him I wanted to go back to the hospital immediately. He said we’ll go in the afternoon which was the visiting time, but when I began to shout and scream that something was wrong, he dressed up and we left.

By the time we got to the hospital, Odion was dead. We only saw my mother rolling on the floor, her screams echoing off the walls of the hospital ward. A nurse said they had just taken Odion to the mortuary, and someone was supposed to be on the way to our house to tell my father. My mother had rushed at me the instant we walked in, her tears bathing my face, her wails piercing my ears. At that point, I collapsed.


This blogfest is organised by Rosie at East for Green Eyes. I took part in it because I want to hone my skills at writing short stories. I'm not very good at them, and I have to confess that due to the word limit, this is only the first part of a longer short story. I look forward to your feedback. Thanks!

Beware the Ides of March!

How would you like to know when you will die before the time? It sounds very morbid but for some people, they say it gives them the opportunity to plan and organize things, to spend more time with their loved ones, etc. Personally, I wouldn't mind knowing because it won't really change much, I try to live my life as if each day is the last. But maybe if they told me how, now that could be a different matter.

To the title of the post; the Ides refers usually to the middle of the month, the 15th (today) in March. Caesar in Shakespeare's play, Julius Caesar, was warned by a seer to "Beware the Ides of March" but he scoffed. Basically, Ceasar did not take the seer's predictions seriously, he went for a senate meeting after their meeting and was stabbed to death (23 times) by several of over 60 conspirators. You know that saying, Et tu Brutus? That was Caesar giving up the fight against his killers when he saw that one of them was a man he took like a son. It is said that the murderers were in such a frenzy they even wounded each other in the melee. It seems it's not today that fightings and violence begun in senate chambers.


Anyways, drawing from this "foretold death" theme  Hart Johnson of the Watery Tart in the Delusional Doom blogfest, suggests that we predict our own death, predict someone else' death, write our own obituary, write someone else's obituary, or plot someone's murder.

Very gory eh? Since I couldn't stomach doing any of the other options, I decided to predict my own death.

I will die an old and fulfilled woman in my own bed.

Hahaha...

So would you like to know when you will die before the time?

Can a heart really break?


"Anyways, the basic idea is to write about a heart breaking or one that is already broken. Show us the wretched emotions, the anger, depression, fear, whatever happens after the happy honeymooon lovey-dove V-day stuff is over and all that is left is a broken heart." Says Dawn Embers of In the Book DE

So I'll be sharing with you all a snippet from A Love Rekindled, my forthcoming book. It is one of the most poignant for me while I was writing the book. Read on and tell me what you think...


“Listen, this is the last time I’ll say this.” Chief Mukoro said, and shook a be-ringed finger at her. “I told Kevwe why Itsekiri people cannot be trusted, and he has accepted another suitable girl I chose for him. He's changed his phone number and moved out of his house, how else can he show he doesn’t want you anymore? Leave him alone!”

His words hit her like stones, leaving burning nicks in their wake. It couldn't be true, Kevwe would not choose another girl over her. “But we promised…”

“Promised what?” he pushed his face closer to hers. “Kevwe doesn’t want you. You’re not good enough for him. He can’t see where you fit into his future, and that’s it.”

“Please sir, I don’t understand…I’m sorry, but can I see Kevwe, talk to him…”

The force of the door cut her off as it slammed in her face. Efe trekked all the way to campus like one in a daze, calling on Nneka, who then followed her to her room. By the time they got there, Nneka knew the whole story. Two days later, Efe still refused to leave the shroud of her sheets.

“Why? Why? How can it end this way? If Kevwe had to reject me, at least he could do it to my face.” She sobbed, tears trickling from her eyes.


“Efe, it’s enough; stop crying. Remember, exams start next week...”

“You don’t know how I feel, or you wouldn’t be saying that,” Efe cried. “No crying will be enough, and of what good are exams if Kevwe has broken up with me?” She scrubbed at her nose. “Kevwe was everything to me, my past and my future. I loved him with my very soul. How could I continue life without him?”

“Efe, you’ll make yourself sick o.”

Efe sat up, “I want to go home, and I don’t want to come back to this place again. How can I come back where I may see Kevwe with someone else, or hear news of his wedding? You know how Benin is such a small place.”

Deep sobs welled up in her throat again as if to strangle her. “After three years with Kevwe, he rejects me. Why should I stay here, or remain in this country? Eh, tell me, why?”

Ovie came in at that point, talking as she strutted to the side of the bed, “What is this I hear?”

“Kevwe may have broken up with Efe…” Nneka replied.

