Today, we went all the way to Ghana to bring you a multi-talented writer whose love for words has allowed her to carve her own niche in the writing world. Her name is Charlotte Addison and we love the fact that she hasn’t left her success as a writer to chance. She’s actively on the look out for opportunities to tap into. Enjoy our interview with her.
Hello Charlotte. Can you briefly tell us about you?
Charlotte Addison is a writer of short stories and poems, Founder of Enlaza Global – a translation service provider, a literary enthusiast and Spanish translator at the Jeli, a publishing firm.
How did you discover writing?
(Smiles) I started out as a creative person really. I can remember drawing and writing little stories about the people and things I drew. I used to cut out the comic and sarcastic cartoons from newspapers and make a collage out of them and tell stories. The time it actually hit me that I have the ability to write was in primary six, when my English teacher was happy with an essay I wrote which was a storytelling essay of some sort.
Which do you prefer writing stories or poems?
I prefer both. The core centre of both is stories. I wrote stories first, then after been challenged by a good friend of mine, Nana Yaw Kwakye, I started creating poems. When you read any of my pieces, you will find stories in my poems and a poetic atmosphere in my stories.
What’s the one thing that can make you quit writing?
(Laughs) That is a very good question. I have no idea! One thing I know is that I tend to write less when I am very busy with other things of life but to quit writing entirely, I can’t tell.
Can you tell us the worst thing anyone has said about your article?
I don’t think I have seen the worst yet, but one close to it was a message I received from a man who read one of my stories and said a particular line bothered him and he felt betrayed by the character I tried to portray and did not understand why I had to use that line. Well, I was quite surprised at how passionate he was and I appreciated the fact that he took time to read and enjoy the story so much it resonated with him.
Do you think you will ever retire from writing?
No, I don’t think I will retire from writing. Writing is an art; it will ooze out when the muse strikes!
Your stories and poems have been published on various platforms like ‘Echoes from OLA’, The 2016 Radioactive anthology, The Women. How were you able to achieve this?
I do send out my works to different literary platforms for publication and research has helped a lot in locating these platforms. For instance, when I saw the advert on Facebook calling for submissions for the Radioactive anthology ‘The Women’, I decided to participate in it. I didn’t have a poem fit for that anthology but I was determined, therefore I wrote one, submitted it and voila! It got selected.
Can you please tell aspiring writers how to get their work out there?
I believe writers must believe in their works. If you enjoyed writing it, people will enjoy reading. (Smiles). Find platforms and share your works with them. Don’t be afraid of getting rejected. You will never know unless you try!
How rewarding has writing been for you?
Writing has been rewarding in terms of fulfilment. I am excited that people read my stories or poems and truly enjoy it. In monetary value, not yet, hopefully soon when I publish my collections.
Tell us two platforms you really want your writing to take you to and why.
I will like my work to take me to The Caine Prize and the Common Short story Prize mainly because these serve as launching pads for a great literary career.
Do you have a writing mentor? Please give your reasons why you have one if you do.
I don’t have a writing mentor at the moment but I love anything Chuma Nwokolo and Ben Okri! They are writers who inspire me.
Tell us two interesting things social media doesn’t know about you
- A) I love dancing salsa! B) The best friend my sister and I share in common is a twin like myself (smiles)
If you could meet three writers who will they be and why?
- a) Onelio Jorge Cardoso – His narrative talent revealed in the art of showing and not telling that engages the mind of the reader.
- b) Chuma Nwokolo – His ability to capture the spirit, the image and times of his environment into his writing and for his sense of humour
- c) Toni Morrison – Her grasp and passion of heritage, history and identity and style of narration.
What do you do in your leisure time?
In my leisure time, I read, listen to messages preached by some men of God, spend time with family and friends, or go salsa dancing.
What’s your ultimate dream as writer?
That will be to write stories that the world will enjoy reading so much they will keep Charlotte Addison book in their home for their great grand-children. (Smiles)
Download Charlotte’s anthologies; ‘Authors of Emancipation‘ and ‘The Women’.