Upon reading and reviewing ‘Once Upon A First Love‘ and ‘I’ll Keep Loving You‘ (follow links to read my reviews on these books – https://rovingbookwormng.com/2018/11/28/once-upon-a-first-love-by-tope-omotosho/ and https://rovingbookwormng.com/2019/07/26/book-review-ill-keep-loving-you-by-tope-omotosho/) by Tope Omotosho, I felt compelled to interview the author as I was fascinated by the themes and strong message of God’s love for humanity especially through works of fiction.
As a Christian and an ardent lover of the Christian fiction genre, I am always interested in the back story, the inspiration and the passion behind an author’s writing and I am grateful to God and Tope for the opportunity to conduct this online interview.
Tope Omotosho is passionate about impacting the world through timeless wisdom and knowledge found in her thought-provoking stories and writing that applies to all ages. Her stories and articles cut across love, relationship and romance in a way that does not deny the relevance of God in our everyday life. She is a devoted Christian passionate about bringing people to the knowledge of God’s true and unfailing love. You can read more of her stories and articles on http://www.lifegodandlove.com/
RBWNG: Why do you write?
Tope Omotosho: I write because I love it. Ever since I was a child, writing had been a way of escape for me; an opportunity to journey into another world where everything is as I would like. It used to be a safe haven for me at a point in my life. Due to my family background, I accepted writing as a way to pour out my feelings and try to be happy. A way to find my greatest satisfaction or meaning to my life. But now, since I wrote Once Upon A First Love, it has changed. I have come to discover that God is my greatest satisfaction and, just as I am, my writing is a tool in His hands.
RBWNG: Who is your ideal reader? Who do you write for?
Tope Omotosho: Well, I believe I write for both Male and Female. Teenagers and adults. Let’s say from sixteen and above. I believe love is paramount in all ages and from the age of sixteen is where hormones are raging and crying out to be explored. Having teenagers read my books should help enlighten them as to what true love, God’s love, is all about.
RBWNG: The Christian themes and messages in your stories are strong. What has been the feedback especially from non-Christians?
Tope Omotosho: (Laughs) I haven’t had any negative feedback. Well, except the one where I was told Once Upon A First Love was too religious but the story was still enjoyed. The truth is, I expect to be lashed out at, because not a lot of people would resonate with the Christian messages.
RBWNG: Do you view writing as a spiritual practice and if yes, how?
Tope Omotosho: Absolutely Yes! I don’t know how to explain it, but each story I write . . . God teaches me new things. When I wrote ‘Always One More Time’ four years back, I didn’t know how it would end. Didn’t know what the lesson of the story was. But I felt God telling me to trust Him as I wrote. It was at the very end that I got to understand the message of the book and up till this moment, the book still speaks volumes to me when I go through it. So writing for me is totally spiritual. There are times I’m praying in the spirit as I write and God specifically tells me what music to listen to as I’m typing. Music helps me flow as I write.
RBWNG: Do you think that Christian Fiction or stories written with Christian values will gain mainstream acceptance?
Tope Omotosho: I honestly don’t think so. The world we’re in is only getting darker but as Christians, our light must keep shining for all to see and for the people to be led to God. Furthermore, the Bible has already said that people would prefer listening to non-gospel themes than the Words of God. However, I think we can’t rule out the fact that God can and will do what He will do. Who are we to limit the move of God? If He wants to use stories to transform the world and minister to the unsaved then my response is, use me Lord.
RBWNG: What has been the greatest challenge in your writing process and how have you been able to write regardless?
Tope Omotosho: I won’t say it’s my greatest challenge, but then I can say I struggle with how people would perceive it. When I’m writing around a theme I know God wants me to, it takes me a little while to get with the program. Call it fear of what people would say. But at the end, God encourages me with His Word or sends people who encourage me. My husband helps out a lot in this. Constantly reminding me why I do what I do and our ultimate goal is to lead others to Christ. Another major challenge is time. There are a million things seeking attention excluding the lure of social media. But God has been helping me (smiles).
RBWNG: How did publishing your first book change your process of writing?
Tope Omotosho: It was my first time printing so I came to terms with everything that goes into self-publishing a book and I wouldn’t say it’s a walk in the park. It was, and still is, hard work. Running it financially is a heavy toil. Thank God for all those God laid on their hearts to help out. I remember telling my husband I wasn’t going to publish another book in a couple of years. Little did I know God had other plans. So when I’ll Keep Loving You was going to be written . . . it was tasking for me. I kept thinking if the next book would meet the expectations of the readers and if people would like it. I almost let that be my motivation for writing but I was reminded of my purpose.
RBWNG: Do you hide any secrets in your books only a few people will find?
Tope Omotosho: (Smiles) Maybe. Only those who know would know.
RBWNG: What one thing will you give up to become a better writer?
Tope Omotosho: Interesting question. T.V. I love watching movies and some programs. I would have to sacrifice that time to write more.
RBWNG: What would you view as personal success in your work as a writer?
Tope Omotosho: Souls. Winning souls for God. Also, for people to get to know the love of God more, be blessed and transformed. For me? That’s success. Oh yes, I would love to make money while doing it.
I hope you enjoyed reading this interview with Tope Omotosho as much as I did. Her books are available on http://www.okadabooks.com and at the Rovingheights Bookstores in Lagoa and Abuja (You can contact them on instagram on @rovingheights).