Musings

Writing this Saturday away.

This Saturday morning, I spent some time completing my draft of BANTU KNOTS. I began writing it on my Whatsapp story yesterday afternoon. I noticed I’m faster writing something smaller that leads into a longer flash story these days.  Bantu Knots is an erotic thriller about Nkechi who investigates the suicide of her secret lover, Corper Lanre.

It’s delightful writing thriller the past day and two. That aside, I’m still drafting N70 Rides to Love, a romantic flash story. In it, love sneaks up on an okada rider and a woman who just moves into the neighborhood. Although, my writing is dragging along. Zaza is completely still on hold. Reading a good book does help inspire writing I’ve noticed. I’m 68 pages away from the end of Laughing As They Chased Us by Sarah Jackman. Its been a delightful read! I’m about picking up What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky by Leslie Nneka Arimah as my next read. Yay! My volunteer application to LIPFest was accepted. Now, I just have to go for training. I hope I’m not cash strapped this coming week so its easier.

To enjoy the Indomie Chicken Extravaganza add salt. Its spicy, chicken flavoured noodles with tiny bits of chicken and sausage slices but bland.

I remember drafting an open letter to Nigerian Movie Producers after watching several foreign book adaptations and Nigerian romantic comedies at Marturion Cinemas, Igando. Then I discovered I never published it. So here it is;

DEAR NIGERIAN FILM MAKERS,

Can you produce more adaptation of Nigerian literature books? Yes, the recent comedies, coming-of-age- films and chick flicks have been interesting. I really enjoyed watching Merry Men, The Real Yoruba Demons on Sunday. Don’t leave all the adaptations for foreign movie producers Gems. Not only classic Nigerian literature or modern classics deserve cinematic representation. Best-sellers, unique debuts and brave books that address life issues (like Sickle Cell Anaemia, Child Molestation, old age, culture, LGBTQI, etc) will make the cut. Its no longer enough watching theater plays of best-selling Nigerian books. 

Some books that’ll make great films are Independence and Like A Mule Bringing Ice cream to the Sun by Sarah Manyika, Born on a Tuesday by Elnathan John, The Last Days At Forcados High School by A.H Mohammed, Everything Good will Come by Sefi Atta, The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives by Lola Shoneyin, Daughters Who Walk This Path by Yejide Kilanko, Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo, Easy Motion Tourist by Leye Adenre, Oil on Water by Helon Habila and many others. Short Story collection and book trilogies or series can also be adapted into Tv or Online series. Kabu Kaby by Nnedi Okorafor, What it Means When a Man Falls from the Sky by Leslie Arimah, It Wasn’t Exactly Love, Whispering Trees by Abubakar Ibrahim and many more!

I and other Naija book lovers want to excitedly watch Nigerian book adaptation. Like we were about Crazy Rich Asians, The Hate U Give and others. Our reading squads and clubs want to buy tickets, take selfies with actors, grin at well represented plots, review and enjoy! This is a niche of movie making that isn’t fully exploited by Nigerian filmmakers. 

From a Gem in Lagos,

Amethyst.

I think I’ll go on a reading break before continuing writing. I’ve been at my Mum’s house at Ikorodu. It was fun celebrating her birthday together  on Thursday. She loved one of her gifts, The Parrot In My Head by Anuoluwapo Sotunde as much as she loved her surprise cake and wig.

How’s your Saturday and weekend going?

 

Advertisements

HOW CAN I READ MORE BOOKS?

Its easy to wonder how people who read over 50-200 books in a year do it. I’m sharing my top tips on reading more books and those of other professional readers and book bloggers.

#1 Read many books at a time: Be a book prostitute! You can start three, two, four books at a time. Depending on what you’re comfortable with. This way you get to alternate when anyone gets boring or slow paced. This has been attested by book bloggers to help cure creative slumps or blocks. If you a professional reader, read your review copies in time and share your thoughts. Make sure you also alternate between books on your To-Be-Read and Did-Not-Finish lists

#2 Move. On. To. Another Book: It took me a while to come to terms with the fact that I won’t always finish a book. That isn’t a bad thing. Pick up another book. Yes, your DNF list might be growing but you can always go back instead of staying stuck.

#3  Include Books in Your Budget: Yep, you can read more books by buying them. Buy them from a reading app, online bookstores or conventional book vendors. Get books by planning to buy them, saving the money for their purchase and then paying. You can get free books from online giveaways or applying for a review copy.

#4 Have a Reading Goal: When this year started I shared my Reading Goals with you. It’s been immensely helpful having a reading goal drive my picks. I chose to read more poetry, works by other African writers and new genres. Others have a figure of reads they want to attain like 50 or 120 books a year. Let your goal be S.M.A.R.T and work towards it. Read this for tips on setting reading goals.

#5 Partake in a Reading Challenge: Reading Challenges gets a reader to read new genres, books within a specified period of time. It is usually exciting reading each participant thoughts on various books they pick for the challenge. The goal is to have fun charting new realities. While you participate share book pictures and your reviews on your social media.

#7 Set a Daily Reading Time: Even for academic, work, self improvement studying, setting a daily reading time is effective. Decide if you’ll 30, 2, 40 or 60 minutes within a day. Everyday read during that stipulated time you carved out. You can share the time across the day or read more than that time. Just read!

#8 Join a Book Club: This is helpful for a newbie or hobby readers. A book club offers picks to its members so you don’t have to go through the ‘what-do-I-read-next’ stage. It’s usually a community of supportive readers who share their thoughts on the chosen books. You get exposed to various cultural realities. Book club picks are always diverse even when they focus on specific genres.

Read how to improve your reading habit to help you read more books. You’d read more books before the year runs out using the tips above. All the best Gem!

THINGS WE DID

We had done the book squad movie and theatre dates to see adaptations long before Nigerian Movie Producers began adapting bestselling Nigerian literature. We’d travelled first class with just a handbag. Only lace lingeries hidden underneath joggers and Lagos Fashion Week treasured tshirts buys kept us warm. We’d emitted grace, wealth and resilience long before they were bottled in affordable glass jars. We’d been worth millions long before they knew what networth, stock portfolio. mutual funds, trading rates of treasure bills, gold bars meant.

We’d engineered, innovated, destroyed, failed and excelled before they wrote to society, through exams and applications, requesting entrance into society’s conditioning. We’d been fluid with our lives, pursuits, love and appearance..long before hashtags morphed to be cyber-economic-political tools. Seeing them do the things we did pulls out to shove in truth. The truth that life is a cycle. From the iced cloudlike particles from the top of Mount Everest to murky, brown bottom of the Dead Sea. Change circles up and down. It’s a privilege to see you all today, the first colony of African Union delegates take the things we did to Mars.

The pride in the soft female voice didn’t fall like the ozone layer that dissolved over Lagos. The headsets beeped red and the cabin filled up with harmattan fog as the pods closed off. I never flew first class on a shuttle pod in Nigeria, I think to myself as stasis is induced. My last thought was of Ayinke, I knew she and her pink frames would be watching the sunny, blue skies for a bird nestling me and other young brilliant minds from across the African continent.