Efe looked up. “Is there any doubt about it? His father told me. I’d been hoping he would call, but he hasn’t.” In the two days since that visit, she'd gone from confusion to resignation. If Kevwe could harden his heart to cut her off like this...

“So he couldn’t face you to tell you himself?” Ovie demanded as she sat. “I saw him today, and he wouldn’t talk to me too.”

“You saw Kevwe, today?” Time seemed to move in slow motion, and as Efe sat straight, she felt dizzy for a moment.

“Yes. On my way to First Bank, I saw him at UBA Akpakpava, near the roundabout. When I said hello, he ignored me. Maybe he thought I already knew about the break-up ...”

“Are you sure it was him you saw?” Efe clutched her chest. The ache in her pounding heart was becoming real.

“I’m sure. You know how I complain about his habit of jangling his keys all the time as if he’s the only one who has a car. It was the sound that caught my attention, and he was with another girl.”

Efe stopped thinking, her breathing also seemed to cease. Ovie had just confirmed her worst nightmare. All the blood in every single part of her body drained to her heart, making it expand, and it pushed against her ribs as if to burst loose. Efe sprang out of bed, screaming in fear.

“Efe stop it, stop it right now!”

She came to her senses to find Nneka and Ovie restraining her on the bed. Two girls were at the door, but Ovie went and pushed them away. Her ears rang and her eyes felt hot with piercing pain. One thought seized her mind, echoing in her head over and again until everything blurred together. Kevwe had another girl. Kevwe had another girl. Nneka and Ovie murmured above her head, but they sounded far away. Efe wondered if she was going mad. She closed her eyes and blanked her mind, but the thought refused to go.

“He has another girl. Nneka did you hear? Kevwe has another girl.”

_____________________

So, can a heart really break? Talk to me...

A Lovely Blog Award


So I had a pleasant surprise yesterday when I got a comment yesterday informing me of this award. I actually thought the blog awards season for the beginning of the year was over, but Zan Marie of In the Shade of the Cherry Tree showed otherwise.

Now I have to think very hard so as not to repeat any of the things I might have previously shared about me. Here we go...

- I am nudging the upper limits of the BMI range that is supposed to be best for people of my smallie height.

- We did not have any pets growing up (well, except the odd goat or chicken meant for Christmas or Easter) so I'm not too comfortable living with animals.

- I sometimes joke that I'm so laid back I'm lying flat but I can be very driven too, especially when it comes to time-bound projects.

- I love blogville and the community it has provided.

- Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte was one of the first romance novels I read and started my love affair with the genre.

- I love animated features, have I said this before?

- I think this one may be cheating for those who've read my About Myne tab up there. I love thrill rides and Atala still can't believe I did a reverse bungee.




The other requirements that go along with the awards are to;

3. Pass the awards along to as many as fifteen blogs you have found recently - SEE BELOW
4. Notify the bloggers of their awards - ON MY WAY
Joy Tamsin David - Edgy Inspirational Romance

KitKat - Kit Kat Tales

Writes by Moonlight

Dawn Allen - Write on

Chizy K - Chizy's Spyware

Heather Gardner - The waiting is the hardest part

Vyvyka - Strategic Chic

MsNana - Hopeful Romantic

Funmi - Heart Flows

Ginny Marie - Lemon Drop Pie

Tidbitz - Earthly delights

Carol - Art Muse Dog

A Belle, A Bean and a Chicago Dog

Scathing Weekly

Opeyemi - Just Stories

Adelle Maria

Adiya - The Corner Shop

You should check out as many of these new blogs as you can. They are really lovely.

ps. One more post before the weekend. See you soon.

Tuesday Talk - Dual Personality?

In his WebReads for 11th February, Dhjax linked to a site that could offer personality tests based on one's blog.

At first I thought, what a hoax, but I'm somehow addicted to personality tests, IQ tests and all that, so off I went. The site is Typealyser.com, and all you need is enter your blog URL and viola! It tells you who you are.

I tried my two websites, this blog, and my author page, MyneWhitman.com. It was interesting indeed to find that I showed different parts of my personality on both sites.

For the author page, I am The Mechanic, and on the blog, I am The Socializer



I actually think some of these personality tests try to hard to box people into narrow definitions. I have come to realize as a few others have too, that most of us fall into the middle cracks of these tests and have a combination of different personalities. For me, mine can change on an hourly basis even. In the long run though, and more generally, I think I'm closer to the ISTP of my author page, and I've heard that it shows up in my books. But I can be social when I want to be, and that is why I think I've managed this blog and my branding of my books quite well.

What do you think of personality tests? Which of my two do YOU think suits me better? Which are you? Go do the test HERE, and then comeback to share. I promise it will take only a minute.

Catch me if you can - Blogfest


This blog is thanks to Kristina of KayKays Corner who says "On Monday March 7, post the first 550 words (or less) of your WIP on your blog."

The purpose is to get some feedback on what you guys think so far. Please please please, leave comments. I need some bashing cos I'm currently still plotting this and this is like the first EVER draft of the chapter 1.

Enjoy...

*****


It was the light being switched on that did the job. Bolade stretched awake blinking blearily in the harsh fluorescence. The sound of music playing in the background did not help the small headache scrimping away at the back of her skull. She cracked one eye open and groaned. Her mother stood at the open door of her bedroom, wrapped in a colorful apron.

“Bolade, get up. We’re already in the kitchen and I need all the hands I can get. I sent Funmi to come and wake you up about an hour ago.”

Bolade turned over and tried to shut out her mother’s voice. However her mother must have opened the door wider because the music from the living room became louder. Jingle bells, Jingle bells, Jingle all the way…

“Bolade… Bolade… ” her mother was standing right over her head.

Peeping out of a half-shut eye, Bolade saw a ladle tapping against an apron-covered thigh. When she raised her head, the glower in her mother’s eyes made her shrug off her blanket.

“Alright, alright… I’m coming…” Bolade muttered, pushing her legs over the side of the bed.


She had been so much looking forward to Christmas as a time to rest with her family, but now it all felt like an anticlimax. She had arrived from Dallas a week ago and since then had not gotten any breathing space. If she was not being pushed to greet one relative or the other, she was expected to perform a domestic task in the house. And she hated cooking.

She looked beyond her mother to the twinkling lights of the Christmas tree in the living room. The tentative light of dawn filtering in through the drapes gave the outer room a cozy feel which had fled her room since her mum switched on the overhead light in the bid to wake her. She wiped her eyes and stretched again.

“Is it the chat we had last night that is bothering you?” her mother asked, the ladle tapping again.

“Mama, I just didn’t sleep well. I think I have a headache coming on. But I’ll join you in the kitchen soon.”

“Remember what you promised.”

“I never promised anything, but I will see him like I agreed.”

With one final glare, her mother left the room and closed the door. Bolade dropped her head into her hands and sighed. About two days after her arrival, her parents had started a catalogue of men she needed to meet during her time at home. Last night, her mother had called her into an empty bedroom to drive home the point. Bolade was overdue for marriage and her mother had taken things into her own hands. There was a friend, whose son was looking for a wife. He was also in Ilorin for the Christmas celebrations and had agreed to meet Bolade either at the Midnight Eve carol or the Morning church service. Wasn’t it so obviously a sign that both of them lived in the United States and were home at the same time? Her mother had gone on and on to praise the man, listing all his good qualities and how he was perfect for Bolade.

God, I want my baby! - Lily Olushola (Guest Author)

During my trip to Nigeria, I met this lovely lady who is also a writer and who just had her first book published. Her name is Lily Olushola and her book is an inspirational little book for those waiting on God for children and those who love and support them.

I finished the book in about an hour and half and it was really very informative. God, I want my baby! is a source of hope and encouragement for those who wait. It is written in a conversational manner and uses short stories, poetry and guest articles to pass its message. It will definitely encourage women who are waiting, especially those who are Christian, whether they're waiting by faith, or have given medical science a chance. Lily in the book goes on to adopt a daughter but the prayer is that all women experience that joy of having their own children.


1. Whats the book about? - its about my eight year journey waiting for a baby. I began writing it sometime in 2005 (while i was still waiting) just to share my thoughts and experiences with the hope of encourging others who were walking the same path as I discovered the strenght in shared experiences. Though i planned to publish back then as a book from a woman who was still trusting God for a baby, for some reason, I never closed on it and interesting things happened subsequently ( the adoption of our daughter and the subsequent birth of our son). I then decided to write about that in the books conclusion. There's more details on my website.

2. The Printing Journey - this was extremely tough. printing in Nigeria is an ordeal apparently. i have a thousand wasted copies in my backyard as the printing was so poorly done that i couldnt accept it and we had to start all over. reading is a visual experience and as much as one strives for content, i think its important that a book is presentable and friendly for the reader.

God I want my baby is also available at

AuthorHouse - Buy online

Laterna ventures, 13 oko awo str off adetokunbo ademola. Victoria island

Hub Media Store, The Palms Shopping Mall Lekki

Silverbird gallery. 133 ahmadu bello way , victoria island

Terra kulture, Tiamuyu savage street victoria island

The book can be self delivered by calling +234 807 924 4210

Some of the book reviews are as follows...

"Simply and beautifully written. What moved me the most about this book is its honesty. It made me cry and laugh at the same time and reminded me of my own struggles which interestingly, had nothing to do with childbirth" - Sope Williams - Elegbe, Lecturer in Law, University of Nottingham.

"A fantastive book emotive and very enjoyable read" - Busola Solanke, Consultant.

"This book does more than highlight the trials of waiting so long for something you so earnestly want; it is a tender depiction of the wisdom of God." - Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani, Author, I do not come to you by chance.

“An incredibly well written book. The style is creative and engaging and the narrative is very alive. That the story ends so gloriously will help many through the near despair of waiting” - Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, S.A.N
Pastor and former Lagos state Attorney General and commissioner for Justice

“I love the interplay of "autobiography", poetry and verse. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the content is suitable for just about anyone in need of encouragement … I'm glad the experience produced this wonderful book.” - ‘Subomi Plumptre, Brand Consultant and Author, No Bullsh*t

Introducing - Myne Whitman Presents

So starting from March, I am adding this segment on my blog, "Myne Whitman Presents". It will be like a showcase for the upcoming writers who share short stories on their  blog, to introduce my awesome feedbackers to new talent. Most of the stories will come from NAIJA STORIES, and I'm also open to my readers who want to be showcased. I promise you that I'll only publish stories which I liked and which I'm sure you will too, from romantic fiction, to chicklit to suspense. Are you excited? Let's go then...


The short story for today is by Chizitere Ojiaka, who blogs at Courageous Fingers. She is a graduate of University of Nigeria Nsuka, and is working on her first novel. Chizitere is also a publicist and launches her online entertainment portal through Prodigy Magazine today.


Enjoy the Short Story below...

AN AWESOME DATE INDEED.

Friday the 16th day of January 2009 had to be the most awesome day of my life. Not sure if awesome is the exact right word to use, but a brief account of my experience that day will give you a opportunity to put a word to it yourself.

So my awesome day started with me waking up early, strong and ready to face the best work day of every week, Friday. The only day half of the people in the world thanked God for. The only day people like me got to work with a broad smile and counted down anxiously to 5pm, closing time.


That Friday, I happened to have two special reasons to countdown to closing time. One, I had a date. Two, I had another date. The two dates weren’t actually for the same day but both were with handsome men with a prospectively good future. Two handsome young who ran very successful businesses, were single, ready to mingle a while and then settle down in the end. One of the dates was for 8pm that Friday while the other was for 2pm the next day. Considering that I was a pretty lady, thirty two years of age, from the Ibo tribe, a workaholic with two jobs and a high class society chic, getting regular dates wasn’t hard for me at all. It was getting these dates with the right kind of men (the kind of men I wanted) that was. My mother bothered the hell out of my life about marriage, talking to me about it like my being unmarried was a curse that I brought upon myself with my own hands.

My mum and I even had a fight on Christmas day, then another on the 30th of December (five days after). My mother never let me breath on the issue, always comparing me with my younger sister. She knew how much I hated it when she did that but she never stopped. She would scream at me to look at how happy my sister was with her husband and 2 year old son.

This little sister of mine my mum wanted me to emulate is a worthless vegetable of a woman as far as I am concerned. A university graduate with a second class upper degree certificate in psychology who decides to ditch here training and prospects of a fantastic future is a really lame vegetable in my world. As much as I thought that about my sister, I never wanted to say it to her. I didn’t want to ruin her self esteem or make her jeopardize the blessings of the peaceful marriage she had just so she could prove me wrong. I swore never to let my mother’s pressure make me bulge to doing that.

So I got dressed for work that Friday. Luckily for me, hair and make-up were great. My outfit for that day looked just perfect and my car didn’t even dare to mess up. I drove to work and all through the drive, I had a mixed tape of some classic old school music keep me company. Although I am a crazy extrovert, I love to listen to laid back simple old school music. I listened to the kind of music only very few people my age bore to listen to. A smooth morning also always gave me the lift I needed to swing through the rest of the day.

I got to work and realized that my boss had his secretary prepare some proposal letters which he needed me to deliver immediately to the companies they were addressed to and meet with their managing directors to negotiate some deals. I gathered the letters and hit the road almost immediately. I was glad that the assignment was going to give me a chance to spend the entire day out of the office because I hated it when I had to sit behind a desk all day. I hated anything that made me sit, except if I sat because I was typing something really important.


