Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Short Story Day Africa 2013; The Interview

Short Story Day Africa 2013; The Interview The team at Short Story Day Africa has compiled twenty one questions their followers want to know about writers in Africa as part of the Short Story Day Africa 2013 celebrations. Do you actually enjoy writing, or do you write because you like the finished product? The situation varies. I think I mostly enjoy thinking about writing and imagining the finished product. I enjoy the beginning and end of my writings always but not the in-between because then I am too far from the start to change and too far from the end to stop. What are you reading right now? And are you enjoying it? (No cheating and saying something that makes you sound like the intelligentsia). I am reading the abridged version of David Copperfied. Charles Dickens was moved my love and romance and I’m a hopeless romantic, it never gets old for me. I’m also reading one of the 2010 issues of Oprah’s O magazines and looking at clothing for women. I like to imagine what my dream body image would look like in those clothes. Have you ever killed off a character and regretted it? Yes, I have. I killed off a boy in a school dormitory and my regret was the he died from AIDS related causes without a proper understanding of its dynamics. I also regret the melodrama that ensued. If you could have any of your characters over for dinner, which would it be and why? There is a character called Tom, who is a Caucasian Ugandan and has an enthralling relationship with his neighbour. They have a very alluring sexual interaction and he takes decaffeinated coffee which means he looks after his health. I just detest his relationship with his cat. Which one of your characters would you never invite into your home and why? I would never invite a certain mechanic who robbed a lady of Nine hundred thousand shillings because he could rob me too. Ernest Hemingway said: write drunk, edit sober. For or against? For, a million times for. It is in our deepest angst and uncontrollable states that words tear from our hearts to the page. My writing needs it. If against, are you for any other mind altering drug? I am not for any mind-altering drugs, except mind-altering past-times like reading, praying, talking etc… Our adult competition theme if Feast, Famine and Potluck. Have you ever put food in your fiction? If so, what part did it play in the story? In my most recent story, leftover Turkey was served to a cat to make it go away. What’s the most annoying question anyone’s ever asked you in an interview? So who is Beverley Nambozo? (huh?) If you could be any author other than yourself, who would you be? Maeve Binchy, (when she was alive.) She died last year on my birthday. If you could go back in time and erase one thing you had written from your writing history, what would it be and why? I would erase an erotic poem I read before youth in Mbarara town in Uganda, where the Mayor was present. What’s the most blatant lie you’ve ever told? Can’t zero on any, there are several. If someone reviews you badly, do you write them into your next book/story and kill them? I wouldn’t kill them, just make them suffer. What’s your favourite bad reviewer revenge fantasy? Naught. What’s the most frustrating thing about being a writer in Africa? Coping with many standards, the standards in Uganda, the standards set internationally, standards from peers, standards of the continent and trying to embrace and find my own place. Have you ever written naked? Do you mean there are people who haven’t? Does writing sex scenes make you blush? If I’m reading it before many people but not if I’m on my own. Who would play you in the film of your life? Gabrielle Union or Sharon Leal. If you won the Caine Prize for African Fiction, what would you do with the money? For me, the better question would be, what would I do with 10,000 GBP. High unlikely I would even be shortlisted for Caine. I would take my family on holiday to South America and invest in my literary project that promotes poetry and verse. What do you consider your best piece of work to date? I am reluctant to say because the readers usually think otherwise. What are you doing on 21 June 2013, to celebrate Short Story Day Africa? I wasn’t planning on any celebration but now that you ask, I may visit a place I have never visited before and start a story with that very setting. Beverley Nambozo Nsengiyunva END

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