Hey Sparkle Writers, you are not ready for the amazingness our interview with Eketi Edima Etti contains! Our first #WriterSpotlight for the year is loaded with wisdom and wit. If you have multiple passions you certainly would learn a thing or two from Eketi.
Enjoy her interview with us.
Hello, Eketi. Kindly tell us about yourself. Where do I begin?
I am your average girl next door. The first child of the family, Christian, vivacious, lover of life and people. I am a multi-passionate person. I have several passions and I’ve tried my hands at acquiring the skills to go with them. So, I’m a lawyer, author, editor, content creator, farmer, entrepreneur, MC, actor and social media manager. It’s a lot, I know.
How long have you been writing?
Since I was four years old. Blame my mother. She started me on the path by making me write letters to her and my father at least once a week. However, I didn’t take my writing seriously until 2011. That’s when I decided what I did was worth giving more time and attention to.
How has it paid off for you?
It has, in ways I never imagined when I started out. The most important part of it all has been the journey of self-discovery it’s taken me on.
You are well known for your funny and highly engaging stories on Twitter, what’s your source of inspiration?
Life and people. The one recurrent comment I hear when people read my stories is that they can relate to them. Our world is filled with very interesting people and their lives are interwoven tapestries of compelling stories.
What genre of writing do you focus on and why?
Fiction is my major genre. My head is an interesting place and my imagination constantly demands that I give it a chance to express itself in words.
Your book ‘Chinda Ella’s is making waves online. Tell us about it.
It’s a humorous Nigerian parody of the popular fairytale, Cinderella.
What inspired you to write the book?
I love fairytales and folklore. So, one day, I was watching the latest Cinderella movie. When I got to the scene where she fled the palace leaving her shoe behind, I was struck by something I’d never noticed before.
According to her Fairy Godmother, everything was supposed to change back to what they were before, at midnight. But the shoes didn’t change. Why?
I was like, “Lai lai! Dis tin na scam!” And then it hit me—why don’t you write a Nigerian parody of this story, using this scene as the cornerstone? Make it as outrageous as possible.
And so, Chinda Ella was born.
Last year, you were named one of 100 most influential Nigerian writers under 40, how did you get to that point?
Honest answer? I don’t know. I didn’t set out to be influential and I wasn’t expecting the nomination either. I guess, when you’ve been at something for long enough, people notice. It does feel good though, being noticed.
What do you love most about being a writer?
The fact that I utterly enjoy doing it. Every time I write, I do so for the love of words and the ease with which they come to me.
What’s your advice to an upcoming writer?
First, write. You get better at your craft when you keep practicing. It is in doing this that you find your unique writing voice and style. Secondly, don’t write for praise, especially the kind on social media. Write first for you, with your audience being the secondary consideration.
Lastly, don’t you dare compare yourself to another writer. Do you.