I hope you are all doing well and staying safe.
Welcome to our monthly feature for authors.
The author for the month of April is the talented Glory Abah, author of the recently published ‘Husband Hunting 101’ and ‘Diary of a Wall Flower’ which I have reviewed on this blog (Check them out in “Book Reviews).
After reading her books and a few short stories written by her, I became curious about the author and immediately wanted to feature her here. I am grateful that she obliged and I hope you enjoy reading her answers to the ten questions about her life as a published author.
So here we go…..
Glory Abah loves writing stories with happy endings because the world has enough sad stories. She is also a creative writing coach and she loves teaching and talking about the writing craft. She is always available on IG and Facebook. You can contact her via firstname.lastname@example.org
Glory gives us a sneak-peak into her life as an author by answering 10 question. Between, I love this photo of her!
What is the biggest surprise you experienced after becoming a writer?
Glory: I was not as good as I thought when I started. I had all the brouhaha confidence starting because I knew I could write. But my first book showed me that I had still had a way to go. I took the constructive criticisms, mulled them over in my mind, and found out that I could and would get better. That experience taught me to consider all angles, to also consider the market, my readers, not just me when I’m writing. I had to learn to be politically and morally correct and still be true to myself. Basically, when I started, I was a selfish writer. Now, I write with purpose.What tactics do you have when writing? (For example: outline or just write)
Ans: It depends. Sometimes, I have the story outline written down. Other times, I just go with the flow. But even if I go with the flow, I also have a general direction I want the story to go to.
What books have fortified you as a writer?
Glory: Books that made me cry, that made my heart sing with joy or pain, books that portrayed me, and books that portrayed human behavior in an honest way. I find books that fortify me almost every day because I am an avid reader. I can’t start naming them because the list would be too long, and I would forget a really important author and feel really bad afterwards. But I am most grateful that more and more writers are emerging. It means more books to discover. Yay!
However, when I need to remember why I love books and when I am contemplating on how I want readers to feel after they read my book, I simply read books by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Like I’m doing currently.
Have you written any other books that are not yet published?
Glory: Oh yes, I have one complete manuscript that is being considered for publication by some publishers. I’m really excited and nervous because it’s not my usual genre. I also have an incomplete manuscript that makes me bite my nails whenever I remember it. Currently, I’m working on the Husband Hunting series and my book in the Twin Bliss series which is a collaboration with other authors.
Do you feel like it’s most important to have A) Strong characters B) Mind-blowing Plot twists or C) Epic settings?
Glory: Strong characters. It’s important to have all three but who do readers relate with the most? Characters. The plot twists and the epic settings would fall flat if the characters are dull and lifeless. But a strong character can even challenge the author to push boundaries.
When you write a story, do your characters seem to hijack the story or do you feel like you have the reigns of the story?
Glory: Oh, I give them freedom to do whatever they want. It’s not my story, it’s theirs so they are free to explore. Even when I have a plot outline, I allow them to go off course. If it turns into a dead end, we can come back to where we stopped and continue from there. But basically, I go with my instincts. As I write, I know my characters more so if I feel a certain action or plot twist is not something that aligns with who they are, I change it. It’s important that writers go with their instincts.
What are common traps for aspiring writers?
Glory: Not reading. Not reading enough. I am also an editor and when I look at a manuscript, I can tell who is a reader and who is not. The things you struggle with as a non-reading writer are things that reading writers do not and will never struggle with. Writers who read build up a depth of knowledge and understanding of the craft. They are also very open to critique, reviews, and listen to their editors more because they understand that a story is more than just the writer.
Another trap is not studying the craft enough. So many successful authors today took a Creative Writing Course or an MFA in Creative Writing. They had the talent but they still underwent training. So many aspiring writers don’t believe they need training.
Lastly, many aspiring writers or new writers do not think they need an editor. It’s a common problem in this part of the world. Thankfully, things are changing as more and more (affordable) editors spring up in this part of the world, even though poor pricing is a problem.
Of all the characters you have created, which is your favorite and why?
Glory: Omasilechi in Husband Hunting 101. When I was writing that book, I was not thinking of publishing it. I just wrote something I enjoyed. I made the English so simple and unpretentious. I feel like Omasilechi is a part of me that I keep hidden most of the time. It felt really free to just write, to just be without any fears or worries. Phew. Besides, she is a badass and that’s who I want to be when I grow up. Haha.
What behind-the-scenes tidbit in your life would probably surprise your readers the most?
Glory: I cry a lot when watching emotional movies. It takes me three days to recover whenever I watch Titanic. Still can’t watch the last season of Merlin because I heard Arthur died.
Where can we find you online?
Glory: My two primary hang-outs are Instagram and Facebook
Facebook: Glory Abah
So this is it!
Many thanks to Glory Abah for featuring on this blog and make sure you check out her books.
Have a blessed day.
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