Monday 12 August 2013
But soon Blessing’s father has an affair and leaves, forcing the rest of the family to move to a village in the Niger Delta, to live with her mother’s family. Plucked from a comfortable life to one without running water or electricity, Warri seems appalling to Blessing, who says: "I opened my eyes as wide as they could go, to let in all the differences”.
She tells us what is not there - healthcare, hygiene, education – but as she forms relationships and learns about her environment, she describes beautifully what it does contain with humour and warmth.
Blessing becomes close to her grandma, a strong, wise character, who decides to take her on as a trainee midwife attending to women in the
Monday 5 August 2013
In the ten years I’ve been writing novels, I’ve learned that the general perception of a writer’s life is that it’s a good gig. Nice work if you can get it. In fact, hardly work at all when you think about it. I’ve written before about how insulting it is to be told by someone that he or she would love to give up work altogether and ‘just’ write.
Naturally, I make it my business to put these innocents right. Yes, there are joyous parts of this existence, but it is a full time job (and more) and, like all full-time jobs there are sweet spots and dark moments, highs and lows. And if you’re the kind of personality drawn to the sort of stories I am – emotional, dramatic, mysterious – then the chances are you have the type of heart that experiences those highs and lows very intensely. Here are five of each: