Questions to ask an Author

I read something like this somewhere and it was more about an author saying that there are questions he wishes he was asked, not the common stuff like his writing routine, books he loves reading or what he’s working on. I got derailed and lost the link when I got the notification that the next episode of Descendants of the Sun that I’d been watching had finished downloading.

As a Writer, there are questions that come to mind- the kind that somehow get me talking more about my writing and love for writing so, I wrote down the questions I’d love to ask myself and answer them here. Let’s do this!

1. What is the one book or the first book that made you cry?

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. It is still the only book that I weep whenever I read it.

2. Does writing energize or drain you?

Sometimes, especially when I am writing dialogues, I feel energized. There are days when I am drained or rather more exhausted by it and when I feel like this I either press on then sleep immediately after or read a book instead.

3. What is your first experience of the power of words?

I think it is more when I was nine years old after my Dad passed away and suddenly his presence, the conversations we used to have, his voice felt like it only existed in my head. I also had a teacher in Primary school who often said I would not amount to much and I dreaded his lessons or just running into him in school- I think back then what hurt me most was knowing that adults could be so mean to children.

4. Did publishing or has publishing your first book changed the way you write?

Look, this one right here is something I cannot shy away from. I started out writing romance and posting novellas and short stories on smashwords (here’s my author page) and then tried out historical fiction with the first series I posted on Amazon, The Currents Series, and loved it so much that after reading that first proof copy I found myself writing more historical fantasy books set in Africa/ Kenya to be precise.

5. What does literary success look like to you?

I feel like this is more about having your book on someone’s bookshelf, it’s pages crumpled or turned so many times, highlighted, or set aside because it is the one treasure they keep reading. This could be with just one reader, or two or many…so much so that they talk about it, quote lines or simply share insights learned from the book. On the author’s side, it is also more about the feeling that ranges from elation to exhaustion just by writing- a commitment to waking up to words.

6. What was your hardest scene to write?

I wrote this book, Sifuna, and published it here in Kenya. It has one scene where the main character, Sifuna, grabs his fiancee, Dorothy and pushes her to the wall and spits on her- I wept when I wrote that.


There you have it, six of the many questions you could ask an author!

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