I had driven a couple of miles away from my office when I met this really crazy traffic as soon as I hit the express way. There was a bank around the area, just a few blocks away from the turning that lead to the express way. It was the same bank my boss had me or his secretary carry out some cash transactions on his behalf sometimes so I knew the security guards. I begged one of them to let me park my car inside the compound and promised him that I would arrive before closing time to pick it up. He let me in, so I parked the car at a corner of the compound where I was sure no one would be disturbed by its presence. I took my handbag and the folder that contained the letters along with me, locked the doors of my car and walked out of the bank’s premises. I flagged a commercial bike down just at the gate of the bank and bargained with the dude that was riding it. The traffic on the express was very serious so I would have been the biggest fool in the world if I had parked my sleek air conditioned Toyota Camry 2.2 saloon car only to board a dirty rickety Lagos taxi car all because of what? Class? Oh no I don’t deceive myself.

The bike took me to the area I was headed and dropped me off across the road at my exact destination. I got off the bike, paid the dude and prepared to cross over to the other side of the road. Just as I was about to cross the road I realized one of my buttons was undone. I fumbled with it, trying to fix it while walking across the road.

Like a bolt of thunder from nowhere, a Honda CRV jeep stuck me from my right. I flew up in the air like a light nylon bag that had just been blown into the air by a strong wind. Before I got any chance to think or figure out what had just happened, I had hit my back on the bonnet of another car that was parked by the side of the road and rolled down into the gutter beside the car. I became unconscious shortly so I have no idea what else went on from then. The only thing I remember was waking up on a hospital bed a couple of days later. Different wires and strings were strapped to different parts of my body and my mother who was sitting beside me had her head on my bed. She was sleeping.

I didn’t want to disturb her sleep because she looked like she really needed it. Her face was turned to my direction and her eyes were shut restfully closed. It was hard to believe she was the same person whose rage came down on me like brimstone whenever she talked to me about marriage. I knew this accident had just given her an extra point to give me as reason why I should be married. One new reason why she thinks I should consider finding a husband as a more important project than starting my own production company.

My mother talked about this whole marriage thing like it was my fault. She talked about it like I was the one who kept these men from proposing to me. Like it was my fault that more men wanted women they didn’t have to feel inferior around more that they wanted real capable ones. She’d probably say that I would have saved her some energy if I had a husband who could have kept me company in the hospital instead of her. She’d probably say that if I had a husband, I’d not have to work as hard as I did to the money to pay my bills. She probably thinks the only reason I work is to pay my bills.

I’m still not sure what those men I was supposed to have dates with that weekend might have thought about me when I didn’t show up for their dates. I had my own awesome date in the hospital anyway and none of them showed up. Having only my mother and a few friends of mine come visit me at the hospital while I was sick made me realize how important family is. It helped me understand why my mum acted like a crazy old woman whenever she argued with me about marriage. Although I have no regrets about how my life turned out with my job, my failed relationships, my wonderful dates, my great friends, my fabulous yet annoying mother, my simple down to earth sister whom I still thought of as a lame vegetable of a woman, I still hope that I find my own prince charming someday and get the chance to raise a normal family of my own.

Celebrating World Book Day - My Book Promo Video


So I just found out that today was World Book Day. So how do we celebrate?

By sharing this video which was made by Lowla Dee, a writer of short stories on www.LowlaDee.com. She used the news promo which you may have seen on some sites. What do you think? Can you spot the typo?

Full Book Trailer coming soon!





To continue the celebration, remember to buy a book today, read one, give one as a gift, donate to your nearest library, hug a writer/ author/ blogger/ yourself.

Have fun. Next post coming shortly.

Debate Tuesday - Bloody or Fcuk?

Which is worse?

Yes it is still Tuesday here, I know it's Wednesday in some other places. If it is, bear with me.


So to the topic. I'm referring to the curse words used very frequently by a few people to express displeasure. And I've decided to break it down to sex and violence. Sex = Fuck and Violence = Bloody.

Now my grouse isn't why why people use these curse words in the first place -  personally I try not curse, though I don't mind terribly if those around me do - but why the violent curse is more acceptable than the sexy one.

I mean come on. During the Oscars on Sunday night, one of the winners used the F-word in her thank you speech and that was quickly blanked out. However, one other guy, I can't remember the specific person, used the B-word, and that got a pass.

As Atala said in agreeing with my peeve, there's another way to look at it. One of the curse words gives rise to life (and pleasure if I might add), while the other one takes away life (or causes pain and distress). So why is it the latter that is allowed on family TV and on prime time?

In my opinion, either you ban all the words considered bad (by everybody including me - and I really hate bloody), or you let them all through.

What say ye?

ps, you may be interested in this bloggers argument in terms of how sex and violence are portrayed in shows. One show that I cannot bear for combining the two is True Blood. Why did they have to spoil sex with all that blood? It's even in their title, urghhh...

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